View Full Version : When you have more than one trainer/riding instructor...

Empressive Award
Dec. 7, 2009, 10:47 AM
I'm looking for thoughtsand shared experiences from those of you who have currently, or have had twoor more trainers or instructors that you rode with regularly and at the same time.
I currently ride with two trainers and while they teach most everything the same, there are a few differences and I'm not sure how to take the information and put it to use, or whether to just rely on my judgement and what works for me when I ride my mare.
One trainer has worked with my mare and given me instruction both on my own horseand on other horses, while the other trainer has NOT seen my mare, riddenher, etc.I strictly just ride her horses for the time being.
I'm debating on whether to bring this second trainer in on my horse's training and have her help me move forward with her or not and possibly risk having to back track and "correct" things the other trainer has "installed" in both me and the mare and if its going to be a good thing or bad thing.Both trainers are excellant and have helped me improve my riding 100%, but now its time to get back to work with my mare and I'm tired of having other peopleride her.
I know the general advice to young horse people is to ride as many horses and with as many people as you can for knowledge and experience, but I'm concerned about conflict of teaching styles and confusing both myself and my green bean mare.

In your experience how has it worked for you? Good,bad? Do you recommend it or to stick with one instructor at a time? Thanks!

Dec. 7, 2009, 10:57 AM
In the same riding discipline? In the same town/local area? But different barns/programs? Personally, I'd just stick with one. A positive path to improvement isn't always the same from trainer to trainer, even if the trainers are equally "good", and IMO working in two separate programs like this can actually slow progress or confuse and frustrate a horse or rider for this reason. If they are in the same barn/program? That can be different as they usually work together, subscribe to the same philosophies, and can work together. Now, using one trainer for jumpers and another for some Dressage training I can understand because each specialize in a different yet complementary activity...but in the same discipline with the same end goals? Not so much...

To me, clinicing is different. While one might not have the opportunity or the funds or the locale to ride full time with say, an Olympic level rider, an occasional clinic with one is within reach for most of us. If I'm going to shell out money and time for a clinic, I'd want to make sure the clinician has something to offer that my regular trainer doesn't. And if someone else in the area I could ride with regularly had more to offer than my regular trainer, I'd just switch to that person rather than trying to ride with them both. JMHO.

Dec. 7, 2009, 11:09 AM
I have two in two different states for 6 years and I feel they have made me a complete rider with their different approaches.

Dec. 7, 2009, 12:43 PM
I know how you feel!
I Have one trainer at home that knows my horse and has worked with me for a few years and I have one in college. My college trainer has never seen my horse or seen me ride him or anything. They both teach pretty much the same but some things are a tad different, so its hard adjusting to each trainer! But I do ride different horses at the different barns so that plays a role, since most of them dont "ride" the same as the others.

Dec. 7, 2009, 01:01 PM
If they offer conflicting views, it is an opportunity for constructive discussion. Ask them to explain what they are teaching. You can politely say, well Trainer 1 told me to do A, how is that different from B? I'm not doing a good job of saying this, but if you choose to use two trainers...when they offer conflicting views, don't just bite your tongue and do whatever they say. Don't be defensive but don't be afraid to ask why they want you to do something. This could be a good learning experience.

Dec. 7, 2009, 02:52 PM
i have three or four trainers.
I have the head trainer at the barn where i board who teaches me once a week, and another trainer that works with my horse and teaches me once a week.

I also do iea, so I have the trainers at the barn that hosts that.

What I do is I adjust my riding style depending on whose lesson I'm in. One trainer in particular makes more sense to me so I tend to ride more in his style than the others.
It can get complicated though!
pm me if you want more specifics.

Dec. 7, 2009, 09:18 PM
I also have two trainers. Both are amazing horsewomen and bring alot to the table. I think it is important to have more than one set of eyes watching you. One may pick up on something that the other does not or one may explain something to you in a diffrent way that all of a sudden clicks!
I want to be able to add to the tools in my toolbox!

I usually take a flat and jumping lesson with one and a down a dirty flat lesson with the other.

Dec. 7, 2009, 09:25 PM
I have two. I have a hunter/jumper trainer in my town and an eventing trainer about an hour away.
The eventing trainer has been helping me a lot with dressage, and also with xc, which is helpful for my foxhunting.
They both know about each other and I'm very honest about the whole thing. But they both have different styles and both have helped me in very different ways.
Lately it seems to be working out that I have been lessoning more with one than the other but that is just due to scheduling, (both hers and mine) and this job thing I have that really interferes with my riding.

Dec. 7, 2009, 09:41 PM
I have 2. One for the summer when I go to Maine, the other for the rest of the year. I've been riding with the summer trainer for much longer, and most of the time when I was with her during the summer I was at a lesson mill barn so I trusted her judgment a lot more than my winter instructors. Now that I started with a real show barn during the winter as well as the summer I'm more on the edge. The winter trainer has a lot more experience and has been in the business a lot longer. If if comes to who to trust on something, it would probably be her. This works out though because the summer trainer knows that we ride with the winter one most of the time and respects her judgment and experience even though they've never actually met.

Dec. 7, 2009, 11:14 PM
I used to have two. I found it be extremely beneficial since one trainer is a little more hands off, the other was more about fine tuning. I feel kind of like each one filled in the holes, and gave me a much greater understanding of riding that I didn't have before. I'm currently back to just one, but it wasn't my choice!

I would say for you that you know your mare, what direction you want to take her in and what kind of training she would benefit from. So which trainer do you think may fit the bill better?