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Help... I signed up for a clinic that I don't want to ride in

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    Help... I signed up for a clinic that I don't want to ride in

    I signed up for a clinic this weekend. I don't really want to ride in it because of circumstances but I wanted to support the Dressage scene /BO. They are having issues filling the clinic and it was on the brink of not happening.

    I've ridden with the clinician before and enjoyed him. Not my favorite ever but last time he worked me hard and on stuff I needed.

    But I put my horse down 8 days ago. I have a horse to ride but I'm just feeling so anxious about this. I'm out of shape (again) since my horse wasn't rideable for awhile (and now he's gone.)

    I'm pulling myself up and doing the clinic. I committed and maybe it will be good for me. But I'm so not up for an intense ride on a horse I haven't ridden in a long time (I rode this horse a year ago for owner.)

    I was hoping we could work on just my position. Or lost of walk /accuracy. Or half ground work.
    Ideas? Is the clinician going to think I'm crazy? Or a whiner?

    I highly doubt the clincian will give you a hard time. Explain the situation and that you are just getting back in the saddle. I bet you'll be glad you did when it is over. Can you go ride the horse once or twice this week to get used to it?


      Well if this is a clinician of quality and you have a prior relationship go with a positive attitude. Tell them straight up what has happened and how you are feeling, including being honest about all your time off, your conditioning and your reluctance to scratch. Any trainer who has "been around" has encountered this situation and I would hope would be sympathetic.

      Ask them, can we focus on position, mental game forward planning and training goals. It is hard if you dont have a horse you are working on/with. This is a loaner? Perhaps go with the thought that you can give the owner of the horse insight to training goals gaps issues ( if you think that would be welcome info)

      Ask the clinician to give you homework to focus on to get you back to where you need to be.

      the other option is to donate your ride to someone at your barn or at the hosts barn.
      {{{ hugs}}}}
      -- * > hoopoe
      Procrastinate NOW
      Introverted Since 1957


        So sorry for your loss. I wouldn’t want to ride in a clinic after losing my horse either. I’d be tempted to give my spot away. Perhaps there is kid in the barn with limited funding that might get a real thrill from the opportunity? If you are set on riding yourself, maybe look forward to the intensity as a distraction from your grief? Is the clinician going to think you’re a whiner if you want a special format? I don’t know. The clinician I use regularly certainly would. Hence why I said I’d give my spot away. Good luck and be kind to yourself.


          Have the clinic organizer explain the situation to the clinician in advance. That way you won't be dealing with this in front of auditors, and the clinician can plan a program for you that will be appropriate. The clinician should appreciate the heads up. This has worked very well for me in the past both as a rider and as a clinician.


            So sorry to hear of your loss. I don’t have experience with this scenario, but with regards to your riding shape etc- I took a lesson with a very respected clinician, on my five year old who had been out of regular work for six months, due to my pregnancy. I was 13 weeks postpartum. Listen, take my advice with respects to just being up-front about your fitness and the situation. I started off by just giving my situation, and telling him that I knew he would see our time today to make sure that we have great building blocks to move forward on. He totally understood and was happy to make sure that we were not overfaced. To this day, it is one of my best lessons. I was nervous as Hell. But I practiced my guts and showed up and was up front. I think you’ll have great luck, as well.


              Original Poster

              Thanks guys. I definitely still want to ride in general as I think it will help me mentally. Although easing into it was more what I had in mind. I think giving the clinician a heads up would be good. Hopefully he will understand. I've only ridden with him once before, so I am not sure exactly how he will be. I guess if he thinks I'm a whiner, then oh well.

              Im going to see if I can ride the horse tomorrow so I'm not going completely cold into the clinic.


                If you explain your circumstances to him, why would he think you a whiner? In the current pandemic, he should be pleased you signed up to support the clinic!
                "Good young horses are bred, but good advanced horses are trained" Sam Griffiths


                  Can you afford to give your slot to a worthy young rider who maybe couldn’t afford to go any other way?
                  Chronicles of the $700 Pony
                  The Further Adventures of the $700 Pony
         <-- My Blog


                    Original Poster

                    I haven't paid yet but was supposed to pay tomorrow. I could see if there are any riders but it's a pretty low key barn. I doubt they will bring him in again because boarders aren't interested.


                      I'm sorry for your loss. You've had such a rough time, I hope it's a wonderful experience because you deserve it! You got good advice you're taking, so I have nothing to add in that regard!
                      If Kim Kardashian wants to set up a gofundme to purchase the Wu Tang album from Martin Shkreli, guess what people you DON'T HAVE TO DONATE.


                        Original Poster

                        Thank you netg !

                        So I rode last night. It should be an interesting clinic... These days when I take any riding breaks it's like my body resets. It forgets everything (not my mind.) So frustrating. I've been riding for over 20 years but I probably look like a beginner.

                        The horse I'm riding is interesting. He's an Arabian and an interesting shape. He is a rolly polly shape! And has that big muscle under his neck...

                        There should be plenty for us to work on, even just walk and trot.


                          Original Poster

                          netg I just reached out the equestrian pilates instructor you have recommended. I want my seat back!!


                            Good luck in the clinic! I hope it is a bonding experience for you and the Arabian you are borrowing. They are such empathetic horses. He will probably pick up on your mood and might even cheer you up.


                              Original Poster

                              MLOaks thanks. He is a funny little dude. He's got lots of personality. He is mainly a low level endurance horse but has been sitting for a year.

                              Definitely a lot of basics are in store for us (which I look forward to right now.)


                                Who is the clinician? Maybe we can give you insight on how he would feel about your special circumstances. Although, as others have said, I can't imagine he would have a problem with it.


                                  Thanks for supporting BO bringing in clinicians!
                                  Absolutely tell clinician w 1 or 2 sentences what's up. " I had to put my horse down last week and haven't ridden much in 8 weeks (or whatever) because of his illness. Can we work on position, or other topics which will help me with my next horse?"
                                  If BO can alert clinician ahead of time that's great, but honestly I wouldn't expect them to remember details or much really about a dist they havent met yet. Distill your situation into as few words as possible and let them know in your brief introduction. Then breathe and learn.



                                    Original Poster

                                    Mondo it's Jim Hicks from Utah (or Idaho?)
                                    Either way it's tomorrow so I'll just see how it goes.


                                      Originally posted by Jeannette, formerly ponygyrl View Post
                                      . Distill your situation into as few words as possible and let them know in your brief introduction. Then breathe and learn.
                                      Wise words I wish more people would follow more often.


                                        Utah. I only know him by reputation from when I lived in UT (also showed at his place regularly), but suspect he will be sympathetic, supportive, and adaptable to your circumstances. Depending on what you feel up for, I think he'd be a great person to get a "let *this* horse you haven't ridden in a while tell you what it *this* moment" lesson from - either on the ground or in the saddle (or both). I wouldn't be afraid at all to tell him exactly what Jeannette said. Best wishes and I hope it ends up being a restorative experience for you!