Trainer Internship Questions
Hello!!! This is mainly for trainers, but anyone's input would be much appreciated!!!
Just a quick rundown of the situation, I'm 15 and looking at getting my GED. I've been around horses for roughly 10 years, but I've owned and really worked with them for the past 8 years. Mostly just general work/western pleasure and trail riding. I worked doing public trail rides for a few years at a local campground and I'm learning how to ride English. I'd really like to become a horse trainer and eventually riding instructor for mainly the western style however. I do know that in internships you're mostly doing grunt work, which (for the record) would like to say I'm not afraid of working hard long hours.
I would really like to intern with some Western trainers, like reining, cutting, barrels ect... So, I guess my questions would be:
1.) Would a trainer consider taking a 16 year old on for an internship?
2.) Would they give me lessons on how to actually ride? I know how to ride, but not in any really specific area (except some english I've been learning recently).
Basically, would they take me on with my background and age? If not what could I do to improve my chances? Thank you for any and all input!
I am sure there are some trainers out there that would work with you. If you would be willing to clean stalls they would probable be willing to give you lessons. I doubt they would put you in a cituation where you where riding clients horses but if you are looking to learn there are a lot of possibilities out there. Look around your area. See what trainers are out there go and talk to them. The better the trainer the bigger the barn the more help they will need and in some ways the better chance and the more you will learn. Finding a local trainer who has done very little will not help you much but who knows. Never herts to ask around.
NRHA use to have a non pro apprintes program. Not sure if they still do. Look on web site like NRHA and such find a trainer close to you and call and talk to them. It might end up a summer thing here you will need to go and live there. Again never know until you ask.
Sixteen years old is pretty young, and there are liability issues that any trainer would have to consider.
My advice would be to find a job at a barn -- cleaning tack, grooming show horses, whatever -- until you turn 18. You might try to find a stable at which the trainer/instructor is willing to give you riding lessons in exchange for the work.
In addition to your age, the other issue is your riding ability. In order to be beneficial to a trainer (as an intern, assistant, etc.) you must be able to not only ride the horses in training, but also help those horses' owners reach their goals. Your post doesn't indicate your writing ability, but you suggested that you are not proficient in any particular discipline.
The goal in the horse business is always to obtain as much education as possible. You might think of going to college and taking courses in equine science if any are available. But your riding skills must be top-notch in order to be considered for an internship -- or, at least, a valuable one.
I'm a horse business consultant and riding instructor, and I used to train horses, so I'll check back here later to see if you have any more specific questions, and I'll try to help wherever I can.
The guy who owns and trains cutting horses close by DOES take young riders (the girl riding there is I believe 13 or 14). He obviously doesn't care much about liability (and girl doesn' wear helmet which is complete bs IMO, because if something happens to her (knock on wood) I'm sure the parents will sue the guy). But anyway yes, some trainers out there WILL take you in and train.
We have had a couple of younger students from Europe come for three months at a time and ride and one was 16 and did quite well.
There are also foreign exchange programs to Australia and the outback stations that a person your age could get involved with.
Most of the trainers kind of need you to walk into the barn and ask for work though.
Some of the trainers in our area are also starting to ask for some money to cover living costs.
Come to australia! It's great :]
I might jump in here - My situation is a little different, but also quite similar. In a few years, I would like to head over to the US and do an internship with a reining or reined cow horse trainer. I'm 19 now - So would be 21/22. I'm an experienced rider, have owned/trained numerous horses and regularly show in a number of disciplines - I have my first pony to break in now. I guess i'm wondering how many trainers would be willing to take on someone like me in return for my keep?
The Ward Ranch(one of the biggest reined cow horse barns in California)Hires ONLY Australians and has a company over there screen students for an 8 month stay.
I think you get paid also.
There head trainer is from Australia.
Ward River Ranch
^ Thanks a lot for that, marecare - I'll have a look right now.
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