Just a rant on Abusive Instructors - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 23 Old 08-14-2013, 04:38 PM
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I never had formal instruction until dd took lessons and I would fill in for DD's lesson when DD couldn't make it. I enjoyed it a lot. It was very pleasant. However, I have had plenty of family and friends instruct me through the years. There is a difference when your pride and relationship stops you from quitting and crying "meany poop head!". But the result would be the same for someone that didn't know or wasn't related to the "instructor" and just sucked it up. It is just human nature to not take it from a stranger that you are paying - and there are certainly enough to choose from to find that perfect "fit". The determining factor to me as to whether I will "take it" or not is the "instructor's" ability. It is double, triple nice if they are gifted at teaching, though.

For a beginner, especially kids...no, there is absolutely no place for any sort of yelling or "verbal abuse" and their ability to instruct becomes as important as their riding abilities. That I agree with.

There is just as much horse sense as ever, but the horses have most of it.
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post #12 of 23 Old 08-14-2013, 06:28 PM
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Originally Posted by TrailBlazin View Post
I turned his head and brought him in a circle and got him going again. But then my instructor tarted yelling and screaming, going off the deep end that I wasn't aloud to do that because she didn't tell me to do it. She started insulting me, saying I'd "never be able to get out of this arena" and I was "wasting her highly valued time".

I had an instructor who yelled all the time but she didn't say things like that. I wouldn't have put up with that either.
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post #13 of 23 Old 08-14-2013, 06:50 PM
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Originally Posted by TrailBlazin View Post
The arena was like 80% humidity and it was 41 degrees OUTSIDE. The plastic inside the roof of the arena was sweating so bad it was dripping in some places. This horse was very uncomfortable and I was uncomfortable riding him.
41C = 105.8F. Your instructor (and you) were wrong before the instructor ever started yelling, because that level of heat at 80% humidity is just asking for heat stroke.

I do have some experience - boot camp at Parris Island - of abusive instructors who think yelling at you is a motivational tool, but even there, that likely would be "black flag" conditions, in which physical training is prohibited due to the number of heat stroke casualties.
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post #14 of 23 Old 08-14-2013, 08:06 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by jamesqf View Post
41C = 105.8F. Your instructor (and you) were wrong before the instructor ever started yelling, because that level of heat at 80% humidity is just asking for heat stroke.

I do have some experience - boot camp at Parris Island - of abusive instructors who think yelling at you is a motivational tool, but even there, that likely would be "black flag" conditions, in which physical training is prohibited due to the number of heat stroke casualties.
I agree 100% although I do like to do some light riding outside in the wind if weather permits. I really wanted to use the outdoor arena because there was a breeze and it was cloudy, but she insisted that I use the indoor
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post #15 of 23 Old 08-14-2013, 08:13 PM
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I totally get what you're saying TrailBlazin. There is a huge difference between raising your voice to call out - I'd call that yelling to someone, where the aim is to get information across. Then there is yelling at someone and it's a bullying behaviour, nothing more.

The way I see it as most instructors start out wanting to share their knowledge and in their rational mind they think of the right things to say, how to motivate, and how to get the best out of someone. Then, for whatever reason, the student does something that they didn't ask for/want/see coming etc and then to some people the rational side of the brain sort of shuts down and they get defensive. They feel that by the student doing whatever they did their own job/position/respect/power is at risk. Then regress to a primitive form of "reasoning" which is basically asserting their power or "bullying". A lot of students will cave immediately to yelling, other instructors might berate them for their skills, until they feel inferior, gaining the upper hand that way. This works especially with children, which is why I find that some instructors who teach children do not go well at teaching adults.

The good thing is that there are heaps of instructors out there who are good, who have confidence in themselves and don't feel the need to bully for respect. They can be tough, motivational, they can be brutally honest, push and drive someone without having to bring them down. Not everyone has these skills, so sometimes even the most accomplished rider or horse trainer might not be a very good instructor.

I think people only treat you as bad as you let them. Sure, some people brush it off but you're paying this person for this behaviour, and by not pulling them up on it you're allowing it to continue. I know I'm not the person who acts all tough and lets people treat me however they want to. I demand civility, and give it return and if someone cannot have basic control of their speech and emotions, I don't want much to do with them.
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post #16 of 23 Old 08-14-2013, 08:16 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Saskia View Post
I totally get what you're saying TrailBlazin. There is a huge difference between raising your voice to call out - I'd call that yelling to someone, where the aim is to get information across. Then there is yelling at someone and it's a bullying behaviour, nothing more.

The way I see it as most instructors start out wanting to share their knowledge and in their rational mind they think of the right things to say, how to motivate, and how to get the best out of someone. Then, for whatever reason, the student does something that they didn't ask for/want/see coming etc and then to some people the rational side of the brain sort of shuts down and they get defensive. They feel that by the student doing whatever they did their own job/position/respect/power is at risk. Then regress to a primitive form of "reasoning" which is basically asserting their power or "bullying". A lot of students will cave immediately to yelling, other instructors might berate them for their skills, until they feel inferior, gaining the upper hand that way. This works especially with children, which is why I find that some instructors who teach children do not go well at teaching adults.

The good thing is that there are heaps of instructors out there who are good, who have confidence in themselves and don't feel the need to bully for respect. They can be tough, motivational, they can be brutally honest, push and drive someone without having to bring them down. Not everyone has these skills, so sometimes even the most accomplished rider or horse trainer might not be a very good instructor.

I think people only treat you as bad as you let them. Sure, some people brush it off but you're paying this person for this behaviour, and by not pulling them up on it you're allowing it to continue. I know I'm not the person who acts all tough and lets people treat me however they want to. I demand civility, and give it return and if someone cannot have basic control of their speech and emotions, I don't want much to do with them.
I agree 100%!
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post #17 of 23 Old 08-15-2013, 07:50 AM
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Sorry, if you dont want to be pushed then find some silly little girl who will tell you the sun shines out of your behind and everything is fine.

I pay good money to improve my riding, I dont want anyone telling me it something is good unless it is 110% perfect.

The best instructor I ever had screamed at me and reduced me to tears, but I learnt more in the first 2 lessons than I had in the previous 3 years of weekly lessons. She pulled apart my riding to the point where I honestly thought nothing was right and then she put it back together so I was riding the correct way.

Her time was very very valuable, 100 an hour valuable, you had to undergo an assessment to be able to ride at that stables and the horses you rode averaged 40k. So she didnt suffer fools gladly, she had waiting lists 2 years long and those who didnt try 110% were told not to come back untill they were willing to put everything into it.
She was very blunt about weight, if you were over her weight limit you were told not to come back untill you were under it.
She also firmly believed that if you got off the horse and your legs still supported you then you hadnt been working hard enough. Many times I got off those horses with my abs burning and promptly collapsed in a heap because my legs wouldnt hold me up.

Her horses were so used to it that the didnt bat an eyelid at people ending up on the floor underneath them.

RIDE your horse FORWARDS and keep him STRAIGHT

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post #18 of 23 Old 08-15-2013, 08:23 AM
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Im sorry, but you dont have to be a DB to be an effective teacher. Of ANYTHING. Period.

If you learn best being abused by someone, more power to you. But it is completely out of line to suggest there are two ways to go about this...an "effective dbag", or an ineffective, dishonest fool blowing rainbow dust up our rears.

My last BO was a great person, spent a lot of money and travel time to take reining lessons. She invested in new gear and a high speed (mil speak lol) lease horse. Week after week, I watched her enthusiasm and spirit die, as her trainer pushed and pushed....telling her she HAD to show, that she HAD to spur her horse more, push, push push. Yelling at her and everything! She was so discouraged, she started losing her desire to learn! She felt that she must suck if the trainer was treating her like that all the time.

Now dont get me wrong, she admittedly learned tons, especially since she never had formal lessons....but being beaten down is not the best way to learn, for her, or many others. This isnt boot camp!
PS, I dont give a crap if someone is the Queen of the Known World, that does not give them the right to mistreat me, be it horse riding or graduate studies, Id take my money elsewhere.

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post #19 of 23 Old 08-15-2013, 10:46 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by faye View Post
Sorry, if you dont want to be pushed then find some silly little girl who will tell you the sun shines out of your behind and everything is fine.

I pay good money to improve my riding, I dont want anyone telling me it something is good unless it is 110% perfect.

The best instructor I ever had screamed at me and reduced me to tears, but I learnt more in the first 2 lessons than I had in the previous 3 years of weekly lessons. She pulled apart my riding to the point where I honestly thought nothing was right and then she put it back together so I was riding the correct way.

Her time was very very valuable, 100 an hour valuable, you had to undergo an assessment to be able to ride at that stables and the horses you rode averaged 40k. So she didnt suffer fools gladly, she had waiting lists 2 years long and those who didnt try 110% were told not to come back untill they were willing to put everything into it.
She was very blunt about weight, if you were over her weight limit you were told not to come back untill you were under it.
She also firmly believed that if you got off the horse and your legs still supported you then you hadnt been working hard enough. Many times I got off those horses with my abs burning and promptly collapsed in a heap because my legs wouldnt hold me up.

Her horses were so used to it that the didnt bat an eyelid at people ending up on the floor underneath them.
Well unfortunately I wasn't paying that much for her. I was paying 100$ a week. And I'm curious, what was her weight limit?
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post #20 of 23 Old 08-15-2013, 01:07 PM
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Originally Posted by demonwolfmoon View Post
Im sorry, but you dont have to be a DB to be an effective teacher. Of ANYTHING. Period.

If you learn best being abused by someone, more power to you. But it is completely out of line to suggest there are two ways to go about this...an "effective dbag", or an ineffective, dishonest fool blowing rainbow dust up our rears.

My last BO was a great person, spent a lot of money and travel time to take reining lessons. She invested in new gear and a high speed (mil speak lol) lease horse. Week after week, I watched her enthusiasm and spirit die, as her trainer pushed and pushed....telling her she HAD to show, that she HAD to spur her horse more, push, push push. Yelling at her and everything! She was so discouraged, she started losing her desire to learn! She felt that she must suck if the trainer was treating her like that all the time.

Now dont get me wrong, she admittedly learned tons, especially since she never had formal lessons....but being beaten down is not the best way to learn, for her, or many others. This isnt boot camp!
PS, I dont give a crap if someone is the Queen of the Known World, that does not give them the right to mistreat me, be it horse riding or graduate studies, Id take my money elsewhere.
I don't know if I would classify that is "abusive" so much as it was a bad "fit" of trainer and student. If someone's goal is to do reining, I would just assume they meant, ultimately, to show. If someone is at the point they can do "x" or "y", but hesitate, would you lie and tell them no problem b/c they will be competing against people that are equally as hesitant to do "x" or "y"? Or, would you push them? I've intentionally "lightly asked" a horse b/c I knew their ability and hesitated to "turn it on" full throttle. And, I have had that met w some not so kind words and zero understanding or sympathy, to put it mildly. At some point you say, "okay, crap, I will do it afraid, jackass", and you do. For me, if I hadn't been pushed with "abusive" tone and choice of words when necessary, I would have never "grown". And, I have on occasion backed out, gotten mad, and sulked. A coward dies a million deaths....so for some of us...thank heavens for the well timed "abuse" - we needed it. Others may not.

There is just as much horse sense as ever, but the horses have most of it.
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