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vivache 11-03-2009 11:20 PM

Debating Between Instructors

I've been going to Instructor A for a little over year. She is very nice and explains things. I feel like I've learned a lot. She's very fun.. she takes her students to shows, both fun and 'serious.' She lets me help out when my ride is late. However, she is usually late. I can schedule my times early so this is minimized, but is usually an issue. She sometimes cancels without calling, usually if she's sick. I am not fond of her employees.. one of them is very rude.

I have started going to Instructor B for a different opinion. Apparently, everything I've learned at Instructor A is a lie. He has a very odd sense of humor that is very hard to understand at times.. telling me that the knot used to tie a western cinch 'went out in the fifties.' I just can't seem to grip using the holes(even though it's probably easier), and he makes it seem like I'm dumb when I ask for assistance. I also HAVE to take weekend group lessons.
Instructor B is very organized. He is NEVER late. Lessons never go over. I also feel like I'm using my body better, and I'm learning how to relax a little more. He does a lot of fun rodeo-like games, which is nice, but I am not a very competitive person.

I need to pick one instructor. Which would *you* pick? I'm leaning toward A, but..

Valentina 11-04-2009 04:00 PM

Did "B" tell you everything you learned from "A" was a lie? Wrong? Or did he just say I do it like "X" not "Y" like your old instructor.

There are many ways to learn things. Being able to tie a western girth instead of just using the new holes is a GOOD thing - this way if you ever get a western girth without the holes you can still ride - instructor "B"'s students would have to ride without a saddle.

Talk to instructor "A" and tell her (except if she gets sick at the last moment) you need to know a day ahead of time if she's going to be late or not show up. Doesn't she require you to give her 24 hours notice if you're going to miss a regular lesson? If so tell her you need the same courtesy.

Tell her about the rude employee and next time that employss is rude to you tell the rude employee just that - say "How RUDE" - e.g. if she cuts you off in mid sentence say something like "How RUDE not to allow me to finish my sentence, do you have a time limit for sentences?" If you don't she won't change as it sounds like instructor "A" probably won't correct her (but do tell instructor "A" about the problem and give specific examples so she'll know what to look for as it's probably not just you being insulted).

make certain instructor "A" understands that if these issues get fixed you'd prefer to stay with her, if not you'll be lokking elsewhere - perhaps instructor "B" or maybe someone else?

And by the way - tell Instructor "B" (if this is the way you feel) that mandatory weekend lessons are out (no time, no money, ...) and how he makes YOU feel when yo ask questions - see if he'll change things for you.

Base your final decision on how BOTH of them react to your requests - do either of them change? If so do they make an effort to maintain the change or slide back in their old ways?

After you've spoken to both and seen how/IF they change over the course of a month - THEN make your decision.

upnover 11-06-2009 10:56 PM

I'd be curious to know who is more correct, trainer A or B? If trainer A ISN"T teaching you correctly I'd say B. If they're both correct but have their own way ot teaching then I'd say pick the one who you will get the most out of. If you love Trainer A, why don't you ask to speak to her privately one day. Tell her how much you love her, and then explain to her some of your concerns. Be encouraging and try to figure out a way to work it out together.

vivache 11-07-2009 12:12 AM

Instructor A is more traditional English, which is what I want to learn. Instructor B is more.. natural horsemanship, etc.

I think I will stick with A. I found out that a new instructor will be coming to pick up some lessons. That way, I can get a second opinion and take lessons on the horse I lease and that I'm comfortable with.

coffeemama 11-07-2009 01:01 AM

Stick with "A"! Really, why do some trainers patronize their students like that? I rode with another rider who sometimes made fun of me like I was an idiot when I'm still trying to learn and it really got to me. She told me my first trainer wasn't teaching me right or I would be a better rider by now but I know my limitations and my regular trainer would never make me do things I wasn't ready to do and eases me into new things after she feels I have a solid foundation on whatever I need to know before moving forward with something new and challenging. I feel safe with my first trainer, trust her with my life and she knows what and how I think and feel about things. She, too, goes to shows with her students, etc and is fun but also serious when she needs to be and I think I am coming along okay considering I only started out riding once a week and now twice a week. I haven't cantered yet and she wants me to secure a better seat first before I go there...she's doing things with me to strengthen my seat and build my confidence first. Stick with who you feel directly connected to regardless of the other people there. In the end, you are there for you, not for them and I am sure your trainer respects that and eventually those people will too.

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