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View Full Version : Anyone going to Mclain Ward clinic at OSF tomorrow?



Not So Practical Horse(WO)man
Dec. 4, 2009, 10:26 PM
Just wondering...I can only catch until the last group tomorrow but will be there all day Sunday! All you have to do to audit is bring an unwrapped toy for Toy for Tots. I was a bit blown away to see the clinic price at $900 considering how generous Mclain and his father are in this area but then saw the thing about the donations and was pleased. A few people I talked to thought this was just a way to promote their new trainer at Old Salem Farm but who cares!? Its Mclain Ward!

Jumphigh83
Dec. 4, 2009, 10:33 PM
Seriously? 900$? Holy cow.

MHM
Dec. 4, 2009, 10:34 PM
I'm not going, but I love the Toys for Tots idea! :cool:

Please report back on the clinic. :)

Not So Practical Horse(WO)man
Dec. 4, 2009, 10:34 PM
$800 clinic fee
$100 stabling fee

:( I really, really wanted to ride in it too

BonhamsMom
Dec. 4, 2009, 10:56 PM
I was going to teach lessons tomorrow but most of my students canceled for some reason so I'm going to bring a toy initially intended for my one year old (he gets enough, trust me!) and hunker down all day! I look forward to meeting anyone from the COTH boards. In case anyone wants to say "hello", I have long red hair, haha.

YankeeLawyer
Dec. 4, 2009, 11:36 PM
I love the Toy for Tots idea.

Pony Soprano
Dec. 5, 2009, 02:12 AM
Wish I was there! My husband does Toys for Tots through MC, but I have to admit that I would probably scrimp enough up to pay for a clinic with him regardless of the cost.

supershorty628
Dec. 5, 2009, 03:26 PM
I'm riding in it..

Lucassb
Dec. 5, 2009, 03:41 PM
I watched today's session (and Supershorty *rocked* her session, particularly the gymnastics!) and thought the clinic was one of the best I've seen in a long time.

McLain is a terrific instructor and set the various exercises in a way that it benefitted both horses and riders. He was careful to illustrate how the rider's position, far from being just a nicety, was integral to the quality of the horse's jump. I also loved how he really helped the riders establish accuracy and control without sacrificing softness or position.

He wanted a certain ride, and more than once, had riders repeat a jump to demonstrate a particular frame or distance. In other words, it wasn't enough to ride "whatever distance came up" well... he wanted to see that you could dictate a particular distance - in order to teach the horse something and create a better jump.

All in all I thought it was terrific, and plan to go back tomorrow.

MHM
Dec. 5, 2009, 03:59 PM
He was careful to illustrate how the rider's position, far from being just a nicety, was integral to the quality of the horse's jump.

Interesting. I will say Mclain himself is usually in a pretty correct position, unlike some jumper riders with less, er, conventional style. ;)

Thanks for the recap!

How many riders were in each group? And how many groups?

Lucassb
Dec. 5, 2009, 04:23 PM
Interesting. I will say Mclain himself is usually in a pretty correct position, unlike some jumper riders with less, er, conventional style. ;)

Thanks for the recap!

How many riders were in each group? And how many groups?

It's true - one of the things I enjoy about watching MW ride is that he jumps the biggest tracks in the world looking like he is riding the Maclay finals. But, as he illustrated a bunch of times today, it is not just about creating a pretty picture; he wants to give the horse the best chance of jumping clean (and fast) ... and that requires a rider to be in balance and executing correctly.

As an example, in the middle section there was one rider on a longish backed, fairly young/green horse. It was easy to see why she frequently got a little ahead of her horse when the jumps got bigger. However, the difference in the horse's jumping style was enormous after she worked on backing up her shoulders, riding with a MUCH shorter rein (ie, keeping her hands out in front of her) and holding her position in the air to land in a deep heel, balanced and ready to go to the next jump. The (lovely) horse looked like a different animal when they got done.

I did not see all the sessions personally, as I had several to ride this morning before going to watch, and I left before the last group started. The groups were reasonably sized though - 5 or 6 riders/session from what I saw, and he provided a LOT of personal attention to each one.

MHM
Dec. 5, 2009, 04:38 PM
Yes, I think people sometimes forget that the correct position evolved over generations because it was the most effective way to ride.

For example, it's not that somebody woke up one morning and said, "You know, I think all riders should keep their heels down because it looks pretty!" You have a much better chance of staying on your horse with your weight in your heels- that's why you should do it that way. Pretty is a by-product of a correct position.

Certainly some talented people can take some artistic license and get away with it, but for most people, the correct position works the best.

Mclain usually demonstrates it quite well. :yes:

Thanks again for the report. :)

Not So Practical Horse(WO)man
Dec. 5, 2009, 06:13 PM
Oh I wish I could have seen it! I would have much rather watched the clinic than take the Biology SAT II lol. I showed up at the end but they canceled the last open jumper session :(

Supershorty, give a description of yourself and your horse so I can look for you tomorrow!

And if anyone wants a COTH hookup, I'll be wearing purple Hunter wellies, have blond hair, and be very, very tall!

Lucassb
Dec. 5, 2009, 06:25 PM
Oh I wish I could have seen it! I would have much rather watched the clinic than take the Biology SAT II lol. I showed up at the end but they canceled the last open jumper session :(

Supershorty, give a description of yourself and your horse so I can look for you tomorrow!

And if anyone wants a COTH hookup, I'll be wearing purple Hunter wellies, have blond hair, and be very, very tall!

I'll keep an eye out for you - I am going to try to go again tomorrow at least for a session or two. I'll be the middle aged adult (5'4", long dark hair prob. in a pony with a Benchmark Farm ball cap on, and I'll be in boots and breeches since I'll be coming straight from my lesson... ) I'll be standing near the in gate, not watching from the club room above - I like to be closer to the arena to see what is going on.

BonhamsMom
Dec. 5, 2009, 06:34 PM
Today's sessions were fantastic. LucassB, I wish I had bumped into you today. Mclain teaches with such clarity. When he wants you to do something he uses excellent metaphors and concise, kind language that gets the point across quickly.

I loved watching him ride an old mount of his (I didn't catch the name, but it was a beautiful chestnut) and he explained politely that if the owner just changed a few pieces of tack--namely going from an elevator bit, which Mclain said he was not a huge fan of, to a pelham, and adding a martingale--the rider would have had such a different experience at the clinic.

I wish I could return tomorrow. Have fun, everyone!

Not So Practical Horse(WO)man
Dec. 5, 2009, 06:37 PM
I'll keep an eye out for you - I am going to try to go again tomorrow at least for a session or two. I'll be the middle aged adult (5'4", long dark hair prob. in a pony with a Benchmark Farm ball cap on, and I'll be in boots and breeches since I'll be coming straight from my lesson... ) I'll be standing near the in gate, not watching from the club room above - I like to be closer to the arena to see what is going on.

You can watch at the ingate? I had never been too OSF before and thought myself lucky to even find the viewing area lol :) How would one be able to watch at the ingate?

Not So Practical Horse(WO)man
Dec. 5, 2009, 06:39 PM
Supershorty- I'm watching your gymnastics video from the clinic now. You and your horse are lovely :) I can tell what a team you are!

supershorty628
Dec. 5, 2009, 08:45 PM
Thank you (and thanks, Susan)! I was really pleased with her - we got back in sync pretty quickly (I went back to school early Sunday morning last week, so this was the first time I rode her since then) and she was really wonderful! By the way, the last session wasn't canceled, but there were only 2 people in it (me and Michael, I think), so we got combined with the group prior to that. I don't know if McLain will have us do fences that are a little bigger tomorrow or how that will work, but either way, it's completely worth going.

In case anyone wants to see the sort of exercises McLain had us do, here's a video my mom took: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mHKQy_10SIM

mroades
Dec. 5, 2009, 10:00 PM
shorty, you look great and your mom is an excellent videographer!

supershorty628
Dec. 5, 2009, 10:05 PM
Thanks! My mom is the best - at shows, she helps set warm up jumps and then sprints over to the ring to film, and at home, she keeps Nikki in shape for me while I'm at school - she's so great!

MHM
Dec. 5, 2009, 10:16 PM
Nice video. :)

I see Mclain was wearing boots and breeches. Did he get on any horses in the clinic?

Also, how does OSF look after the big remodel? Did they add/change/enlarge anything, or just spruce up the existing structures? I haven't been there in a couple of years.

supershorty628
Dec. 5, 2009, 10:18 PM
Yes, McLain got on a horse in my section that was in his barn at one point. That was the only horse that he got on today (as far as I know), but he rode beautifully, as one would expect.

I think the lounge and interior look different and bigger, but I also haven't spent much time at Old Salem other than in the show ring...

MHM
Dec. 6, 2009, 05:05 PM
Bump.

Any updates after today's activities?

How big was the pile of Toys for Tots?

MissIndependence
Dec. 6, 2009, 07:16 PM
I audited the clinic he did down here in Texas last week at Hillcrest Farm. It was great. I thought he paid a lot of attention to the unique qualities of each horse and while he expected people to be on point - I actually thought he was pretty nice and even more patient than I expected. He really busted the groups on paying attention to what made their particular horses tick - and being disciplined about making sure they accomodated that to make the horse relax and give them the best possible chance to jump correctly.

He got on several horses - and actually jumped one up very big. I would frankly have paid to just watch him ride for 2 days. His correct form, softness, patience and incredible discipline was very very inspiring. It is easy to see why he has achieved what he has. I enjoyed it and actually learned a lot. I had gone to a clinic with him several years ago and this time I thought he was way more outgoing, comfortable and spoke a lot more to everyone. Just seemed like he was more comfortable with the whole clinic environment. Really really interesting! I asked him about some things with my horse and he gave me some great feedback and ideas to try as well.

kealea31
Dec. 6, 2009, 09:13 PM
I went today, but didn't get there until lunch time. The riders were very good, and he did get on a chestnut horse in the last group, and of course he rode beautifully. The biggest thing that impressed me though, was how nice he was to each rider, and how positive his comments were. It's been almost 8 years since I've ridden in a jumper clinic, and the clinicians were not always nice. Hoping to get my new mare out next spring.

Lucassb
Dec. 6, 2009, 09:16 PM
Bump.

Any updates after today's activities?

How big was the pile of Toys for Tots?

There were several *large* tables piled high with toys for the TFT program... which was lovely to see.

I only got to watch the second group again today and thought the difference in a couple of the horses was really interesting. One rider came with a different bridle (from a three ring to a pelham) that McLain had suggested yesterday. I believe this was a horse that had been in his barn at one time and switching the tack made a noticeable difference in her level of control. I thought it was very nice that McLain actually thought to bring one of those curb chain guards for her from home... when she was first warming up, the horse clearly wasn't loving the chain but once the guard was on, she had much better control than the previous day and the horse was clearly happier.

On the flat, there was a lot of emphasis on getting the horses loose, relaxed and bending, supple to the riders' aids. Several riders were cautioned to keep track of their horse's hind ends, not just the head and neck. After some basic work on the flat, the jumping started and was more course- oriented compared to yesterday, as you would expect. He started with simple stuff, asking for conservative distances to basic warm up jumps - literally starting with a cross rail, but moving to exercises where the riders had to pay attention to track, position and making good decisions. Again there was a big emphasis on body position and the rider's influence on the horse's jump, as well as maintaining enough composure to pass on the first distance the rider saw if it wasn't the ideal one.

I thought McLain did a really super job of tailoring the instruction to the fairly broad range of horses and riders in the group and definitely thought that it was one of the better clinics I've been to.

Not So Practical Horse(WO)man
Dec. 6, 2009, 09:21 PM
WOW! Thats all I can say! I learned so much. The first clinic especially was worth it for me as that is more the level I'm doing right now. I went to the barn and rode my own horse after that and I think it was the best ride I've had in awhile. It is amazing what you can learn and absorb just by watching others. I'm definitely going to pay attention and look for more clinics from him, would LOVE to ride in one and am kicking myself for not scrounging up the money for this one. Oh well, live and learn!

MHM
Dec. 6, 2009, 09:52 PM
There were several *large* tables piled high with toys for the TFT program... which was lovely to see.



Aww. Yay!

Props to the person who came up with that idea. :cool:

00Jumper
Dec. 6, 2009, 09:53 PM
Thanks for posting this thread! I will be riding in the clinic 12/19-20 at LRJ Ent. with McLain so I'm doubly excited for that weekend now!

Not So Practical Horse(WO)man
Dec. 6, 2009, 10:00 PM
Where do you find out about his clinics? I cant find info anywhere?

Brydelle Farm
Dec. 6, 2009, 10:47 PM
Thanks for posting this thread! I will be riding in the clinic 12/19-20 at LRJ Ent. with McLain so I'm doubly excited for that weekend now!

I'm coming to audit that clinic. Was suppose to go to his clinic in NJ at Gladstone but it got canx. So excited! Need some horsey stuff as riding here has been touch and go with the weather! C U soon!


Where do you find out about his clinics? I cant find info anywhere?

I found the one at USET at their site, I think. I found the one in DE via emailing with Mr. M. Ward once that one was canx. :) I felt it was a long shot but he responded. ;)

findlymine
Dec. 7, 2009, 01:38 AM
is there a website to contact him ??

neigh.neigh
Dec. 12, 2009, 05:50 PM
i found a website with pictures from the clinic if anyone wants to see them!
http://selphotography.com/

Brydelle Farm
Dec. 12, 2009, 08:03 PM
is there a website to contact him ??

I emailed him, it is on his FB page.

Not So Practical Horse(WO)man
Dec. 12, 2009, 09:13 PM
I emailed him, it is on his FB page.

Please let us know what you find out :)

Brydelle Farm
Dec. 12, 2009, 09:27 PM
Please let us know what you find out :)

That is how I found out about him being in DE next weekend. I emailed him after his clinic at Gladstone got canx. I was so bummed. He didn't have a website or a complete calendar of his clinics unfortunately. I would email him and let him know your location and see if he is going to be anywhere close by.

Not So Practical Horse(WO)man
Dec. 12, 2009, 09:41 PM
Well, I actually live about 10 minutes away from him lol.

Brydelle Farm
Dec. 12, 2009, 09:49 PM
Well, I actually live about 10 minutes away from him lol.

Jealous! ;)

Not So Practical Horse(WO)man
Dec. 12, 2009, 09:57 PM
Ehh, living close doesn't necessarily mean access lol. I would be afraid to even ask :(

Brydelle Farm
Dec. 12, 2009, 10:42 PM
Ehh, living close doesn't necessarily mean access lol. I would be afraid to even ask :(


Right!! Email him, he was very kind and polite, and VERY busy. I think you would be pleasantly surprised.

supershorty628
Dec. 27, 2009, 04:44 PM
Here are some videos from the courses day. I had to cut the video into 2 segments because otherwise the file was too large for YouTube, but you can still see the kind of exercises Mclain had us do. :)

Part 1: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=skgGRRDz-6s&feature=channel
Part 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-y8vJFiQOVc&feature=channel