One Trainer? Two trainers? Clinics?
This week I have a question for the AADA members which has been on my mind for a while.
How many trainers or coaches do you feel you need to be happy with your riding and successful in the show ring?
Personally, I remember as an Amateur I was loyal to a fault to whoever I took lessons with on a long term basis. Long term meaning a year or two. But I also took clinics with my favorite trainer/rider, Hilda Gurney, every six weeks. I found however, that sometimes there was conflicting information from my instructors. Then I bounced among trainers trying to find the right mix with the basics Hilda always taught.
As a professional, I have found two trainers who complement each other well with what I am trying to accomplish with all my horses and work with them bi-monthly or monthly.
My clients, who board at my barn, are also loyal and have been with me several years.
Riders I train at other facilities often take lessons with other trainers in the area. This seems to be a more and more prevalent trend. I do find however that riders, as I did, get confused with several sets of input. Some trainers only instruct for getting scores in the show ring. Others teach how to make the horse a long term athlete with exercises other than test movements.
Featured rider, Bonnie Halka says this about her multi trainer experience:
“With regards to multiple trainers, for me it is important to have one main trainer that knows me and knows my horse. This would be the trainer that I spend the most time with. She has the time with me to learn my personal goals, along with the ability of both me and my horse. With this main trainer I can establish a plan and build on it at every lesson. She learns my strengths and weaknesses and chooses the teaching methods that are most helpful to me. With that being said, it is so much fun and beneficial to go to clinics with experienced and established clinicians. I sometimes find that they teach the same thing but have different language or methods of accomplishing it. Even so there will be some that you understand and click with better than others. I also think it is ok to jump around with clinicians but not with your main person. No trainer is perfect. Riders must have realistic expectations.”
I would love to have your feedback on one trainer, multi trainers.
Until next time, enjoy the ride!