newbie question about trainers...
So, now that my life is less crazy and I finally have a teeny tiny little bit of time (and some money!) to pursue the lessons I’ve been wanting. I’m on the hunt for a high quality instructor. So far, I’ve only been considering ones with a minimum of USDF bronze but, a handful have silver & gold as well along with several other notable achievements. I realize these trainers are obviously, in very high demand. They aren’t cheap either… This is fine, though as lots of people do, I live a very busy life. I also, happen to live very far from basically everything… So far, even the closest trainer is roughly two hours away in good weather… Now, I don’t want just a good trainer, I want an amazing trainer… I have high expectation if I’m going to be spending serious money on it I want a trainer who is also just as serious. Now, I’m very realistic IMO; I am not expecting to be a grand prix rider, ever. Nor do I want level 2 overnight. Ideally, I’d like to get to a point where I feel confident competing at training level one someday, not tomorrow, not even a year from now, someday when I’m ready & my primary mount is also ready… Unfortunately at this point in my life and due impart to how far I live, I don’t foresee being able to train with a trainer more than bi-monthly… So before I even begin arranging times to meet with these people are 2 lessons per months even a thing? Is it worth even bothering hauling out to take lessons if I’m only able to take 2 per month max? Do trainers typically work within these types of constraints? I’m not able to ride in the winter so practicing at home is out of the question as it is too slick outside of an arena. I am willing to practice indefinitely anything (if possible) I learn from the ground but, I’m not sure this would be enough. I desperately want to become the best rider that I can be for not only myself but, my horses but, also don’t want to waste a very busy trainers time if I am just plain asking too much/biting off more than I can chew given the amount of time I have to work with.
To me, you would be best off waiting until late spring. Trying to do this now will be a waste of time.
And while 2x a month might be okay, it all depends on you, your horse and how well you retain what you are being taught.
Also need to remember that while you might think you have lesson down pat? On your own at home the other weeks, you could well be doing it wrong.
Are there no good trainers closer, that may be able to see you more often. If you are just starting out, don't know and you didn't say, but you might be wasting your money going to the type of trainer you want, as you just might not be at the level that they can really help you.
If you are learning only basics and your horse is not trained already, this is a two fold process. Horse needs to be trained, and you too.
You might do just as well working with someone the top trainers can recommend, perhaps a former student or staff of theirs.
Have you checked to see who they might recommend.
I agree with Palomine,
A lot depends on what riding experience you have. Many top trainers will not take novices, they want the rider to know more than the basics.
To have lessons only bi monthly is not going to be enough if you intend to work hard at it. You will just be getting over the muscle ache and repeat again. You would be better to ask for recommended trainers , ride with them and then, once you are fit, go to the better trainer once a month to see how you are getting on.
High expectations are excellent, but make sure your expectations are high in the areas that matter. My coach isn't certified (insured, but not certified), many of the top instructors here are insured but not certified. Over three years with this particular coach I have excelled beyond what I had ever imagined in riding ability and confidence (not to mention my horses training doing a complete turn around). All of that said, I can only ride with her once a week and if I could ride any less than that it wouldn't be worth it. I recommend finding yourself a good coach who can help you get to the point that you're READY to start working with upper level trainers and going from there.
Thanks for the input everyone. It was all very appreciated. Where I had my horses at home we're 2 hours from the nearest town that has more than two general stores and a post office.
I've moved my horses down to a facility where I can more easily work with them and a trainer through Winter and depending on how everything goes, through spring, and summer...
I'm in contact with several trainers and have been very upfront with them regarding what my expectations are and what I would like to bring back from taking lessons approximately 2-4x/week. We're very hopeful to be able to have the privilege of taking lessons the start of December.
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