Specifically, should I ride in the clinic if I've got a green horse? Jeff Cook is doing a clinic locally in a few months and I'm considering going. I've got a pretty green horse and don't realistically think we'll be ready to show this year - I thought spending my money doing clinics might be a good way to get the "show feeling" while still learning.
I did a search on COTH and it seems like everyone generally has very good things to say about Jeff as a clinician, but how good is he with greenies? My horse has been under saddle since August and we're pretty solid with flatwork; he's great at trot fences (singles and gymnastics up to 2'9") but we're not consistently cantering fences because our relaxation and adjustability tends to disappear at that point. There's a 2' section in the clinic that I would enter if it seems appropriate. Hopefully in another 2+ months we'll be further along, but I don't want to waste anyone's time either. Any advice or personal experience one way or another? If I don't take my horse I'll probably try to audit anyway. I really appreciate any info...I've got the bug to get out there and do something but want it to be a positive experience.
Jeff is awesome all the way around! He totally gets greenies, so I wouldn't worry a bit, he will make sure it is a positive experience. I have worked with him with all sorts of green horses, he knows just how to challenge them without making it too much pressure for their brains to handle. And it he will give you some new ideas, too. It would be a great way to prepare for showing!
"A good horse and a good rider are only so in mutual trust."
I took a very green OTTB to a Jeff Cook clinic a year or two a go and it was FABULOUS! Even though we were in a group (2'6" section) that had some very well broke horses, he adapted all the excersizes to work for all of us. Everything was inviting yet just challening enough, and he really aims to create a good expierience for the horses.
Thanks everyone, you just made me feel much better! I've audited lots of clinics but this is the first time in a dozen years that I've had a horse I've wanted to ride in one with. I'm going to talk to my trainer today and think I'll go for it.