Questionable trainer behavior....help! - Page 3 - The Horse Forum
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post #21 of 118 Old 04-14-2016, 01:04 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Overread View Post
I'd agree with the others; get out of there and get a new teacher.

This one sounds unsuitable for a novice and like she's not got the best of temperaments with horses either. She's setting you up to fail by ignoring you for the greater part of the lesson that you are paying for and then blaming you for not doing something correctly that she's not taught you properly in the first place.

The rough treatment of horses sounds heavy handed and out of order as well; though there are times when one might well need to be more physical with a horse that a novice might not pick up on every time; however from what you describe there is a potentially excessive amount going on at this stables


I would leave and find a new teacher and, as said, try to get as much one to one as you can. Group sessions in anything are never really ideal because the teacher can only focus on one student at a time and even the most conciousness can end up focusing on one or two more than the others. You can also find that varied skill levels within the group mean that more "advanced" students get ignored or made to repeat basic lessons; whilst more basic are focused upon. Of course that can lead to problems if the teacher assumes a student is more advanced than they really are when left to their own devices.



New site - better teacher - private lessons = having more fun and learning faster and better .
Thanks. All very good points! Best wishes.
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post #22 of 118 Old 04-14-2016, 01:07 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Textan49 View Post
I agree completely with the others. It is time to find another instructor and facility. Thirty five dollars for an hour of instruction is a bargain, but only if you are actually getting instruction for that hour. Her treatment of the horses is totally uncalled for. Lesson horses certainly can get stubborn and can need correcting at times, but what she is doing is not appropriate correction and not something that should be instilled in the students. Lastly, there is no place in a riding lesson for insulting comments. Unfortunately, this is not a situation that can be changed by dialog. She sounds like the type of person that would quickly inform you that she has experience and you are a beginner and have no right to question her.

As for group versus private lessons . . . I agree with the others, although a small group with the right instructor can work well too. Right now I think it is more important to change instructors. The choice is entirely up for you to decide what works the best for you at this point. I have ridden under several instructors in my time, both in group and private lessons and have also changed disciplines. Some of the instruction was better than others but I learned from all of it. You have plenty of options ahead of you if you continue riding. Good luck and enjoy.
"Unfortunately, this is not a situation that can be changed by dialog. She sounds like the type of person that would quickly inform you that she has experience and you are a beginner and have no right to question her."
Thanks! My thoughts, exactly. I'm anticipating that. Did your trainers raise a stink when you decided to train somewhere else? Best wishes.
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post #23 of 118 Old 04-14-2016, 01:27 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by kisiahc View Post
YOU NEED TO FIND A NEW INSTRUCTOR!! I pay $10 more per lesson and am being trained by a very good instructor who gets on my butt when I am wrong but also tells me when I am doing something right. This lady sounds like a nightmare and that is not the right way to correct a horse. I am no expert but I know enough to say what she is doing is abuse! Plus, the exact thing you pay for is an hour (or 45 minutes or whatever) of undivided attention which you are not getting!
I have no issues with strict teachers (although I'm hard on myself when I underperform). It's good for you! She gives both negative and positive feedback and she has yet to really yell at me. Apparently, I have the choice of two lesson horses--I'm guessing this is due to style and skill level. I'm using the other horse now because she sold mine. :/ I can't help but feel she should be punctual like I am--even if she's just silently observing and I'm only tacking up. We are expected to tack up and groom the horse before we saddle up and groom once more after the lesson. She offers a horsemanship class which is really just children and has them feed the horses, move them around and such. Free labor. ?
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post #24 of 118 Old 04-14-2016, 01:31 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Surrealle View Post
Agree with the others, I would find someone else and not talk to her about why. It will not change her mind or methods and I for one am always reluctant to burn bridges unless I have no choice.

Find someone else whose methods you're more comfortable with. They do exist (I've got one, myself).
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Thanks. I am the same way! I guess I'll see if I can sit in on some lessons elsewhere. I definitely don't want to meet a new instructor and say, 'so....do you abuse your horses?' Best wishes.
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post #25 of 118 Old 04-14-2016, 01:38 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by LoriF View Post
I will slap a horse in a heartbeat if they are deserving of it but they have to be being pretty ornery or disrespectful to get a slap. A male horse will drop a little sometimes when relaxing and that is not deserving of a slap, that's just being mean.
I just started taking private lessons once a week. kind of expensive, but worth it. It hasn't happened but I think if I was yanking on the horses mouth, I would get yelled at. What she did with that horse during your lesson was just stupid, that horse had no idea why he was being attacked. No disrespect on you, but chances are good that you were doing something to irritate him because you are new to riding. A good trainer will tell you how to correct a horse right in the moment and tell you how to praise him as soon as he's moving correctly.

Find another trainer, find another place so you can enjoy the learning process.

As far as the idea of horses being doomed to a life of labor, I don't really agree. I've found that when horses are well cared for and treated fairly, they actually enjoy the company of humans.
Thanks. Yes, I probably was upsetting the horse! I don't mind you saying so. I hate starting a new hobby and starting out as a beginner all over again, though. Regarding the 'doomed to a life of labor' comment, I certainly hope so! That's comforting. Best wishes!
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post #26 of 118 Old 04-14-2016, 01:45 AM Thread Starter
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I haven't questioned her on her methods yet and thanks! I think so, too. Best wishes!
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post #27 of 118 Old 04-14-2016, 01:47 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Overread View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scubasmitten View Post
She's the dominant, aggressive type that would surely have a problem with me questioning anything.
I forgot to mention earlier but this is another fialing in any teacher. Any teacher that refuses to or shows an air of refusing to answer questions or challenges with regard to methods is a poor teacher. It generally shows a lack of confidence and understanding on their part and often underlines how there are gaps in their own understanding that they are not willing to confront.

Teachers should be encouraging of questions; they should welcome them even if they question the methods they use and should always be willing to answer in more depth to the curious student.

A teacher who can't or who fails to or who discourages (directly or by indirect mannerisms - like cussing/swearing and being dismissive/insulting) is just setting you up to fail.
Thanks! I think so, too. I have not confronted her yet. I could be totally wrong in assuming a backlash will happen. Best wishes.
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post #28 of 118 Old 04-14-2016, 02:16 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Dreamcatcher Arabians View Post
I'm not going to jump on the "find another instructor" bandwagon just yet, there's 2 sides to every story.

I have been known to slap the fire out of a horse who needs it. But to earn a real good face slap from me, they have to have bitten or in some way convinced me that they will be biting soon and generally be acting REALLY aggressive. Since I wasn't there, I won't say the slap was inappropriate but, since I also own 10 horses and can't recall the last time I slapped one all the way to Texas, it probably is inappropriate if it happens frequently.

As for kicking the horse......yeah....I don't like it but I don't necessarily think that in itself is abusive. I don't belly kick my horses, or chest kick them either, mainly because they'd practically have to be a mini in order for my short legs to reach. Again, if it happens a lot, it's probably inappropriate. There are other ways to discipline, better ways.

Slapping a stallion on the penis is an accepted (not by me, btw) way to get them to 'put it away', it's been taught for years. Again, I don't do it, but I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of horse people I know who don't. And they do it to a gelding who gets too comfortable too. I tell my stallion, "Quit it, you're not getting paid." and redirect his thoughts to work and that solves it.

First time posting and leaves you to try it out for 80% of the lesson. She introduced the concept, let you try it out to get the hang of it and at the end let you know it wasn't perfect. So? She probably didn't care if you were on the right diagonal, she just wanted you to get the hang of going up & down with the footfalls. Now that it's been introduced, she can start giving you refinements.

Yelling at the other students....well, if they're like me they tend to get focused and forget she's there. If she wanted my attention she'd yell and probably have to pull me in to the center to get it. If she's not yelling at you, don't worry about it.

Being insulting to the other students. I had a trainer tell me once that I looked like a 'monkey doing something (you insert the expletive) to a football'. Not very nice, but I got the picture (oh boy did I!) and fixed my equitation, PDQ.

And ditto what Chasin' Ponies said about this, " I feel guilt, as part of the human race, for removing them from their natural setting to be given only the choice of labor or death.". I won't even go there.

THIS right here, "I have a lot on my plate right now and my life is a mess," tells me you're in an overly sensitive place right now and probably way over reacting to what's going on around you at the barn. For right now, just concentrate on you and learning to ride. Tune out the other stuff until your own life settles down and straightens out. If, after you're on a more even keel, you still feel she's inappropriate and you're not enjoying yourself then go find another trainer and barn. I don't think she's totally insensitive as you say she's aware of your turmoil right now and has offered you a trail ride rather than a structured lesson. It sounds like she is trying to accommodate your needs right now.
I'm going with inappropriate being that I had just led him to the arena and he decided 'Nope! Not going any further.' when she kicked him, slapped him in the face and yelled 'move your GD a$$!" I will give it one more lesson and see how it goes. I can understand she may have wanted me to adjust and try posting on my own (second posting lesson), but I do still wish she'd have informed me earlier, giving me time to end the lesson on a good note and/or an opportunity to correct it. I feel my comment sharing my concerns/feelings on horses is healthier than bottling them up and letting them fester...and it allows people to give me an alternate perspective. I realize it is probably considered by some to be silly or ignorant, but it can't be terribly uncommon with beginners? I know. I'm a worry wart! Thank you and best wishes.
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post #29 of 118 Old 04-14-2016, 02:19 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dreamcatcher Arabians View Post
I'm not going to jump on the "find another instructor" bandwagon just yet, there's 2 sides to every story.

I have been known to slap the fire out of a horse who needs it. But to earn a real good face slap from me, they have to have bitten or in some way convinced me that they will be biting soon and generally be acting REALLY aggressive. Since I wasn't there, I won't say the slap was inappropriate but, since I also own 10 horses and can't recall the last time I slapped one all the way to Texas, it probably is inappropriate if it happens frequently.

As for kicking the horse......yeah....I don't like it but I don't necessarily think that in itself is abusive. I don't belly kick my horses, or chest kick them either, mainly because they'd practically have to be a mini in order for my short legs to reach. Again, if it happens a lot, it's probably inappropriate. There are other ways to discipline, better ways.

Slapping a stallion on the penis is an accepted (not by me, btw) way to get them to 'put it away', it's been taught for years. Again, I don't do it, but I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of horse people I know who don't. And they do it to a gelding who gets too comfortable too. I tell my stallion, "Quit it, you're not getting paid." and redirect his thoughts to work and that solves it.

First time posting and leaves you to try it out for 80% of the lesson. She introduced the concept, let you try it out to get the hang of it and at the end let you know it wasn't perfect. So? She probably didn't care if you were on the right diagonal, she just wanted you to get the hang of going up & down with the footfalls. Now that it's been introduced, she can start giving you refinements.

Yelling at the other students....well, if they're like me they tend to get focused and forget she's there. If she wanted my attention she'd yell and probably have to pull me in to the center to get it. If she's not yelling at you, don't worry about it.

Being insulting to the other students. I had a trainer tell me once that I looked like a 'monkey doing something (you insert the expletive) to a football'. Not very nice, but I got the picture (oh boy did I!) and fixed my equitation, PDQ.

And ditto what Chasin' Ponies said about this, " I feel guilt, as part of the human race, for removing them from their natural setting to be given only the choice of labor or death.". I won't even go there.

THIS right here, "I have a lot on my plate right now and my life is a mess," tells me you're in an overly sensitive place right now and probably way over reacting to what's going on around you at the barn. For right now, just concentrate on you and learning to ride. Tune out the other stuff until your own life settles down and straightens out. If, after you're on a more even keel, you still feel she's inappropriate and you're not enjoying yourself then go find another trainer and barn. I don't think she's totally insensitive as you say she's aware of your turmoil right now and has offered you a trail ride rather than a structured lesson. It sounds like she is trying to accommodate your needs right now.
& oh yeah....good to know about the male parts. It was a bit of a shock for a newbie to witness early on!
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post #30 of 118 Old 04-14-2016, 02:26 AM
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Originally Posted by Scubasmitten View Post
Thanks. I agree, but I just know it's going to cause a crap storm. I saw my friends 7-year-old daughter slap a horse in the face for no reason yesterday, and that is wrong on many levels.
What did you or your friend do about it?
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