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Lauren 12-01-2007 11:29 PM

Getting Into the Horse World...Again.
Hi. :) I wasn't sure what section this went in, so I just went with General.

Anyway, I am trying to get back into the "horse world" so to speak. After the holidays (or during, I'm not sure) I was planning on beginning riding lessons again. I took them for about two years and then stopped for about a year because my instructor went to college and I never found anyone else suitable.

I am going to college (very seriously considering Midway College in KY) to get a degree in Equine Science or Equitation Instruction. I'm currently a junior in high school, so I don't really have that long to get back into gear. I feel like if I don't start working with horses again now, I will be majorly underprepared for college coursework with horses.

The thing is, though, since I have already had riding lessons for two years and I would consider myself to be a pretty good rider...where do I go next? I would love to ride and show in barrel racing or reining, but it is pretty much a necessity to own my own horse if I want to do that. I don't own my own horse. So I think taking riding lessons with a new instructor may be counterproductive unless I am actually learning something. I would just be wasting money.

So basically the question is how would I be able to put myself into a place with horses and not just take lessons, but possibly train horses? Would it be wrong to just call a barn and ask to speak to their trainer and just try to be an assistant for a while? I just really need some help on how to go about doing this.

The really crappy thing is that my boyfriend owns a horse who is not trained and really has no manners at all. His folks won't let me train the horse. They're saying if I get hurt that my parents will just sue them. It really upsets me that they don't understand that this is probably the ONLY opportunity I have to build skills in training before I go to college. It's extremely frustrating.

This is sort of my first post besides my introduction, so I hope it is in the correct section and everything is acceptable. :D Thank you!

jazzyrider 12-02-2007 04:04 AM

hiya lauren, well you are in a pickle arent you :)

firstly, would your parents assure your boyfriends parents that there would be no law suits if anything happened to you. maybe they would be happy to even sign a waver of responsibility or something. sounds like they are a little uptight which doesnt help you much :) i will say though that if you havent specifically trained horses before there is a lot more involved than normal riding. are you sure within yourself that you are ready for this? not having a go at you, just offering some food for thought :)

its also not a bad idea to ask to volunteer your time to work with a trainer. im not sure how many would be receptive to such thoughts but you wont know unless you ask. there are probably other places that you could ask as well like equestrian centres etc

besides that you could use the time to brush up on the theory side of things as there will be plenty of that ;)

Thoreau 12-02-2007 11:08 AM

I'm in a similar boat as you, except I just started riding last week, so I'm no where near as advanced.

Have you looked in your local horse publications for a working student program? Some will let you work off the purchase price of a horse, board, or even provide housing or salary.

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