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  1. #81
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    Endurance? Not me! (Seriously, I couldn't tell you the last time I rode for more than one hour! )

    I started out doing jumpers (what a learning curve!) tried hunters, then some eventing and dressage. Decided to try the ay-rab barn because it was less than 1 mile from my house. Figured that would be the best way to squeeze in riding time. Had no idea I'd be met with the horse trainer version of the soup nazi from Seinfeld...NO RIDING FOR YOU!

    These days I mostly trail ride and piddle around on my lame (fusing hock) trail horse. Sometimes if I'm feeling brave (or stupid) I ride my neurotic TB. Ay-rab has been sitting in the field since I brought him home from the training barn. I wanted to let his upside-down musculature relax so that I won't be fighting as much muscle memory when I transition him from his saddleseat past to hunters, dressage, whatever I can figure out that we can do decently enough together. I'm about to put him back to work but I would really rather send him to a barn where I could have him in training or partial training and take lessons rather than trying to do it all myself. Some weeks when I work nights I can find time to ride every day of the week. Weeks when I work days I might not get to the barn at all. It's not exactly conducive to keeping a horse fit. But it's what I'll have to do until I can muster up a plan b.


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  2. #82
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    Quote Originally Posted by meaty ogre View Post
    In the interest of full disclosure, I should also state that this rant of mine was prompted by an e-mail blast I recieved from a Gene Lacroix who was/is searching for ways to bring new lifeblood to the arabian horse industry.
    LaCrook? I would wager that he is searching for ways to bring new lifeblood to his wallet, not the arab business.


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  3. #83
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    Oh, shoot, I dunno why I thought you were coming from endurance! Sorry about that.

    Your arab boy sounds lovely, hopefully you guys find your niche. I know what you mean though, about getting back into a program. I'm seriously starting to consider putting my mare in training, just to get her going again, for a month or two while I figure my own schedule out.
    We couldn't all be cowboys, so some of us are clowns.


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  4. #84
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    I'd love to be able to send him a list of my observations and suggestions, as a person who has been around the block with horses but is new to the arab scene.

    Most shows have taken a hit in attendance with this economy, but from what I've observed and gleaned, the arab industry tanked harder than most. It's not hard to see why.

    (Now I'm off to google him since 2 people have insinuated that he has a villainous past! )



  5. #85
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    Meaty Ogre based on what you said in post #66 I think you have a difference in idea of what full training is compared to what the standard of full training is in the Arab world. In an Arab barn full training is full training, the trainer takes care of everything and has the horse worked so that when you come to lesson you have a good ride. Many people like this!

    You obviously don't want full training. So when looking for a barn to keep your horse at you need to be inquiring as to whether they take boarders who will be lessoning with the trainer but working the horse on their own, and if it can be worked out that they would lunge your horse when you are on vacation and such and if you can travel to shows with them. Ask for what you actually want, don't get upset and don't call the trainers dictators when that is the service they provide because that is the service the majority of their customers want.


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  6. #86
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    Oh, I understand the concept of full training, and that is actually what I wanted. I just do not want that to mean i am only allowed to ride my horse in one weekly lesson. This is the difference between hunter/jumper etc type barns and the arabian model. I'm looking into "conditioning" or other type of board arrangements now because I need to be able to ride my horse without restrictions. It is my fault for not asking when i signed the training contract, but nowhere did it say I would not be permitted to ride my horse except for the weekly lesson. That is the industry standard you are used to, but it's extremely opposed to what I've encountered.


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  7. #87
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    Oct. 29, 2000
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2DogsFarm View Post
    Those 2 sentences say it all for me.

    I worked with a guy who owned 16 Morgans kept in another state.
    All he did was write checks and go to the occasional show 99.9% of the time as a spectator.
    On the very rare occasion he was allowed to show one of the horses, always one the trainer chose for him.
    He would occasionally rotate one of the trainer's rejects to the barn we both boarded at.
    Always nice horses and honestly - the guy could drive & ride, but rarely did.

    But he talked about "his" horses and honestly could not understand why this type of "ownership" baffled me.
    Did not help that he'd tell or ask me things that made my eyes roll back in my head:
    Examples:
    *Should a sweaty horse be cooled down with rubbing alcohol in Winter - uh, nope - how's about putting on that championship cooler hanging on your stall door?
    *lame horse at trainer's place might have WLD - was that serious?
    *Trainer wants to breed the mares he owned, despite the fact that last year's foals were still unsold.

    And on & on, ad nauseum.
    Not my idea of being horseowner.
    Everyone enjoys horses their own way. People who own racehorses never ride them and rarely see them on a weekly basis. But they do love their horses (most of them do, as in every industry), just in a different way than we do.

    I had a boarder who mover her 2 nice horses to my barn. When they were settled in, I asked when she would be coming to ride. She answered that she didn't ride, but would visit them a lot. I was flabberghasted. WHO would own horses and not ride them?!?! But Madeline showed me that she loved her horses and bonded with them by coming everyday annd spending time with them.

    I began to realize how narrow minded I had been in my concept of horse ownership. Horses mean different things to different people.

    As far as his question about alcohol -- that was a great question!! And is something I will add to my bag o tricks after owning horses for over 50 years. Alcohol evaporates very quickly and takes the saddle sweat with it. We use it at the back gate to take the sweat mark off the horse before being called back in for the jog. -- I cannot think why I have never ued it int he winter to get a horse dry more quickly (Of course with a blanket over the top).

    When I am in full training, I expect to be told what the schedule will be. To me, that is part of full training. If you are to get 3 lessons/schools a week, how is the trainer supposed to keep to a schedule without putting each horse/customer into a slot? It would be like going to the dentist without an appointment; when a professional is involved, you have a certain time to be seen by him.
    Last edited by Lord Helpus; Nov. 28, 2012 at 10:07 AM.
    "I used to have money, now I have horses."


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  8. #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by meaty ogre View Post
    Oh, I understand the concept of full training, and that is actually what I wanted. I just do not want that to mean i am only allowed to ride my horse in one weekly lesson. This is the difference between hunter/jumper etc type barns and the arabian model. I'm looking into "conditioning" or other type of board arrangements now because I need to be able to ride my horse without restrictions. It is my fault for not asking when i signed the training contract, but nowhere did it say I would not be permitted to ride my horse except for the weekly lesson. That is the industry standard you are used to, but it's extremely opposed to what I've encountered.

    Truly, this is not the provence of Arab/Gaited trainers. I rode with a trainer in California (a big name/national trainer). My riding time slots were Tues, Thurs, Sat at 10am. My horse was ridden/trained/schooled by the barn pro rider (not the trainer -- the trainer had been a famous rider, but no longer rode) Wed, Fri and Sun and the barn was closed on Monday so the men could have a day off.

    I had been keeping my horse at home and I adored him. He was the horse of a lifetime for me. But I also wanted to be competative in the A/O division and I could not reach that goal with trailer in lessons.

    For people who cannot/do not want to competatively ride at a cetain level, maintaining 100% control of your horse and his schedule is fine. But do not judge those of us who have different goals.

    As has been said, where would our top riders/Olympians be if not for owners who enjoyed watching their horses compete on the world stage? They are not making fun of you for wanting to trail ride every day.

    Full training is full training. The horse becomes the responsibility of the trainer; his care, shoeing, health, performance -- the whole nine yards. If you want to take several lessons a week, that is a different level of committment. If you were confused by this, it is your confusion, not the trainer's.

    Right now I have 4 horses in my fields. One is currently competing and the other 3 are retired competition horses. I will never sell them -- they are my friends. But there was a time in their lives when they went off to boarding school to learn their trade. I cannot for the life of me see anything *wrong* with that.
    "I used to have money, now I have horses."


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  9. #89
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    Quote Originally Posted by War Admiral View Post
    This is a VERY good point. When I lived in northern New England, I was at the same local H/J barn as a kid who kept 2 horses locally and 1 at Hunterdon, and flew down to Hunterdon once a week for a lesson w/ GM. Nowadays the saddle seat kids do the same thing, fly in from all over the USA to lesson with Lillian Shively. But I bet most, if not all, either have practice horses at home or also ride with a local trainer as well as at Delovely.

    Another factor I was always told as a kid is that, just as it's axiomatic a hunter horse has a finite limit of good jumps in it, a performance Saddlebred has a finite number of slow gaits and racks. So you keep your practice horse or ride lesson horses to reduce the wear and tear on your show horse. That always made good sense to me.
    This has been going on for eons. Now it's Lillian Shively, it used to be Helen Crabtree.

    Add me as someone else who has a horse in training long distance because no one local has clue what to do with her. Which is really frustrating since local is horse-saturated NoVA.


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  10. #90
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    Oct. 12, 2007
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    OP, if you're moving toward dressage, plenty of dressage barns will offer the sort of "full training" you are thinking of. Certainly did this with my mare (mentioned earlier)... at the start, the trainer's assistant was on her 5 days per week (trainer had mostly stopped riding, except for her own UL horse and the occasional other UL horse who came through the barn.) As I got more comfortable, I rode her more and more, and by the time I left the barn (which had nothing to do with the trainer), the assistant was on her twice a week, I had three ~45 minute lessons a week, and I rode her on my own once a week.
    You have to have experiences to gain experience.

    Proudly owned by Mythic Feronia, 1998 Morgan mare; G-dspeed Trump & Minnie; welcome 2014 Morgan filly MtnTop FlyWithMeJosephine



  11. #91
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    Sep. 19, 2003
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2DogsFarm View Post
    Those 2 sentences say it all for me.

    I worked with a guy who owned 16 Morgans kept in another state.
    All he did was write checks and go to the occasional show 99.9% of the time as a spectator.
    On the very rare occasion he was allowed to show one of the horses, always one the trainer chose for him.
    He would occasionally rotate one of the trainer's rejects to the barn we both boarded at.
    Always nice horses and honestly - the guy could drive & ride, but rarely did.

    But he talked about "his" horses and honestly could not understand why this type of "ownership" baffled me.
    Did not help that he'd tell or ask me things that made my eyes roll back in my head:
    Examples:
    *Should a sweaty horse be cooled down with rubbing alcohol in Winter - uh, nope - how's about putting on that championship cooler hanging on your stall door?
    *lame horse at trainer's place might have WLD - was that serious?
    *Trainer wants to breed the mares he owned, despite the fact that last year's foals were still unsold.

    And on & on, ad nauseum.
    Not my idea of being horseowner.
    Sounds like a racehorse owner. I used to do layups for a TB trainer, and I would just send a bill to the owner. Never saw any of the owners. We did have one horse we brought to Belmont when the owner switched trainers specifically so he could watch the horse run. Other than that, the owners were not involved other than writing a check.

    They were my favorite boarders.


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  12. #92
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    Jan. 17, 2008
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    Middle Tn
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    Just had to add that my silly former Park Saddle Morgan has evented up to Novice and is now, at 18, going back to Saddleseat with my daughter. Took a looog time to get him to come down and round and never did score very well in dressage at the low levels (actually was told at a schooling show to take him back to the Morgan breed shows!) But we had fun and he proved that he can do it all



    Quote Originally Posted by meaty ogre View Post
    And yes, alagirl, I guess that does leave me with the option of a dressage barn!

    Thought about eventing (those folks will take anyone! ) but my silly "former" saddleseat horse can't be bothered to put his head down to negotiate his way over a pole on the ground...I'm not pointing him at a jump any time soon!

    I'll figure it out. I'm just genuinely flabergasted that this is the "way it is" here. If I had any time or aspirations to do so, I think there's a huge niche that could be filled here!
    "Farriers are the hairdressers of the horse world. They know everything about everybody..."-Lildunhorse



  13. #93
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    Jul. 20, 2004
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    Lord Helpus, I could totally be on board with designated ride times. When I have had horses in full training in the past, I wasl always in contact with the trainer to determine when I could come. I've got no problem with that whatsoever. Being told I could not come at all except the one lesson was what I have a problem with. I did at times drop in unannounced (after having paid for training that didn't happen) and I didn't expect to be able to ride those days, but even when I arrived to find the trainer riding my horse, I was still welcome to hop on when he/she was done and cool my horse out. Maybe what I'm used to just isn't the norm. I've honestly never encountered it elsewhere though. And I'm cool with whatever level of involvment people want. The horse industry needs all types. I just know for myself that I can't become a better (or even a good!) rider doing one lesson going round in circles. I just (wrongly) assumed that most trainers wanted their students to ride as much as possible to hone their riding skills. I won't make assumptions again. But, it honestly never occurred to me to ask (and I'm sure it didn't occur to them to put in the contract because that's just they way they do things).

    And I totally agree if you want to do the A/Os or have a horse competing at a high level, you need to be willing to hand over control to the pro to get you there. But again, I'm talking about a teenaged campaigner who knows his job and was specifically bought to be a low-maintenance ammy-friendly kick around the ring mount.

    I understand the racehorse model. But again, I don't see the relevance to my situation because though I know many racehorse owners, I've never met one yet who bought a race horse so they could be a jockey or learn to drive a sulky. It's just not the same as a full-time working mom of 4 who wants her horse in training so that when she rides, he is ready to go for her.

    The barn wasn't a good fit so I walked. I did try to negotiate some more riding time but they weren't willing to budge. They had their way of doing things and it was a case of "my way or the highway." I'm just a little flustered because I like the horse, like the people I've met, would like to show at the breed shows, would like to have my horse kept tuned up for me, and have him hauled to shows and have help at those shows (and of course I expect to pay well for all this service!) but I can't seem to find anyone who is willing to take my money in exchange for those services. Like I said, it just was flabbergasting to me because every event, hunter, jumper, dressage, mixed-background barn provided this exact service. I've been required to feed certain feeds or supplements, I've been required to ride during certain barn hours (I have no problem yielding right of way to lessons...that's a given), I've even been required to use a certain farrier or vet. I understand that pros run their barns their way and they all have rules. Like I said I had just not ever run up against the you can't ride your horse rule. I thank those who have pointed out some very valid and thought-provoking reasons (like War Admiral's suggestion that some save their flashy mounts' legs for the show oval...makes sense). This has been enlightening in many ways. I've also done some introspection too. I think maybe I'm used to a certain level of freedom and control. I usually keep my horses in my own back yard and I'm used to doing whatever I want with them, whenever I want to. It's hard to go back from that. Maybe my expectations are a little off-kilter. However I am ultimately responsible for the welfare and wellbeing (and bills!) for my horses, and I do own mine for the purpose of riding (though you might not know it by the fact that they usually sit untouched until the weekend or miraculous alignment of stars that results in me having both a babysitter and free time to ride!). Thanks guys, this has been helpful.

    I'm going to keep looking and hope I can find a situation that works. I really want to go to the ay-rab shows. They have the best barn parties!


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  14. #94
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    What area of the country are you in? There are quite a few Arab people on this board and someone may know of a barn where you would fit. Also they may be a Saddlebred or Morgan barn in your area that would be a good fit. And lastly have you been to the Ammy Army forum? http://theammyarmy.forumotion.com/


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  15. #95
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    Renae, I'm in Delaware.

    Never heard of the ammy army forum. Thanks! But gosh, so much interesting stuff there how will I ever get any work done now!?!?


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  16. #96
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    Mar. 26, 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Helpus View Post
    Everyone enjoys horses their own way. People who own racehorses never ride them and rarely see them on a weekly basis. But they do love their horses (most of them do, as in every industry), just in a different way than we do.

    As far as his question about alcohol -- that was a great question!! And is something I will add to my bag o tricks after owning horses for over 50 years. Alcohol evaporates very quickly and takes the saddle sweat with it. We use it at the back gate to take the sweat mark off the horse before being called back in for the jog. -- I cannot think why I have never ued it int he winter to et a horse dry more quickly (Of course with a blanket over the top).
    OK, I'll cede your point about Different Strokes.
    But to interact so occasionally just does not equate "love" for the animal to me.
    Yes, a racer's owner might "love" the earnings, but the animal itself?

    And his alcohol question did not involve any blanketing - he rode horse into a lather and wanted to just sponge the sweat off with rubbing alcohol. then leave him in his (chilly) stall.
    In February IIRC, in an unheated barn.
    He honestly had no clue that might be a bad practice.
    Even with the wool cooler folded neatly on the blanket rack.

    AND this guy knew the purchase price of every one of his horses and how much trainer told him he could resell them for.
    But in the 4 or so years we were at the same barn NOT A SINGLE ONE SOLD.
    Mare, gelding, stud colt or what have you.
    So why keep breeding the mares?
    Wait: I can anwer that one.
    As he told me himself, the trainer "just loved the babies"
    Cha-ching = Love?

    Nope - to him they were investments. Period.
    You should have seen his face when I told him I had turned down 10X my purchase price for my TB.
    *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
    Steppin' Out 1988-2004
    Hey Vern! 1982-2009
    Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009


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  17. #97
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    Jul. 14, 2008
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    [QUOTE=Lord Helpus;6691363]Everyone enjoys horses their own way. People who own racehorses never ride them and rarely see them on a weekly basis. But they do love their horses (most of them do, as in every industry), just in a different way than we do.

    I had a boarder who mover her 2 nice horses to my barn. When they were settled in, I asked when she would be coming to ride. She answered that she didn't ride, but would visit them a lot. I was flabberghasted. WHO would own horses and not ride them?!?! But Madeline showed me that she loved her horses and bonded with them by coming everyday annd spending time with them.

    I began to realize how narrow minded I had been in my concept of horse ownership. Horses mean different things to different people.

    QUOTE]

    I used to board with a woman that had a stunning black horse. She came out and groomed him several times a week, and would even tack him up to lead him around. She loved him and took excellent care of him but never rode him. She told me once that she tacked him up incase she wanted to ride but had not ridden him since she bought him. She enjoyed the time she spent with him and I bet to this day she has still not ridden him.



  18. #98
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    oh, spotnot, that is so sad. I get that people can be perfectly happy not riding but clearly that lady had a desire to ride.

    I know that the others who also left the same barn I departed from also wanted more interaction, imput, control, etc. with and over their horses as well. It's a double edged sword...if the trainer wants all control they also have to take a large portion of the blame if/when things don't go as planned. Most owners I know do have a genuine desire to learn (or if they are very well-versed owners they have a desire to share that knowlege). There isn't anything *wrong* with keeping a horse in training and paying a pro to show it, or only riding it once a week in a lesson. But that environment isn't conducive to the amateur with a true desire and drive to learn, ride, and grow as a horseman. Eventually when that amateur wants more, it won't be enough. Or, in my case when I'm used to more, I couldn't go back. There were lots of good things. My horse was groomed, tacked, and ready to go when I got there. That is a nice luxury, especially when you have exactly a 1 hour window to be at the barn. I love grooming my horses but if I only have an hour to ride I appreciate having it done for me. Unfortunately the negative column overtook the good.

    But I am starting to realize I may be a bit of a "boss mare." I did fire a dentist last year who wouldn't let me go to the exam room with my kid. The other moms in the waiting room all looked like they were fine with it while I was explaining to the receptionist I couldn't go along with that. I'm sure I'm also a thorn in the trainers' side when I ask why we're using x, y, z equipment or why we are doing this exercise, etc. It's mostly curiosity and wanting to learn but I do question things. I can definitely see where an absentee racehorse owner would be a very-much preferred boarder over me!

    But back to my original point, that is sad. I would have wanted to help that lady ride.



  19. #99
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    My take on the whole full training business is this, YOU the horse owner PAYS their wage. Therefore YOU should make the calls on YOUR animal and YOUR time with them, within reason of course. I've been bullied by trainers on more than one occasion. Just remember THEY are employed by YOU. Not the other way around. And yes they typically loathe those type of owners, just write check. Right now I would not think they could be very choosey.

    I knew virtually no one would like my post. People can't possibly believe that someone who sees/rides once a week and then when the horse doesn't work out or gets injured or old sells it, doesn't LOVE their animal, opposed to another who spends 24/7 and actually knows every nuance, therefore forming a bond and would sell only pried from their dead fingers. Yep, no difference there. WTH.

    It's akin to hound dog owners who chain their dogs outside 24/7, only using them during hunting season and dog owners whose dogs sleep in their beds and are EVERY part of their waking life.


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  20. #100
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    This has been a very interesting thread to read. My brother dated someone years ago that boarded her horse at a facility similar to what was described on page 1- she rode occasionally in the summer, maybe a couple of times a month (tops) but mostly just met the horse at the warmup ring at shows a few times a year to get on and ride. I have no idea whether the horse was in full training year round or really what he did at all otherwise. Obviously there is a market for this, but never having experienced a barn like this, I didn't realize how prevalent it is.

    Growing up I boarded at a barn that couldn't have been farther from this model- lessons were not required (although I took lessons twice weekly) and the only time a trainer got on my horse was occasionally during pony club lessons. The barns I have worked at all have variations of mandatory training programs, but they are all fairly customized to the client, and none restrict riding. For example, two sessions (either lessons or training rides) might be required weekly, and anything beyond that was the client's choice. At most of these barns, we had clients that did anything from the minimum to having either lessons, training rides or some combination of the two six days a week. Some clients only rode in lessons, while others rode independently, and none (aside from some of the kids) were specifically restricted in activities as far as I know, aside from adhering to the training/exercise schedules worked out for the more upper level competition horses (which were created together by the owner/rider and trainer). That said, these were/are all eventing barns, so the clientele and practices obviously differ from those at breed-specific barns and otherwise.

    I have always wanted to be as involved as possible with the care and training of my horses, but I am an aspiring professional, so I suppose therein lies the difference. Having also played the role of riding others' horses several times a week so that they were tuned up and rideable for their amateur owners, I also understand the validity of putting training rides on a horse "just so the owner can mess them up". Everyone has different riding goals, be it watching their horse compete under a professional, riding a sane and well-trained horse a few times a week, or taking on the responsibility of training and maintaining a horse themselves. I am of the "to each, his own" school of thought- popping on only for the occasional lesson and to compete my horse would not be my cup of tea at all, but I certainly don't begrudge those who prefer it. In fact, ask me after I've been dumped off yet another flighty baby and I might give you a different answer!

    Very interesting thread!



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