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Planning a clinic?

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  • Planning a clinic?

    Does anyone have any advice for putting together a clinic? I'm in graduate school, and although I've been in the area for a few years I don't have a ton of local connections.

    When I studied abroad in Spain I took classical dressage lessons, and my trainer just booked her tickets to come spend ten days visiting me this winter . We could do it at the farm I board at, although the footing isn't the best, or we could travel locally over the two weekends she's here. Does anyone have any ideas for how to do this? I've talked to a few people who are interested, but haven't gotten any commitment yet.

    She's an excellent teacher and I would love to share her! Although she'll be helping me with my guys anyway, so it wouldn't be the end of the world if it didn't work out.
    Last edited by vantage; Nov. 28, 2012, 11:55 PM. Reason: grammar

  • #2
    Since it will be winter, it would be important to have it at a venue with an indoor arena. Stabling is nice for people to have a place to stick their horses so they can audit. Since she is visiting you anyway, it sounds more casual, not like you have to cover a lot of fixed expenses. People are likely to take a chance on an unknown if it is fairly affordable. I would create a flyer with her bio, maybe a nice photo, and registration info. Do you have a local GMO that will put the info on their calendar? Post the info in the local equestrian facebook pages, etc. Maybe you can have a small one day clinic at the start of her visit and another at the end. You might get auditors that like what they see and will want to ride next time.
    "The sea was angry that day, my friends - like an old man trying to send back soup in a deli"


    • #3
      Agree with above advice.

      But, feel I should warn you, herding cats is easier.

      If there is a local dressage barn, maybe see if they are interested in hosting the clinic, and will encourage their own students.

      Or you could do it as an "intro to dressage" kind of thing at your barn, and try to make it accessible to riders of all levels, even those that show up in western saddles. Although that may not be something the trainer is willing to do.

      You could also just post an ad on your local horsey website (up here I would use Kijiji) and post that so and so, who has done this and that, is in our area for these dates, please contact if you would like to arrange lessons or attend a clinic during this time, and go from there.
      Freeing worms from cans everywhere!


      • Original Poster

        Thanks so much for the advice. I don't think there are too many barns nearby with indoors, although there was interest from a trainer friend about 2 hours away for lessons and she has one. I'm in NC so our winters are typically not too harsh, though an indoor would be nice.

        It would definitely be lessons for everyone - I'm actually a jumper rider who enjoys dressage, and she has helped me work through many of my greenies' over fences issues via video. Her passion is classical dressage but she has a style that makes sense to most disciplines. She's here over two weekends so we figured we could use those to do clinics/lessons if there is interest and spend the week doing touristy things. This will be her first visit to the states

        I will put together a flyer and start posting on the local FB groups with a link to her website. Hopefully I can get this organized, and if it goes well it will make it easier for her to come back!


        • #5
          make sure to buy event insurance...
          Appy Trails,
          Kathy, Cadet & CCS Silinde
          member VADANoVA www.vadanova.org


          • #6
            Is her english easy to understand? I've once audited a clinic with a dutch clinician and had a tough time with his accent.


            • #7
              Insist on payment before you give someone a ride time.

              Consider giving a discount to someone who brings more than one horse or rides on more than one day.

              Make sure to advertise, advertise, advertise. Especially with an unknown clinician. Contact your local Dressage chapter.