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View Full Version : Has anyone heard of this Maryland trainer?



AChestnutMare&ABlonde
Jan. 10, 2011, 10:51 AM
Sarah Wendernuk
www.effectiveriding.com

I saw an ad for her in the Equiery and decided to contact her as trainers in my area are hard to come by. I am going to try a lesson with her this weekend. Her website lists all of her background and experiences, but no photos or anything.

Just wanted to know if anyone has ridden with her.

I have the option of her coming to my farm or she will also let me trailer to her place which will be good for my young mare. I guess I will see after this weekend :)

Wish me luck and TIA!! :)

Noctis
Jan. 10, 2011, 11:23 AM
Haven't ridden with her, but definitely strange to see a site with NO photos of the actual trainer or students or ANYTHING that would give you a clue about their actual skills! People, develop a professional website that is actually informative! Its not too hard!

Good luck!

LexInVA
Jan. 10, 2011, 11:25 AM
You misspelled the name. She's just an enthusiast trying her hand at being a trainer since she has her own place now. I wouldn't expect too much. She's got no real history behind her as a trainer or rider and isn't even a member of any of the Equestrian organizations.

AChestnutMare&ABlonde
Jan. 10, 2011, 11:30 AM
Thanks to both of you! Sorry about the misspell.

I had a feeling she hadn't been training for awhile, but I figured I would at least have a "meet 'n greet" lesson and welcome someone's ideas. If I don't feel comfortable with it, I will keep looking. It's just hard to find a good trainer in the area who doesn't charge so much for just coming to the farm (as I could understand for gas, etc.)..or even one within 30 minutes to trailer to. :sigh:

If anyone also has any ideas and would like to know my area, please PM me. Thanks again! :D

yellowbritches
Jan. 10, 2011, 11:31 AM
I saw her ad a couple of months ago and looked up the website just for the hell of it. It seems like a load of crock to me. Most of the trainers she's worked with I've never heard of, and the rest of it was such fluff and goofiness that I couldn't believe she was using it to promote herself.

Where are you in MD? You can find lots of adequate, decent, and very good trainers in the state, and depending on where you are, it's easy to cross the state line and find more.

katie+tru
Jan. 10, 2011, 11:44 AM
People like this remind me of terribly cheesy, obnoxious car salesmen. Anyone who cites Parelli, Supernanny, and taking photos at the WEGs as proof of their abilities is a total joke. Same with these lists of trainers she's worked with, clinics she'd gone to, etc. Who cares? Anyone can sign up for a clinic if they have the money. I'd be asking for for names of horses and riders that she's moved through the levels successfully. That's the proof.

JWB
Jan. 10, 2011, 12:01 PM
Haha - My resume is about as impressive and I would not sell my snake oil to anyone!

She's a member of USEA but has no competitions listed....

Not sure what your goals are, but for eventing, I would not want to train with a coach who has not done it extensively themselves..... Too many rules, safety issues, etc.

Saw a local hunter trainer bring her kids out to an unrated schooling show and have to scramble when she found out that they were all in illegal bits for dressage, and later get a little girl DQd because she coached her through the SJ round.

AChestnutMare&ABlonde
Jan. 10, 2011, 01:21 PM
Wow. Thanks everyone for speaking my mind :D I guess I was a little worried on being "overly-expressive" but I was definitely worried getting involved with someone who doesn't have references, a name to their farm or where they teach at, no references of shows, competetions, levels, etc. In fact, she didn't even list a level I don't think?

I googled her and absolutely nothing came up.

My horses are in Pasadena..I have a trailer so I can take them off the property, as well. I used to have them out and also grew up riding between Davidsonville and all through South County, (primarily horse country) but that is such a long drive. I don't really want to go over a 30 min. drive, but I'll consider options of course.


People like this remind me of terribly cheesy, obnoxious car salesmen - That is EXACTLY what I was thinking. Kinda scammish, too. She was a little overly excited when she returned my e-mail as if she hadn't had any replies or clients in some time.

Who knows. The search goes on... :)

AChestnutMare&ABlonde
Jan. 10, 2011, 01:52 PM
Not sure what your goals are, but for eventing, I would not want to train with a coach who has not done it extensively themselves..... Too many rules, safety issues, etc.

Oh, and to answer this... I do have further goals as far as competing, but she has just recovered from Lymes and I think it messed with her confidence a little. It's been since June that we have been struggling and butting heads and she was diagnosed in August. I wanted to rule everything out medically before treating her odd antics as behavioral. We started with getting her teeth done, checking my saddle on her, joints, etc. So finally we tested her for EPM and Lymes. We received the go ahead from the vet and stopped the medcine at the end of December.

She has become so spooky when she used to be so brave, although green broke, but still willing to learn. Now she just throws her head in the air constantly acting as if I'm pulling on her when I know my hands are forward and soft, my seat soft, legs soft but there for contact. I ride in a "driving-the-horse-forward" seat all the time or else she doesn't feel the confidence from me to keep moving forward and becomes hesitant. I can't even walk her around the farm calmly on a nice day, but we are making progress as I am sticking to it. I make her walk by anything and everything, keep her focused and listening to me whether it be with my aids or just talking to her and praising her ALOT for every good thing she does, big or small. I even have her in a hackamore at the moment to hopefully get her mind off of that. If I could just have ONE day where we could have even a 15 minute peaceful ride around the farm..I'd be SO happy. :yes: I'm confident we'll get there, but I need a little help.

analise
Jan. 10, 2011, 02:47 PM
I know of a nice trainer, but she's in the Lisbon/Woodbine/Mt. Airy area, so probably farther than you want to drive.

And by nice I mean all her horses I've seen have seemed sane and the kids she brought to some schooling shows my barn put on all seemed safe and capable. And I watched her give a jumping lesson to a friend and liked what I saw.

Calamber
Jan. 10, 2011, 03:18 PM
Oh, and to answer this... I do have further goals as far as competing, but she has just recovered from Lymes and I think it messed with her confidence a little. It's been since June that we have been struggling and butting heads and she was diagnosed in August. I wanted to rule everything out medically before treating her odd antics as behavioral. We started with getting her teeth done, checking my saddle on her, joints, etc. So finally we tested her for EPM and Lymes. We received the go ahead from the vet and stopped the medcine at the end of December.

She has become so spooky when she used to be so brave, although green broke, but still willing to learn. Now she just throws her head in the air constantly acting as if I'm pulling on her when I know my hands are forward and soft, my seat soft, legs soft but there for contact. I ride in a "driving-the-horse-forward" seat all the time or else she doesn't feel the confidence from me to keep moving forward and becomes hesitant. I can't even walk her around the farm calmly on a nice day, but we are making progress as I am sticking to it. I make her walk by anything and everything, keep her focused and listening to me whether it be with my aids or just talking to her and praising her ALOT for every good thing she does, big or small. I even have her in a hackamore at the moment to hopefully get her mind off of that. If I could just have ONE day where we could have even a 15 minute peaceful ride around the farm..I'd be SO happy. :yes: I'm confident we'll get there, but I need a little help.

It sounds as though she is still at least body sore, if not more. Of course they can "remember" the pain, but this sounds more like something is still going on. Can you pull a blood panel to do an nutritional eval and see if she is serioulsy lacking something and has there been a second test to see if the Lyme titer has resolved to a normal level?

LexInVA
Jan. 10, 2011, 03:27 PM
She was a little overly excited when she returned my e-mail as if she hadn't had any replies or clients in some time.

Who knows. The search goes on... :)

She is new to training, as in she's not done it before. That's why she was so excited. Her training business is brand new, started several weeks ago. She has had little or no involvement with the horse industry other than being a fringe participant.

AChestnutMare&ABlonde
Jan. 10, 2011, 03:56 PM
It sounds as though she is still at least body sore, if not more. Of course they can "remember" the pain, but this sounds more like something is still going on. Can you pull a blood panel to do an nutritional eval and see if she is serioulsy lacking something and has there been a second test to see if the Lyme titer has resolved to a normal level?

I asked my vet and he assured me everyone asks that, but that there's no reason to re-test right away. I've been told this by other vets too? But I am still gaining some understanding to the disease. I;ve been paying as close attention as possible to her reactions...some are at objects that I can see she could be spooky or hesitant about, but other times I will ask her to trot some and she flips her head up and throws a mini tantrum. I just don't know...Sometimes I become discouraged and frustrated, but I know we'll make progress together. :cry:

dressageluv
Jan. 10, 2011, 04:11 PM
there are a few decent ones on the Eastern Shore:

Mogie Bearden-Mulle (sp)
Matt Bryner
Scott Chipps

All Eventers....who will come to you or you can trailer in.

dressageluv
Jan. 10, 2011, 04:12 PM
and also Kim Meier, who is a quadrapeligic but still teaches at her farm.

So does her Ex-Husband Marty Morani

Good Luck

Catie79
Jan. 10, 2011, 04:24 PM
No, I haven't heard of her, but I did giggle. Her resume is almost identical to mine. Riding for 25 years, degree in psychology, background in hunters and eventing (but I have one BN on my record!). I even did clinics with some of the same people, and got my instructor's license! What did all of this qualify me to do?

'Up down up down up down, pay attention to your pony, look up, smile!, can you put your hands on your head?, it's like doing the YMCA, good job!, up down up down up down.'

Get very dizzy doing lunge line lessons. :)

AChestnutMare&ABlonde
Jan. 10, 2011, 04:35 PM
What did all of this qualify me to do?

'Up down up down up down, pay attention to your pony, look up, smile!, can you put your hands on your head?, it's like doing the YMCA, good job!, up down up down up down.'

Get very dizzy doing lunge line lessons. :)

:lol: :lol: :lol:
I agree, I am only a few years short of experience from the rest of you it seems and I only feel comfortable teach children, if that.. but PROMISING change in your horse and riding? Idk...

But I rather just stick to horses. :) Even the projects I do take on, I always have a trainer. :yes:

Thanks again! I will look them up!

teddygirl
Jan. 10, 2011, 04:59 PM
You have a pm

S A McKee
Jan. 10, 2011, 05:07 PM
You misspelled the name. She's just an enthusiast trying her hand at being a trainer since she has her own place now. I wouldn't expect too much. She's got no real history behind her as a trainer or rider and isn't even a member of any of the Equestrian organizations.

Really ???

4118027 WENGERNUK, SARAH
Print Card Professional
Senior
State: MD All Breeds/Disciplines USDF Participating FEI ID Number: N/A
Passport Number: N/A

I have no dog in this fight Lex but at least look the person up before you make claims. You do know how to use the USEF search function right? Maybe not......

yellowbritches
Jan. 10, 2011, 05:10 PM
Mogie Bearden's great! Scott Chipps, no, not so much. Never heard of the other guy.

In defense of Lex, anyone can join and anyone can claim to be a pro (though, usually it seems more like people trying to pass of being an ammy!). Does she have any actual results behind that membership? I know I searched her on USEA when I first saw her name and her website...nadda.

KateDB
Jan. 10, 2011, 06:12 PM
Sort of in your area, I would suggest www.allansporthorses.com (http://www.allansporthorses.com). They are in Brandywine and work regularly with Sharon White, in fact sometimes Sharon goes there to teach!

LexInVA
Jan. 10, 2011, 06:15 PM
Really ???

4118027 WENGERNUK, SARAH
Print Card Professional
Senior
State: MD All Breeds/Disciplines USDF Participating FEI ID Number: N/A
Passport Number: N/A

I have no dog in this fight Lex but at least look the person up before you make claims. You do know how to use the USEF search function right? Maybe not......

I do know how to use the search function and she wasn't there when I looked earlier. Look at the date on her membership before you go bitching at me. It's a few weeks old, and in case you didn't know (since you know nothing about the inner workings of the organization), it takes a few weeks to get added into the database. :)

gottagrey
Jan. 11, 2011, 12:31 AM
Well her daughter Amaya won 1st place in a trail ride competition...
and in looking at her "resume" its interesting that she lists all these clinicians she's "cliniced" with and then says her favorite clinicians are Denny Emmerson and Joe Fargis yet those 2 aren't mentioned in the section of who she's cliniced w/. Cliniced and trained w/ are very very different. I can say I've ""cliniced" with George Morris, Ralph Hill, Philip Dutton, Joe Fargis and Neil Shapiro... but that doesn't make me a trainer...

also says she gives lessons and clinics throughout the US...
she might be a good instructor and not a good web page designer...

wookie
Jan. 11, 2011, 02:24 AM
ooohhh. this is very eye brow raising. personally, i would not lesson with someone who had such a vague resume...a little flakey.

but i second mogie and matt bryner who is boarding where i am. yellow britches...pm me about your experience with scott.

TotB
Jan. 11, 2011, 06:36 AM
I second Sam at Allan Sport Horses. They are very good with young goofy ones, as well as ones who have lost comfidence and competition horses. She has coached me at Preliminary and did a wonderful job. We remain good friends even though I moved out of the area- nothing but good things to say about her.

April MD
Jan. 11, 2011, 07:18 AM
While I can't speak to her training under saddle, I will say that I have had limited experience with Sarah and I found her to be a very kind, educated, and thoughtful person.

When I bought my first young horse several years ago, I had plans to show her in hand as a two and three year old. Sarah came to my farm and helped teach me how to work my horse on "the triangle", free of charge, out of the kindness of her heart.
She was patient, friendly, encouraging, and knowledgeable. My mare and I went on to win several in-hand classes, and Sarah even turned up to watch us at one show!

I know she hasn't had a heavy competition schedule in the past few years because, like many of us, she has been busy raising young children and running the family business.

So if you are looking for someone to help you get to your first 1*, I don't know if she is right for you. But I wouldn't hesitate to send my children to her. There are too many trainers out there who couldn't give a rat's a$$ about the up-downers, except for the money they bring in. Personally, I would prefer to send mine to folks who truly care about my children's development into true horsepeople. I am guessing that Sarah would be one of these folks.

Everyone has thier ideas about who should and who shouldn't be training, etc, etc... but just because you can ride doesn't mean you can teach as well.

And I'm not sure that it is necessary to bash someone publicly just based on thier website.

Sorry to play devil's advocate- I just hate seeing someone so kind and generous being spoken of in such demeaning terms.

TSHEventing
Jan. 11, 2011, 07:54 AM
I have to agree with the above, I don't know her, but unless you do I can't see how calling someone flakey (etc) based on a website which may or may not reflect her skills is mean.

asterix
Jan. 11, 2011, 08:05 AM
And I'm not sure that it is necessary to bash someone publicly just based on thier website.


I don't know this person AT ALL and have no idea if she's any good, but, I am sorry, it IS fair to try and assess someone based on their website. If you are a professional and you put up a website to attract business, as a professional, then it is certainly fair game.

It amazes me that people think, in 2011, that a professional website doesn't "count" somehow. If you do not have an "offline" reputation in the business community you are in, then it is EVERYTHING.

Certainly this person could benefit from some assistance in creating a more compelling, less hyperbolic professional web presence.

Photos of riding/training, clear descriptions of services, testimonials from clients, and specific results (if not of the trainer herself, her students), along with the sense not to "guarantee" anything when dealing with horses, would help her get her business off to a good start.

OP, if you can get up 32 towards Waredaca, there are a number of places in that area that might work for you as well.

LLDM
Jan. 11, 2011, 08:12 AM
I would agree with the idea that if you want to move up the levels, you ought to train with an instructor experienced at those levels.

But if you are trying to sort out some basic issues with your horse, are looking for some general training, encouragement, help finding and fixing the holes in you and your horse - the small independent instructors can have a ton to offer.

It is unfortunate that there are no decent certification programs for them. But some people are very educated about horsemanship, naturally talented teachers and are not completely focused on competitions. These can be a godsend at certain times in your/your horse's life and training.

Yes, of course there are genuine flakes out there, and there are scary, dangerous wannabe trainers. But the OP certainly sounds far enough along to determine whether or not this one is flake after one or two lessons. And she may get someone a whole lot more invested in her success than the typical busy ULR Pro.

This may not be the be all, end all trainer for the OPs long term goal, but it may be a good answer for where she is right now. I also know of a trainer or two like this who encourage students to go to more advanced trainers and clinics and even wean them away when they feel they have no more to offer.

There are worse things in the world than someone who teaches simply because they love it, not because it pays the bills.

I'm just sayin'

SCFarm

yellowbritches
Jan. 11, 2011, 08:16 AM
My BIGGEST issue with this person is less the odd website and resume but the claim in her ad (in the Equiery, though I think she eludes to it on her site, too) that she can make these massive improvements in COMPETITIVE horses and riders. She also uses the word "diagnose", which makes my skin crawl.

If she specializes in young horses in hand or beginner riders then she needs to promote herself in that direction. She shouldn't be trying to promote herself as this amazing dressage and eventing guru when there is no record of her to speak and no one has heard her name.

Sam Allen is also great. I like her a lot.

AChestnutMare&ABlonde
Jan. 11, 2011, 08:20 AM
I second Sam at Allan Sport Horses. They are very good with young goofy ones, as well as ones who have lost comfidence and competition horses. She has coached me at Preliminary and did a wonderful job. We remain good friends even though I moved out of the area- nothing but good things to say about her.


Thank you, I have actually heard of them as well as many great others. I guess even if I can only make the drive for a lesson to someone a couple times a month, something is better than nothing!!

Thanks again everyone! And I hate to down her if she is experienced... I guess my thought is...anyone can type that up. All of my previous trainers were USEA members and actively competing up and down the east coast and at least had standings and pictures, students, horses that they've bought, trained and sold to clients, etc. and if you google them you can usually find enough information. But this is why I came here I guess because I wasn't able to find anything ;)

AChestnutMare&ABlonde
Jan. 11, 2011, 08:34 AM
I do want to add...

I just received another e-mail from her. She told me she rode at a farm up the road from ages 11-college; however this farm only offers lessons and camps geared towards children, beginners, etc. Nothing competitive, but she may have gone off the farm, as well. Hmm.. Also, it bothered me because her few questions to me were about where I had heard about her, if it was the Equiery, online, etc. and said she was just "curious for advertising sake" and not about the issues I am having with my horse or my experience and history.

I think I'll move on and keep looking...

I think I am going to see where my old trainer resides now. I believe it will only be about a 35 minute drive, but like I said, something is better than nothing! As long as we're moving in the right direction. :D

RxCate
Jan. 11, 2011, 08:49 AM
I am really surprised none of you picked up that she's a Kool-aid drinker as well.

:lol:

LexInVA
Jan. 11, 2011, 09:07 AM
I am really surprised none of you picked up that she's a Kool-aid drinker as well.

:lol:

Business before pleasure Cate. :lol:

lizanne
Jan. 11, 2011, 08:14 PM
Steuart Pittman is in or near Davidsonville and teaches. Here is his website http://www.dodonfarm.com/teaching.html
He has competed up to the Advanced level, and his website explains that he enjoys teaching the lower level riders the most.

cleozowner
Jan. 12, 2011, 06:26 AM
Slightly OT, I suppose, but I would not want any amateur trying Cesar Millan's techniques near ANY of my animals, canine or otherwise.

LLDM
Jan. 12, 2011, 12:24 PM
I am really surprised none of you picked up that she's a Kool-aid drinker as well.

:lol:

Um, so were the O'Connors for a while. Seems like she moved on just as they did.

SCFarm

LexInVA
Jan. 12, 2011, 12:27 PM
Um, so were the O'Connors for a while. Seems like she moved on just as they did.

SCFarm

They still are. They use and teach the Parelli method.

AChestnutMare&ABlonde
Jan. 12, 2011, 02:11 PM
Thank you, but no thank you to Steuart :)

I have contacted one of my previosu trainers, Valerie, with Blue Clover eventing and have gotten in touch with a few others from COTH. Thank you everyone!