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Paying to be a demo rider.

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  • Paying to be a demo rider.

    Meh.... The organizer of a large clinic/instructor certification course in NJ this summer wants demo riders (they are calling them 'student' riders) to pay.... $250... to be "guinea pig" riders for 4 days. No extra charge for stalls. How nice of them.

    I demo rode at Jane Savoie's instructor cert course last October. She didn't charge people to demo ride. (If she had wanted to charge demo riders there is no way I would have gone.) In the end, hurricane Katrina made it challenging to get any riders to show up at all for the second two days. Rotten luck on that.

    But really. Charging people to demo ride? Ok, for Anky or a recent Gold Medal Olympian you can probably get away with that.

    I recall a few years ago a local farm went begging for demo riders last minute for a R Dover seminar/clinic/something. They were asking like $400 or some such (if I recall the # correctly.) To demo/guinea pig ride. No wonder they were having a hard time finding folks.

    Do you think they are going to get people to pay $250 to be "guinea pig" riders at a 4 day certification course?
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  • #2
    I think it depends on what the format is. But in general, no, I wouldn't do it. Years ago, I got roped into being a demo rider for an "Instructor" seminar - we were promised lessons every day and NOT told there was a charge until we got there - a 4 hour trailer trip, hotel already paid for, and we got charged for the program AND for stabling. I was pretty mad! There were 3 of us that came from the same barn, and we were only "used" once or twice - turns out the good lessons (with the instructor who was flown in from overseas) were reserved for the hosting barn's students. So entire trip cost us over $500, and we got one or two group "lessons" that weren't even lessons. So - at this point if someone asks me to demo ride, I dig my heels in and refuse to pay anything. Once burned...

    More recently, I was asked to demo ride for another (different) Instructor seminar and was told I'd have to pay stabling and maybe a small fee - again, I turned it down. Guess several other people did too, because they decided to not charge.

    If it was a chance to ride with someone like Conrad Schumacher or Kyra Kyrkland, yeah, I'd kick in some money But in general, in a situation where you are riding to demonstrate to an audience, the audience gets more then the demo riders out of the event.

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    • #3
      I haven't seen too many of these types of demos other than what they show on TV but it seems to me that the "demo riders" are more like clinic participants and are getting quite a bit of training during their time. I would think that would be worth something.
      Doubled Expectations (Roxy, 2001 APHA)
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      • #4
        Originally posted by Isabeau Z Solace View Post
        Meh.... The organizer of a large clinic/instructor certification course in NJ this summer wants demo riders (they are calling them 'student' riders) to pay.... $250... to be "guinea pig" riders for 4 days. No extra charge for stalls. How nice of them.
        depending on the quality of instruction & they're boarding my horse for 4 days, no problem
        If it's just basic, basic then no ...

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        • #5
          It's for instructor certification? Well, I wouldn't pay for the "honor" of being the test subject for an instructor who may or may not have the chops to teach yet. Pay for a clinic with a BNT? Sure.

          If you learn something from the session, that's gravy, and good payback for taking the trouble to show up as a guinea pig. I've demo'd for learner judges and did it for free -- it was good experience for me and my mare and we got some useful feedback from the learners. But I wouldn't have gone if I'd had to PAY to be a demo rider.

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          • #6
            Being a demo rider is no fun and far from a learning experience. You'd have to be a half wit to pay for that. All the instructors are only interested in brown nosing the testers and sometimes at the rider's expense. (For the most part the prospective instructors are not terribly gifted). The whole dog and pony show is a bit of a joke. I have done several locally as a training experience for young horses.
            ... _. ._ .._. .._

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            • #7
              Being a demo rider is all about donating your time and your horse to the demo. The time is not for you. Therefore I will donate my time and gas, but I will not pay extra to do it.

              There is also a limit. I was another one of the people who was supposed to demo ride for Jane's clinic during hurricane Sandy. I had already trailered the horse from Buffalo NY to Gladstone for the purpose, and Sunday afternoon with the weather still rolling in we turned right around and went home. I don't care who you are, I will not kindly ride my horse through a hurricane.

              Apparently people were bypassing roadblocks to get back to Gladstone for all the downed trees and washed out bridgesTues morning.
              Yeah, no. Not with my horse, we don't.
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              • Original Poster

                #8
                The clinic organizer claims that they have no trouble getting 'student riders' to pony up $250. Somehow, I am not entirely sure I believe that.

                Are there any Cothers out there signed up to either ride, or participate in the teacher training for the Centered Riding Certifications, end of this June and July at NJ horse park?
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                • #9
                  Actually, I would have to be paid to ever ride in a demo "taught" by wannabe-instructors. I don't trust most of the qualified instructors let alone someone who is still learning how to be one! Hell no!
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                  • #10
                    Looks like "Centred Riding" has gone parelli since Ms Swift died.
                    http://www.centeredriding.org/default.asp?pageid=10031

                    The "clinician"; http://www.centeredriding.org/instru...asp?int_id=124
                    ... _. ._ .._. .._

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                    • #11
                      Yeah, NO.

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                      • #12
                        That's complete crap. People are so money hungry these days.
                        "And I'm thinking you weren't burdened with an overabundance of schooling." - Capt Reynolds "Firefly"

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                        • #13
                          They'll get people. Guaranteed.

                          I had a coach who was brilliant at stuff like that. To the point where people PAID HER to use THEIR FANCY HORSES to get her rider credentials and eventual judges' ticket. She charges commissions to find her own future show horses under the guise of helping clients find their next horses.

                          Horse people are great at spin. All she had to do was tell them what a great experience it would be for their horse, and that the horse would improve as a result. These were finished, extremely fancy, already-showing-at-coach's-level-and-beyond horses.

                          This tactic tended not to work with adult riders, but it was sheer genius on the rich, non-horsey parents of teenage girls.

                          Likewise, all coach had to do to ensure her certification class (or whatever) got demo riders was to tell her riders that they were going. End of story. She could even convince coaches at other barns to send their riders.

                          I don't tend to find this sort of stuff in horse professionals who deal with mostly adults. In my area, the big Dressage coaches generally have clients that are adults, very few teenagers or kids. It seems to keep things more honest. The above-mentioned coach IS a Dressage coach, but her big business is...you guessed it...as a Hunter coach.
                          Lifestyle coordinator for Zora, Spooky, Wolfgang and Warrior

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by SCMSL View Post
                            Actually, I would have to be paid to ever ride in a demo "taught" by wannabe-instructors. I don't trust most of the qualified instructors let alone someone who is still learning how to be one! Hell no!
                            Agreed! I won't even pay $15 to ride in a schooling show with beginner L judges let alone pay $450 to be a demo rider with beginner instructors.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Equibrit View Post
                              Looks like "Centred Riding" has gone parelli since Ms Swift died.
                              http://www.centeredriding.org/default.asp?pageid=10031

                              The "clinician"; http://www.centeredriding.org/instru...asp?int_id=124
                              Where do you get Parelli out of that ? I have done several Centered Riding clinics. There is very often unmounted work that includes lecture and demo.

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                              • #16
                                I think she means with all the of the "levels" of certifcates and such and lots of talk for it to boil down to a 2nd level (if that) clinician trying to charge you what you would pay for a real dressage instructor who has been through the levels.
                                ~~Member of the TB's Rule Clique ~~
                                http://www.off-breed-dressage.blogspot.com/

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                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by SCMSL View Post
                                  Actually, I would have to be paid to ever ride in a demo "taught" by wannabe-instructors. I don't trust most of the qualified instructors let alone someone who is still learning how to be one! Hell no!
                                  I'd have no issue paying $250 to be a demo rider for this clinic
                                  Philippe Karl's School of Légèreté
                                  - that's less than the auditing
                                  Unfortunately it's not so simple to be a demo rider for that program.

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                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by alto View Post
                                    I'd have no issue paying $250 to be a demo rider for this clinic
                                    Philippe Karl's School of Légèreté
                                    - that's less than the auditing
                                    Unfortunately it's not so simple to be a demo rider for that program.
                                    Ugh - quell horreur - I know - Legerite is $350 per each 4-day clinic just for auditing and $400 per each 4 day clinic for spectating.

                                    Gosh - where are these prices coming from???

                                    I guess if I lived close enough to this Centered Riding clinic and I knew if had a good reputation I pay the $250 as long as stabling/trailer parking was free...

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                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by belgianWBLuver View Post
                                      Ugh - quell horreur - I know - Legerite is $350 per each 4-day clinic just for auditing and $400 per each 4 day clinic for spectating.

                                      Gosh - where are these prices coming from???

                                      I guess if I lived close enough to this Centered Riding clinic and I knew if had a good reputation I pay the $250 as long as stabling/trailer parking was free...
                                      What is the $50 difference between auditing and spectating?
                                      The Noodlehttp://tiny.cc/NGKmT&http://tiny.cc/gioSA
                                      Jinxyhttp://tiny.cc/PIC798&http://tiny.cc/jinx364
                                      Boy Wonderhttp://tiny.cc/G9290
                                      The Hana is nuts! NUTS!!http://tinyurl.com/SOCRAZY

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                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by meupatdoes View Post
                                        What is the $50 difference between auditing and spectating?
                                        It is < $50 to audit because you must commit to all of the sessions (12 in total or 3 groups of 4 sessions) over the 3 years.

                                        But what difference does that make - I wonder? Its still hors du prix!!!

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