Anyone and Everyone is a Trainer
I have been so frustrated recently with the idea of trainers, that anyone and everyone can consider themselves a trainer and try and make money off of it. Am I a trainer? Heck no. Do I work with horses that have problems and can help them if I have the ability to? Yes I do, but I would not call myself a trainer. There's a big difference between being a good rider and being trainer worthy. Recently I have seen a huge amount of trainers that may have been able to ride 20-30 years ago and did some showing and then got into training people and horses.
About a month ago tons of people were fooling around bareback in the jumping arena and doing a small course. I was observing as doing a full course was outside what we could handle at the time, (Jake rushes a lot, gets strung out and off balance and I go everywhere) we were just getting back into jumping after Jake's layoff and then building the muscle back slowly. We had at the point been doing single cross rails. When the 'trainer' of the stables looked at me and said "your turn" now I get along very well with everyone at the stables, I like hanging out with them, so I laughed and said if I did it was going to be trotting and with lots of circles. They gave me a face and said, "oh if you don't feel confident I understand, or if he just can't do it". Which they assumed because Jake had been laid off after a fall over a jump, the only time everyone there had seen me jump. My stupid pride kicked in. Jake and I can jump over 3 feet with our max (that I will let us go) is 3'9" and he doesn't refuse and I have pride in that. So I gathered myself together and did the course of cross rails and small verticals (the last jump was 2'6" i think) In the end it wasn't pretty. But he didn't knock a rail....
Okay so i was laughing, thinking that we were still way unprepared to be doing courses and was planning on the next few weeks of taking it easy. When I got back to where everyone was sitting (with eyes like 0.0, yes my horse can jump) everyone remarks on his energy then the trainer goes and says, "You need a stronger bit on him." I was amazed, it wasn't "you need more flat work....more slow work." no it was a stronger bit. When I told her that I wouldn't go to anything with a chin strap she suggested the thinest twisted snaffle I could find. I pointed out that Jake needs work on relaxing and I needed work with keeping my hands more soft and not catching him with the bit, she just shrugged and said, "it looks like your working to hard."...........Its supposed to be hard. Then again this is the trainer that is training brand new kid beginners on lame old horses with a HUGE western curb bit and a saddle that the kids heels barely go past the saddle so they use a whip to get the horse to move forward. Then when my best friend (now she IS trainer worthy in my book) came out to give me a lesson. I managed to get this course. Which I am still in need of a lot of work but Jake and FABULOUS without a stronger bit. Yeah It was very hard and my arms felt like noodles, but we got something accomplished without the pain of a thin bit.
The title of 'trainer' comes with responsibilities and more than just buying insurance. I myself once got a call from some lady who said that someone else gave them my number and told them I was a good trainer. (Which the guy who gave my number away had no clue about horses and a good trainer and bad) She wanted someone to go with her and give her advice on a horse that she was thinking about buying, and on top wanted to borrow my trailer. I said no to the trailer because they just had a ball attached to the bumper. Then I explained clearly that I was NOT a trainer, but she begged me to help anyways. So I told her I would go as a fellow horse owner, NOT as a trainer. I found out that this lady wanted a 'flashy-high stepping' trail horse (Bad sign number one), looking at an arab/saddlebred that was lame in a back leg, had a club foot and was super GREEN. One way or another I got introduced as the trainer of this lady, rode the horse and told the lady that this horse wasn't for her and would need many many months of training with a TRAINER. The lady then asked me my rates and availability. Long story short, I couldn't keep the lady from getting on the horse and BAM she got bucked off in her heels when she panicked when the horse trotted and clutched her legs around the very green horses belly. On the way home I was getting praises like I was super women for horses. What the heck? I am not that amazing of a rider, its not being humble. Yes I have been riding all my life so I have experience, I don't not have the training ability....yet. I'm still working on gaining experience and trying different methods, I do train and work with horses, but not a TRAINER in the professional aspect.
That is how I am. I train my own horses but from word of mouth I have had others bring me theirs. I will help out but if I get a horse that is to much or beyond my experience I won't take it on. Most of the horses that I have helped get started are horses that I know personally. I like helping other people out with their horses. I also tell them straight up I am no trainer but I will train them to ride to the best of my ability.
See I like and respect that. You have to get experience somehow but its almost a false pretense of training when really your not at the level. If someone wants help and you think you can do it wonderful! Just don't say that you can train anything and everything....bla bla bla. I can't believe how many trainers I have met that told me Jake would always be how he was. He's come so far now, hes far from normal or perfect, but the improvments are great.
I'm kinda like that. I can do some simple stuff and I'll help people out if I know what I'm doing. I wouldn't advertise myself as a trainer in a million years. It makes me mad when I see 16 year olds boasting and thinking they're hot sh*t because they can crash around a barrel pattern or stay on while a horse charges through a hunter course. No 16 year old is a horse trainer. Period.
Why even bother with that "trainer" if you're obviously not getting anything out of her lessons?
Your horse has a really pretty trot, btw. ;)
Thank you, he is very animated and loves to stretch out at the trot.
Good post, though I'd argue there's a difference between a trainer and a Trainer.
I'm a trainer. That's my job title; I work with horses, break the young ones, season the older ones, get paid, have results. Etc. Things your average pleasure rider can't do. But I'm not a Trainer in the Tom Dorrance sense, and truly very few people are. And people like me, as you say, really shouldn't be advertising our expertise all over the place like we're some sort of magical horse whisperers. Yet so many do.
There are lots of people out there that call themselves "trainers" and can't ride to save their lives, or do it improperly.
You'd be amazed at what some people post on YouTube and call themselves "trainers."
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My favourite is when "istructors" start teaching students that ride at a higher level than they do themselves. My first trainer was just a joke but unfortunately when you don't know anything you'll believe what they tell. It really set my sister and I back for our first few years of riding, she had never jumped higher than 3'6" (and this on a MASSIVE mare who could jump 5' like it was nothing) and never evented higher than pre entry yet for some reason just before we abandoned ship for someone qualified she was taking a girl x country schooling to training level... I just don't understand some people
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For trainers its just the whole almighty trainer syndrome. Everyone has to start somewhere when you get in to any profession. I can't say anything about your abilities bubba13 I'm just going off the fact of the ones I have seen. I don't think it really matters if you are freaking amazing Trainer or a basic, its more of the promise of only teaching to the level that you can train/teach to.
I guess my issue is more with the 'Instructors' as rosie was putting it. I have seen many trainers that couldn't get on a horse themselves because of weight issues, and when they use more tools (german martingales, big bits, tie downs....ect on DEAD old horses) in the hands of beginners. =\
Good for you for getting out of that Rosie, its so hard when you don't know any better.
Youtube.....yeah. I am an avid Youtuber but still some of the stuff I see sometimes. o.0
YES!! we have so many people who say they are 'trainers' i had one of them she was trying to push all of us way to fast especially since 3 out of the 5 of us were retraining high strung arabs. Plus hse kept telling us to tighten our tie downs or put on stronger bits i got fed up and stopped taking the lessons. Now im at a better place with someone who actually knows what they are doing all her horses are soft level headed and started correctly compared to the nut cases at my old barn. But we have several 'trainers' out here i only really have 2 a barrel coach and a regular coach haha
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