George is outstanding of course but I would also recommend Candace King, Greg Best, Archie Cox (he's a character and very informative), and Frank Madden (also a character!). I'm not sure if John French does a lot of clinics but he would be awesome (I've watched videos of his and he was great).
Summer- I'm excited that you guys will be hosting a clinic! It's been a while since we've gotten a really good clinician here in Tulsa!
I've ridden with a lot of very BNTs over the years and Greg is the only one I've ever gone back to regularly and now consider my "full time trainer" (as much as you can consider a person you see 4-6 times a year a full time trainer anyways). He's also the only one I've ever ridden with who is equally effective with every horse I've put in front of him (running the gamut from hot to dead and broke to unbroke). In addition I think he's as good with short stirrup and lower level riders as he is with the most advanced groups.
With that being said, he may be a little more difficult to sign up for a clinic than a US-based trainer. He keeps a pretty solid clinic schedule that doesn't have a lot of room for new clinic hosts.
All above mentioned are great clinicians. No question. But I find that the clinic world also has to get a bit like the horse show world. There are levels of riders in different areas.
For instance, I am a fairly good painter. I do not need Picasso to teach me more. I most likely need the guy that teaches water color on PBS.
To get someone "famous" is a way to bring participants if you think it wouldn't fill with just good teachers. You can charge more with famous people, but you also pay them much more. If you need famous names to fill, then more power to you.
You do not need Beezie Madden to teach the 2'6" hunter riders. As gracious I am sure she would be, uh.. over qualified for the job. There are great teachers that are here for that job.
That being said, the best teacher I ever knew hated horse shows. Yeah, she was a wierdo and not commercial. ( For the record, I have been a pro, rider and trainer of many USEF AA horse show champions, not trying to blow hard, just trying to say look outside the box)) There are so many people that are not neccesarily famous that can come and do great clinics for reasonable prices.
Not to say any of your choices are not GREAT ones. If you are trying to run a clinic to make money.. Go on with it. But there are so many good teachers especially for novice level riders that are not famous but will raise the level of riding and horsemanship in a very special way. Best to you.
Mid-Atlantic Equitation Festival,Scholarships and College Fair
November 14-16, 2014
Bernie Traurig is a great clinician. He really enjoys the ones at the low levels as well as the big jumpers. Must be his Pony Club beginnings. Focuses on being a partner with your horse, still rides beautifully, quietly - can demonstrate what he wants, and the horses love him.
Julie Winkle is also a great clinician. From soup to nuts - she recently did a clinic with everything from 2'6" to the big jumpers. She goes over conformation, the little bits and pieces that make a winning ride, and inspires riders at any level to think.
Two super clinicians for any level who also happen to be Rock Stars.
I think one thing you can reliably get out a clinic with any of the mentioned trainers is at least one bit of knowledge that you can use nearly every day. I am constantly channeling Plumb - "Connection! Not getting that horse on the bit!"- he read my horse and dissected our issues before I even got on There is something that resinates through us humble riders with these Rock Stars.
The other thing many of us our privileged with is Youtube. We can see the Rock Stars teaching and analyze bits of their teaching style to see if it coincides with our learning styles. The chance of learning from the Rock Star is much greater than those hidden-gems because of this.