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Work for lessons
I haven't had a lesson in 2 months and I was wanting to get back into riding. The problem is money. Do lesson barns allow you to work in exchange for lessons?
Some of them do allow you to work off the whole thing or part of it. Your best bet would be to get some names of lesson barns in your area, call them and ask them about it, since all are different :)
This is a good topic....how do you go about asking someone? Just straight up? I was wondering the same thing because money is tight. Is there a polite way of asking or do most barns half expect people to ask those questions...like pretty common?
Tell them you are interested in lessons but can't afford them right now and you're wondering if you can work them off (or part of them) by cleaning stalls, cleaning tack, cleaning paddocks, clipping horses, etc. I used to clean 20 stalls and feed/hay the horses (about 2.5hrs of work) in exchange for a lesson.
It's not uncommon for barns to have students work off their lesson fees. Most of them are called "Working Student" positions. I would go to several barns and ask them if they'd be interested in hiring you in exchange for lessons. Think of it more as a job position and bring a resume if you have one.
To ask someone, I'd be up front and be "I would love to take lessons with you...would it be possible to work in exchange for lessons?" The more upfront you are to people, since technically they will be your "employer" the better, IMO
At the barn that I work at they are willing to do that. I'm sure that many of them would be willing to as long as it doesn't inconvenience any of the other workers that actually get paid for their work.
Sometimes they even let you work their, get paid, and ride their horses. That's how it is in my case. I do my work in the morning and get it done and then if there are any horses that need to be ridden, I can get on and usually the trainer/instructor is there to give me pointers, if not a lesson.
Not all barns offer that, but some do. Just look around. I agree with SonnyWimps in that you need to be upfront and tell them what you are looking for.
Where I grew up riding we would work all morning and part of the afternoon in exchange for a "free ride" on the school horses - sometimes not the nicest or best trained horses though! At another stable I used to take lessons and get paid to do other work like grooming, picking paddocks, cleaning tack... menial tasks that regular staff didn't have time for.
I found a barn that is allowing me to work for lessons and the work is paying for the full lesson fee. :-)
i think most barns are willing to trade out i use to work of my roping lessons by cleaning paddocks 7 a day (small barn) because she was already getting all my money for starting my colt. then when a more she had a professional trainer come in he let me trade out riding his colts and preping them for roping lessons whic was great one of the best trainers around but ohhh he could get so mean but i learned alot from him
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