Refuse to be discouraged by instructors
Ok, my first horse was a beautiful TB gelding who, as a beginner, I felt safe with. I starting taking basic english lessons with an instructor whom now I look back and realize is someone I would never work with, again. She somehow convinced me that my horse and I weren't "connecting" and that we wasn't the horse for me. Being new to the game and him being my first horse, I believed her and sold him, regretting it everyday. I convinced myself that I was no good at english riding and bought a western/trail horse that I've had for about 6 months now. This mare has really helped me get my confidence back in riding, and I really want to dedicate myself to learning to ride english, with a new instructor. So now I am looking for another good, safe horse I can start taking lessons on and riding english with (this mare is a trail horse pro, but that's about it), and hoping like crazy I can find a better instructor. Anyone have any recommendations as far as looking for someone to work with? I'm a confident beginner and I need someone who is willing to teach me and help me improve as a rider and not just yell at me the entire time and tell me I'm not assertive :-| I refuse to be soured by this!!
Where are you located at?
First off, I'm sorry you had a bad experience with your past instructor. It's hard to find a good one and I'm glad you're going to continue on with lessons.
I wouldn't sell your horse to get an 'english horse' just yet. Theres no reason that a a trail horse pro can not do basic english flat work. Also, most places have school horses for you to ride and I would recommend that before buying another horse for the new discipline.
I have been lucky to be working with an amazing instructor for the past year or so. However I'm going to be moving and need to find a new one and I just dread it. But here is what I do.
I always go and watch a lesson first. I call up and talk to the instructor, ask them about their teaching methods, qualifications, experience and things of that nature and if they pass, I ask them if there would be a time I could see a class similar to the one I will be placed in (Beginner, Advanced, Dressage, Jumping, whatever).
If you want, you can always schedule your observing first and bring a list of questions or concerns with you. It doesn't hurt to tell them your past experiences and the concerns that come from it. It's important to realize that the instructor works for you, not the other way around. After a bunch of bad instructors, I started 'interviewing' them, and had much better luck.
Thank you so much for the advice. Funny how I automatically think I work for the instructor when in reality (you're right!), I'm paying them to help ME. And I think I will try Libby out with english - who knows, maybe she'll embrace it :^) Thanks again!
I live in MI and know some good instructors. You can PM me if you are in that area and I can tell you them:)
Well, you already know what you don't want from an instructor. Keep it in mind and go watch some lessons. Trust your gut. You'll do fine. I'm sure you'll do very well in your riding. Some of the best riders are the ones who hate being told what they can't do.
Look at my original thread: http://www.horseforum.com/english-ri...tructor-70761/
I was told by 3 or 4 (!) instructors that my horse is no good for english, I don't have a seat, eta-eta-eta. I found the instructor, who believes that any horse and rider are capable to learn and progress, and here we go. She also have beginners (not so beginners anymore), who got OTTBs, and they progressed together. I've seen them riding, and let me tell you, they look VERY nice.
Don't be discouraged, look for new instructor! When you talk to the new one, don't be ashamed and tell him/her your concerns and ask for honest opinion (that's what I did).
Keep your chin up girl, just remember they are human just like you. My first experiance with a trainer was a two month working student job at 16. I lived at the farm and it was a terrible experiance. The women called my mother and told her that I should forget ever being a horseperson. It put a dent in my self confidence. I found another working student job and trained under a professional. I competed in dressage and jumping and trained for x country. I'm not an expert today, but I have my own stable, 6 mares with 2 babies on the way, and ride the trails for fun.
Stick to what you know and find horse people who's judgement you value to help you along the way. Remember, the one bragging and asserting how great a horse person they are could just be all talk. Look and see what they do, how thier horses act around them, and how thier students act around them. Crying students... nervous horses... run for the hills. :)
I just want to echo the sentiment that your awesome trail horse might be the perfect horse to learn English with right now!
You regretted selling your old horse, don't rush into doing that again. It's a special thing to have a horse you can trust, especially when going into new territory.
Any horse can do English, Western and trail riding. You'll be glad to have a good friend that you can take out on the trail to have fun between lessons and arena work :D
I know a very good trainer please PM if you are interested. She is in the top 50 for the USA(:
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