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TheEquestrianThespian 10-29-2008 07:51 PM

Horses + College + Wanna-be Jumper?
 
Hullo, all.

I've been lurking around the boards but I have a question for you cool cats. I've been riding for over eight years and I am thinking about pursuing it professionally. However, I live in the North East and there are few, if any 'acclaimed' programs for Western riders like myself. I do jump, and I'm going to start taking lessons. I am a fast learner and from past lessons and such know how to count strides, take off, etc.

Does this sound like a good idea? I would LOVE to ride professionally, but is it too late for that? Am I switching disciplines too late to apply to college?

Any input would be great. I'm riding Sunday and will post some pics of me jumping. Maybe you can judge what I need to work on?

peaceLOVE

equineangel91 10-29-2008 09:37 PM

ive been riding like four and a half years...and im gonna pursue it professionally. Use the internet honestly, to find the best program for you

hotreddun 10-29-2008 10:28 PM

I rode western events for 9 years then decided I was done with the overdressed overpriced underskilled AQHA world and switched to jumping when I was 23 years old. I graduated college with my bachelors...and said screw it and began assisting a jumping trainer full time. I rode 5 horses 5 days a week in dressage and jumping plus cleaned stalls, helped with lessons and groomed. Then my husband and I found out we were pregnant...so God threw us another curveball:D Sydney is 3 months old now so I am getting back to work and I still plan on shooting for the 2016 Olympics...I figure she will be 8 years old and that gives me 8 years to get there. It's never to late in my opinion. Just be ready for some weird looks from maybe family members or friends. My in-laws pretty much think I am a lazy, do-nothing wife because I don't have a "real" job.

TheEquestrianThespian 10-29-2008 11:45 PM

Thanks, hotreddun. That made me smile. It's a great goal to aim for - I've love to be there with you!! I'm going to go check out some schools and see if they have what I'm looking for. These next few months should be interesting, to say the least!

upnover 10-31-2008 12:33 AM

It is NEVER too late to attain your goals with riding! The oldest olympian this year was this 60 something year old guy from Japan riding dressage! A lot of the good riding colleges have you ride a few disciplines so you'll get experience in more then 1 field.
I'd try to spend as much time at a good show barn with a trainer who's willing to help you. The best way to get get known is to get associated with a respected trainer and get yourself out there as much as you can. Most horse people don't take a 'no name' seriously and it can take years in the show ring to prove yourself. You may have to start at the bottom and work your way up so be willing to work hard, do anything, ride anything, and prove yourself.
I'd also take several classes in small business and equine law if your college offers it. I've found that lots of new trainers tend to be lacking in business skills and in this day and age you're going to want to be familiar with liability.

Painted Ride 10-31-2008 01:07 PM

how would i go about looking up with schools that offer this as a career????? or should i just apprentice at barn?

hotreddun 10-31-2008 10:28 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by tbenitez (Post 178115)
how would i go about looking up with schools that offer this as a career????? or should i just apprentice at barn?

you can google it. Then look at the universities websites to look at what programs they offer. Some actually offer courses like upnover mentioned...others just have riding teams. You can also google barns that are looking for working students. Usually you can do that part time and still go to school.

TheEquestrianThespian 11-01-2008 08:59 PM

Thanks for all the advice :]

I'm visiting two schools next Friday and Monday and I am very excited. I'm just hoping that my fast-learning skills won't fail me now, haha. When my course-work dies down, I plan to be at the barn I've been at for like, nine years, all the time. I am so ready for the work, too. I'm a fan of kicking my own ass, hee.

LadyDreamer 11-02-2008 12:13 AM

Finding a college that offers what you would like to learn or is in an area rich with equine activities helps too.

Midway College: Women's College: Athletics: Equine

If anyone would like learning more about Midway College, please PM. I'd be more than happy to talk about it and what the college offers!

TheEquestrianThespian 11-02-2008 12:37 AM

Aw man, that seems amazing. But it is waaay too far from me. I wish I lived in the mid-West sometimes.


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