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  1. #1
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    Jul. 3, 2007
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    Default Instructors and Trainers... Talking students?

    How do you feel about students talking to you while you are coaching them? Like, you are telling them to ride their mount, I mean really ride and not just passenger about, and they are telling you how they completely agree and proceed to tell you how special/unforgiving their horse must be to put up with them flopping about on their back... and they still aren't riding their horse, just trotting around trying to look the part.

    How do you deal with this? I honestly want communication between student and instructor, but their also needs to be application of instruction, not just a "ya, that's a good idea... maybe I'll try that after I tell you something else," attitude. I know I LOVE talking with my own instructor about riding philosophy, but I like to save it until I'm cooling down and walking my horse out. I just don't want to scare this student by saying, "shut up will ya!"

    Have you ever had a student like this? How did you handle it?



  2. #2
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    Jan. 1, 2009
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    Default

    *laughing* Oh god, this could be me. I'm a terrible talker. Of course, I try to *do* as I do it, but I've had to ask trainers in the past to shut me up. For me it does help calm my nerves - even when I was confident as a rider in years past, riding lessons always made me nervous! Can't explain it!

    It's not intentional I'm sure a casual, hey, it's great that you want to discuss things, but if you don't have an immediate question, can you save it until the end of the lesson? Or something similar?



  3. #3
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    Default

    Yes.

    Dressage is a funny sport (my main sport) in that it attracts alot of cerebral riders who feel the need to process verbally. Many of these riders are managers/directors in their working life and are not used to NOT talking.

    With these riders, I laugh alot as I say "focus!! focus!!" or "finish that transition before you talk!!-go back and make that a better transition!". I say it as I laugh so I don't make clients who are used to talking/directing feel awkward. I also make a habit of using walk breaks to discuss concepts and remind riders that we can talk about specific things during a break. People figure out that this is the time to talk.

    Not everyone makes a good student even if they try very hard. Some people have to learn how "wind down" and take direction and others have to learn that you can see what is going on even if they are not explaining it to you. These people are mostly very genuine in their motives. Sometimes you have to train your student as much as you train the horse. Stay positive and upbeat - your students will figure out how to take lessons as you get to know each other.



  4. #4
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    Apr. 6, 2006
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    Default

    People have different ways of learning. Good instructors reckognize that and adapt their style of teaching to the student (or at least good instructors who want to help as many people as possible ride well).

    Personally, myself, I need time to reflect on thijngs when learning soemthing new. Explain soemthing, let me try, correct me during that fisrt time of trying and I probably won't get it, even though I am trying. After I have a day or two to think and reflect when I try again I will get it if it was tauight to me in an effective manner in the first place.

    When you are teaching children if they are chattering a lot and not focused it can be because they are not being challenged enough.

    Whereas I find certain adults get chatty and lose focus when they are trying to avoid doing soemthing because they are afraid or anxious.



  5. #5
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    Aug. 24, 2007
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    Default

    First, as an instructor I feel that the time the student has scheduled is ultimately theirs. If they talk through the whole thing that's their choice. I have found over the years that many of my adult riders do talk alot and sometimes its leads to useful discussions, most often, like a previous poster said, its is to calm their inner fears as most of my adult riders are in the advanced beginner category and get nervous. I had one adult who had a bad fall when she was younger and was trying to get back into riding who often would spend her entire lesson sitting on the horse not moving. It was what she needed to do, and she needed me there to have the guts to do it. Its her dime. So we talked. Alot.

    I almost get more frustrated with the students who NEVER SAY A WORD. EVER. Usually its the teeneagers or preteens and you can ask them questions to be sure you are making yourself clear and you get NO response. I then don't know if they get it or not.

    I guess it boils down to you. If you don't want to teach these types of students don't.



  6. #6
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    Default

    I talk. A lot. But it is how I process information and make connections - my trainer will say something, and I connect it back to something else on the ground or in the saddle, where I already have a good physical feel and visual. I am just incredibly verbal (I know this must shock and surprise you!). She is very understanding, but it makes a huge difference in the way I learn.
    www.specialhorses.org
    a 501(c)3 organization helping 501(c)3 equine rescues




  7. #7
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by SuZQuzie View Post
    How do you feel about students talking to you while you are coaching them? Like, you are telling them to ride their mount, I mean really ride and not just passenger about, and they are telling you how they completely agree and proceed to tell you how special/unforgiving their horse must be to put up with them flopping about on their back... and they still aren't riding their horse, just trotting around trying to look the part.

    How do you deal with this? I honestly want communication between student and instructor, but their also needs to be application of instruction, not just a "ya, that's a good idea... maybe I'll try that after I tell you something else," attitude. I know I LOVE talking with my own instructor about riding philosophy, but I like to save it until I'm cooling down and walking my horse out. I just don't want to scare this student by saying, "shut up will ya!"

    Have you ever had a student like this? How did you handle it?
    tell them to take the lesson------- they pay you to do a job if you cant handle the job then dont do it -
    matey in any place of work theres a line --i f you let them cross it you lose respect



  8. #8
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    Apr. 17, 2002
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    I ask them how they like to learn. Watch then do, listen then try, try and at the same time I walk you through it, what helps you learn.

    Then, for talkers, I gently ask why they are talking. Are you worried about trying? too stressed/amped up, is there something we CAN work on, and you'll be at ease enough to be quiet. I don't want them to be self-conscious, so clamping down won't help...but I do work at driving the point home that talking while you trundle, is not helping them. It's not why they are there, to chat with me or make excuses. Habits are hard to break, not responding to their chatter can help, too. Just no response. They'll quit



  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by goeslikestink View Post
    tell them to take the lesson------- they pay you to do a job if you cant handle the job then dont do it -
    matey in any place of work theres a line --i f you let them cross it you lose respect
    I would take immense offense if my trainer told me this. I am an adult who works hard for my horse $$. I am someone who processes verbally, so that is how I learn. I also often need to clarify things, so restating them is how I do that. Ultimately, your client is your CUSTOMER, and the customer is always right. Unless, of course safety is in question, but that wasn't how I read OP.
    A proud friend of bar.ka.



  10. #10
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    Nov. 15, 2006
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    this would also be me. I usually try (kinda try) to be quiet until I have a walk break then we chat I do ask questions if its something im not understanding.

    Maybe try that approach with your student. In a 1/2 hour lesson I take about 2 -3 few minute breaks to walk. We discuss our stuff and chat.



  11. #11
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    I'm a talker too... helps me process. So if I don't understand something the trainer is telling to do, I ask. I'm also very visual so I don't always 'get it' when someone tries to explain it to me verbally.

    I also chat a bit when I'm nervous as it helps to settle me down and breathe if we are trying something new and more difficult. So I'll chat all the way into a line of jumps, etc.

    The signs my trainer gives me as a cue to stop chatting is: She kinda cuts me off and says... ready now? Or let's do this, etc.

    Then I know it's time to shut up.

    She teaches alot of young ones who are true chatty kathy's. So I feel for her and try to keep my chatter to a minimum.

    But I can't learn if I keep my mouth shut the entire time as I am definately the kind of person that needs to understand WHY I'm doing something... can't do the monkey see, monkey do thing. And in the process of her telling me why, I usually have a few follow up questions.

    We chat at the end of each lesson... what went well, what didn't and what I need to work on for next week. And we can discuss any questions I might have. Plus, we do chat a little during walk breaks and I can ask questions then too.



  12. #12
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    Oct. 2, 2008
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    Default

    As an instructor, I found that some of the older women I taught were very chatty because it helped them settle their nerves. That was fine, and sometimes it helped us deal with it to talk about it! But, I tried to make sure that it was focused conversation and not just general chatter... As a student...The only issue I've ever had with this scenario was in group lessons. One of the women (VERY nice but VERY chatty) had to talk the ENTIRE time, at one point talking and trotting right into my line as we were jumping. At that point, my trainer mentioned that, perhaps, she could continue the discussion after the lesson and to WATCH OUT. I think that if that is the way you learn, fine, but be aware of it and realize that it might not always be appropriate, or, in this woman's case, safe!



  13. #13
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    Default

    Sometimes, too, we have to have a small discourse on what is "left rein" and what is "right rein" and after several times of her saying, "RIGHT REIN! RIGHT REIN!" I finally realize I am having yet another dyslexic moment.
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  14. #14
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    Default As an annoyingly apologetic student . . .

    So are you talking about someone who is told to make a change, appears to fail to make the change and is blathering away about how Horsie is such a saint because he puts up with her shortcomings?

    I can remember when I first started re-riding I had a heck of a time sensing my position and controlling it. The instructor would be saying move the leg, no not like that, there that's perfect and during the whole process I would not have been able to tell where my leg was and what I was doing that was right or wrong. Nor could I sense any change in the horse's way of going that would reinforce what I was being told to do. I did begin to pick things up when we settled on lessons that focussed on one thing only - contact and turning once, leg yields one other time, graceful downward transitions, like that. When I got to a different barn it took maybe 18 months of riding different horses to begin to sense what I was doing - some horses I clicked with and was able to "get it" and move into using whatever technique it was with other horses, or discovering a modification that worked that built off what I had used successfully before.

    And yeah, I gabbled a lot about "oh I'm so awful I'm so glad this horse can stand me". Some of my issues were related to my own personal fitness - it is hard to explain when you show up to a lesson exhausted and stupid, or stiff and sore, at some point if I want to progress I have to work independently on my fitness and suppleness.

    Nowadays I don't apologize. I still mess up but I have more confidence and a large body of recent experience, about three and a half years, I'm also not jumping or doing complex flatwork.
    Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hunter Mom View Post
    I would take immense offense if my trainer told me this. I am an adult who works hard for my horse $$. I am someone who processes verbally, so that is how I learn. I also often need to clarify things, so restating them is how I do that. Ultimately, your client is your CUSTOMER, and the customer is always right. Unless, of course safety is in question, but that wasn't how I read OP.
    really-- when one has students as in afew bods and they nattering and not concentrating on what your teaching them - then they are putting the whole lesson at risk

    senerio- chat- chat eyes off horse mind off horse, --- off contact
    so a neddy spooks as they havent got conection nor are they listening to instruction and then one spooks and ploughs into the another one thats chatting then the whole lot goes poohey pontential --- accident in my book

    now go chit chat and keep eyes and mind off the horse and off the contact and take thy lesson

    if there are areas that you want to be persific about tehn you say be
    before thy lesson if a group of you and can chat afterwards but not during but one can not do anything until one accesses there riding skills and how the horse is when being ridden

    the op said students as in plural not single



  16. #16
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    Jul. 14, 2006
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    Different learning styles. Or it could be nerves--some people talk more, others clam up.

    I actually have the opposite problem: I have difficulty talking and doing at the same time, mainly because I concentrate so hard. My brain gets in the way of my body Even answering a simple question ("what are you going to do before this transition?") with a simple answer ("sit up and half halt") breaks my concentration. This is something I work on, since I realize that all the discussion can't just happen before or after. I can be talked through about just about anything, but it tends to be a one sided conversation. My instructor has realized over time that just because my responses are nods, uh-huhs and OKs doesn't mean I'm not listening. I'm quite capable of long discussions on theory and mechanics, just not when I'm trying to do it. We use walk breaks for discussion time on the what/when/why, so the instructor knows I understand what I'm doing.

    I think adult students are far more sensitive to whether the instructor's style meshes with their own. As a kid, I never cared (I was just happy to ride, especially before getting Missy). Now I find that their are some instructors who are "too chatty" for my tastes, which in no way means that they aren't competent, just not for me.

    And like the Geek, I also sometimes confuse right and left, inside and outside.
    BES
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  17. #17
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    Jul. 21, 2006
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    OMG - my instructor has found COTH.

    In case you aren't my instructor - or actually, even if you are - I think you ought to mention this to your student before she gets on the horse for her next lesson. What if you ask her to agree to try to do as you ask first, and after she tries it out physically you and she can talk briefly about whether or not that particular maneuver was a success?

    I know I have this fault. In my case, sometimes I do it to try and calm the butterflies but other times it's just because I'm a Chatty Cathy by nature. But I have discovered I'm a lot better off if I just shut up and ride. So thanks OP for reminding me of this fact.

    When I first started with my new instructor, I asked her if she preferred me to ask questions as they came to me or if I should save them till a break or until the end of the lesson.

    It's true that the student is a paying customer, but she's paying the instructor to use her best judgment in teaching her to ride. I have a deal with my RI - she doesn't practice law, and I don't tell her how to teach riding.



  18. #18
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    I would like for students to listen to what I'm asking and at least to try and do it.

    Reality can be, arguing that "I saw so-&-so in a clinic and he/she/it said to do this"...Well, OK then...show me!..and then stand there going "Hmmmm, how interesting...now just what do you want him to be doing?"

    I figure I know what I'd like to teach and what I believe the student needs...but ultimately, it's their dime and if they want to wander about or just chat about something horsey, that's fine. Ground work and hand holding can be a big important facet of teaching with some people.



  19. #19
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    One of the things I love about my trainer is that she laughs along with me at my horse's shenanigans. I'm very focused on the riding, and so is she... but the horse is such a character that we can't help it. (Seriously, when the most common thing I do is laugh, or say, "Get over yourself already!" to the mare, and the trainer's laughing right along with me, I can't see why it's such a huge problem.)

    If she gives a criticism, I'm usually responding to let her know whether I already knew about it, or if it's something I didn't know about, maybe we need to focus on it for a while.

    If I had to be perfectly silent for the whole lesson, I think I'd explode.



  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by quietann View Post
    One of the things I love about my trainer is that she laughs along with me at my horse's shenanigans. I'm very focused on the riding, and so is she... but the horse is such a character that we can't help it. (Seriously, when the most common thing I do is laugh, or say, "Get over yourself already!" to the mare, and the trainer's laughing right along with me, I can't see why it's such a huge problem.)

    If she gives a criticism, I'm usually responding to let her know whether I already knew about it, or if it's something I didn't know about, maybe we need to focus on it for a while.

    If I had to be perfectly silent for the whole lesson, I think I'd explode.
    no one perfectly silent during a lesson - as some one has to be talking and if instructing then you if teaching one rider have three personalties -- the instructor-- the rider and the horse

    if teaching a group then it multiplys

    if teaching you expect one to listen to instruction- given if talking then if students a re milling around talking who has control the students or the teacher

    remember the four p's piss poor preparation planing leads to piss poor planing performance



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