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Using multiple trainers; do you inform them?

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  • Using multiple trainers; do you inform them?

    My horse will be starting 30 days of hunter training where I board. Love the trainer, know it will be fabulous. But I've only known her a few months.
    I have plans to take my horse to my old barn (different state) for eventing training with my old trainer (just a week or two of "bootcamp") about a week after his initial 30 days (the timing was just by coincidence). Also love the trainer, know it will be fabulous.

    I love both trainers, they just do different things and I want my horse exposed to both. Eventing trainer is aware of hunter trainer, as I've known eventing trainer for several years, but should I bring it up to hunter trainer? I plan to continue to take lessons and show with hunter trainer. I have concerns that the hunter trainer may see that training over XC fences will "undo" everything she's taught. I don't feel that will be the case, but can understand that viewpoint. I strongly feel that the "well-rounded education" he'll receive over natural XC fences will be beneficial. Anyway, I tend to follow the "it's easier to ask for forgiveness than permission" motto, and worry that if I open up the can of worms before he goes to eventing trainer, hunter trainer will ask me not to go, in which case I'll have to openly defy her.

    I don't plan to lie; hunter trainer will notice that he's gone for a week and will naturally ask where he's going, but by that time it will be too close to cancel the trip. (I plan to pay full board, just like I would if he was going to a show, so that's not the issue)

    Or am I reading way to much into all this and it won't be a problem? I'm re-entering the "show barn" atmosphere after over a decade of boarding at low-key barns, so I'm not entirely sure of the etiquette.

  • #2
    Will it not be obvious when your horse returns and is going differently?
    Any trainer worth their salt will notice that the horse looks and feels different... and probably will be curious about where a horse they just put quite a bit of time in to is going.

    I would be honest and forthcoming with information, when everyone is on the same page things will go better. If the hunter trainer is unhappy about the situation and you plan to do similar things in the future it is better to know now so you can find someone in agreement with your style of training.
    www.jazcreek.com
    Specialized Equine Rehabilitation, Reproduction, and Fitness in the Wine Country of Northern California

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    • #3
      It is your horse and you can do whatever you want. BUT the trainer may feel her reputation follows with the horse and if this doesn't work out and the horse doesn't take to two different styles then they have the right to say goodbye. A trainers reputation is their business and so it has to be protected. I think it appears sneaky to say nothing so that isn't good.

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      • #4
        Well where do you plan to end up? With the hunter trainer or w/ the event trainer? or continue with both. I personally appreciate your wanting to have your horse receive a well rounded education - but make sure the event trainer is worth their salt. There are many good ones out there but in my area I continue to hear "we don't need to do lead changes until..." from quite a few of the popular but lesser quality trainers (event) So if your horse is balanced and will change his leads w/ the hunter trainer but the event trainer doesn't encourage the change, then that can be an issue later... (this is just an example)...

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        • #5
          Is this a young horse????

          I have a problem with 30 days of "Hunter training" one place followed by 7 days of "Eventing training" in another. What can be accomplished in 7 days the other trainer can't do?

          That is just enough time to get the horse confused. Basics are basics and one trainer or the other can probably do better with this one given more time instead of chopping it up into 2 sessions with different riders in different disciplines that sometimes conflict.

          Ummm.. if it's outside fences and natural obstacles you want the horse exposed to, your Hunter trainer is perfectly capable of taking the horse out of the ring.

          Otherwise, there are some differences between Eventing and a show Hunter that may get this horse confused.

          Just don't think it's a good idea.
          When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

          The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.

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          • #6
            I think it's very hard to ship your horse out to Trainer B when you board with Trainer A.

            That said, I use two trainers for my DD's youngster but he lives on my farm, so I feel like that gives me some latitude when scheduling his lessons. If I boarded with either trainer full time, I would not think of shipping out for a week or more of training, though I would not hesitate to ship out for a single or multi day clinic.

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            • #7
              I keep mine at home and use multiple trainers, though more one than the other these days...I think it could be quite confusing for a young horse to be toted around from barn to barn. I think if you were just using it as a week to hack out with old friends, it would be a more reasonable, understandable situation. But boot-camp after 30 days of bootcamp somewhere else? Seems confusing for all involved.

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              • #8
                Whatever you do, be up front with everyone. The trainer may be embarrassed if she hears about it through the grapevine. If she's not comfortable with the arrangement, talk it over and make your decision. I work with several (hunter) trainers (due to one of them taking off for Florida for 3 months) and I feel it works out well, but there are no basic conflicts in their philosophy or methods.

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                • #9
                  Make sure everyone is in the know. Beyond that, it's your horse! Really, how much are they going to "know" after 30 days with any trainer beyond "go forwards and jump"... getting out of the ring will be good.
                  "Adulthood? You're playing with ponies. That is, like, every 9 year old girl's dream. Adulthood?? You're rocking the HELL out of grade 6, girl."

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                  • #10
                    Sorry, but if your horse is going to be "confused" by being asked to travel in different frames, then he has no business being an event horse. The whole point of three phases is to have your horse able to shift gears, while relating each of the 3 disciplines to the others. If *you* are confused by the differing instructions, though, you can certainly mess up your horse if you don't know how to make the different trainers' philosophies work together in a cohesive fashion. Trainer-hopping is risky if you don't know how to tie it all together.
                    As for the original question, you can never go wrong being up front with a trainer. It's a sign of respect. If you lie to her (omission is still lying), she'll be offended even if she likes the other trainer and agrees with your thinking.

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                    • #11
                      I agree withe that emotion that you need to be up front and tell her. But you probably should've done that before you paid her to sit on your horse for 30 days.

                      I'm also in agreement with I don't understand why you would put 30 days on this horse with one trainer, then go to a totally different style for 7 days and then return. If your horse is green it can be very confusing for him/her.

                      Your hunter trainer could easily take the horse XC schooling over natural obstacles if that's what you wanted. I know ours would love to go "play eventing" to go jump some fun natural jumps.

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                      • #12
                        I think you'll get into trouble here-- the bolded parts:

                        Originally posted by morganpony86 View Post
                        Anyway, I tend to follow the "it's easier to ask for forgiveness than permission" motto, and worry that if I open up the can of worms before he goes to eventing trainer, hunter trainer will ask me not to go, in which case I'll have to openly defy her.

                        I don't plan to lie; hunter trainer will notice that he's gone for a week and will naturally ask where he's going, but by that time it will be too close to cancel the trip. (I plan to pay full board, just like I would if he was going to a show, so that's not the issue)

                        Or am I reading way to much into all this and it won't be a problem? I'm re-entering the "show barn" atmosphere after over a decade of boarding at low-key barns, so I'm not entirely sure of the etiquette.
                        1) The horse world is too small for "I'll do what I want and clean up the mess later."

                        2) Thinking of your relationship with your Hunter Trainer as involving defiance. You own the horse, the trainer works for you. If the trainer has veto power over what you do, then you have a larger problem, IMO.

                        3) The difference between lying by commission and lying by omission is worth considering here.

                        4) Meh, not etiquette so much as business practice. IMO, you need to be up-front with everyone and autonomous. You want to be treated the same way, right?

                        I have no opinion on whether or not your training plan is a good idea. That's your call as an owner. You can ask both your pros for an opinion. You can supervise what your Eventing trainer does and say "Uncle" if you think the horse is getting badly confused. You also have the right to make a mistake with your own horse and the pros you choose.

                        Just my .02. I do ride with more than one trainer. I do let everyone know. I do welcome their opinions. I do take responsibility for the good and bad decisions I make for my horse. It works out because no one feels they are to blame for my horse's career trajectory.
                        The armchair saddler
                        Politically Pro-Cat

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                        • #13
                          I ride with a number of trainers at different times for different reasons. My new young Tb is with my main trainer right now. He will likely go to another trainer next fall for some work on open field riding (hunting and some just long trail riding) and really to be assessed by her for what he may need. Sometimes I need help with my riding so I go to another trainer and later on in his training he will work with the dressage trainer at my barn.

                          I am very open with everyone and if I have a problem with some of the training I speak up. For dressage-I ride hunters-I need to ask for a little less contact and more focus on hind end fitness. It has never been an issue with any of the trainers I've worked with. I am responsible utimately as MVP has stated and there is not a great change in the training just different approaches, the dressage training is likely a couple of years from now. Most people know that I work this way , and my main trainer can get sensitive about it but she usually learns along the way by seeing different approaches to teaching. Just be upfront about your goals and needs.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            He's your horse

                            You can do whatever you like. I am definitely of the "be upfront" school of thought. I think you might damage your relationship with the Hunter trainer if you are not direct with her.

                            Just my .02

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                            • #15
                              Does your trainer own your horse? If not - YOUR horse - YOUR rules. You do not need to ask permission. You are perfectly within your rights to ship out and train or clinic with whoever you want. Be upfront, be honest, but be nice.
                              "The standard you walk by is the standard you accept."--Lt. Gen. David Morrison, Austalian Army Chief

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                              • #16
                                I personally think it is a good idea to get some exposure outside of the ring. I think I would be totally upfront with Hunter trainer that you would like your horse to have this experience. With my old trainer we had outside solid jumps that even the green horses jumped for something different. If either trainer is any good they should both see the benefit of the other. At the lower levels it is all the same basics. It is not like BN riders go out there and gallop the whole course. I am sure the event trainer will just be cantering around, and if they know that the horse is going back to the hunter world they will understand what to do with it (if they are good). I think if you are upfront about it, it will be much easier. That way your Hunter trainer knows what is going on. If the hunter trainer feels that going and jumping out in a field over solid jumps is going to mess the horse up then they are not a great trainer either. If both are good and professional they will understand that this will not hurt the horse, only benefit it.
                                http://community.webshots.com/user/jenn52318

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                                • #17
                                  I'm going to be the voice of dissent here- I think it is important that a young horse just learning to jump is in a consistent program. Hunter riders and eventers can approach jumping in very different ways, which can lead to confusion on the part of the horse, and set back training (as you fear the hunter trainer will think). Cross-training is great, but your hunter trainer and eventing trainer should be on the same page about how the eventing trainer is going to approach the horse's xc fence training.

                                  I'd probably put more than 30 days of hunter training before adding a new trainer/method to the equation, if in fact it is a young horse just getting started. And when you do go, make sure that eventing trainer has talked to hunter trainer so she knows how the horse's training has been approached thus far.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by War Admiral View Post
                                    Does your trainer own your horse? If not - YOUR horse - YOUR rules. You do not need to ask permission. You are perfectly within your rights to ship out and train or clinic with whoever you want. Be upfront, be honest, but be nice.
                                    True but -TRAINER'S barn- TRAINER'S rules so if the trainer is not informed and on board with the plan don't be surprised if you are not welcomed back and are asked to leave.
                                    Auventera Two:Some women would eat their own offspring if they had some dipping sauce.
                                    Serious Leigh: it sounds like her drama llama should be an old schoolmaster by now.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by wanderlust View Post
                                      I'm going to be the voice of dissent here- I think it is important that a young horse just learning to jump is in a consistent program. Hunter riders and eventers can approach jumping in very different ways, which can lead to confusion on the part of the horse, and set back training (as you fear the hunter trainer will think). Cross-training is great, but your hunter trainer and eventing trainer should be on the same page about how the eventing trainer is going to approach the horse's xc fence training.
                                      ^^^THIS ^^^
                                      Auventera Two:Some women would eat their own offspring if they had some dipping sauce.
                                      Serious Leigh: it sounds like her drama llama should be an old schoolmaster by now.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        I voted for "the owner gets to make mistakes" and tried not to get into the training question. But Wanderlust is right, IMO.

                                        Originally posted by wanderlust View Post
                                        I'm going to be the voice of dissent here- I think it is important that a young horse just learning to jump is in a consistent program. Hunter riders and eventers can approach jumping in very different ways, which can lead to confusion on the part of the horse, and set back training (as you fear the hunter trainer will think). Cross-training is great, but your hunter trainer and eventing trainer should be on the same page about how the eventing trainer is going to approach the horse's xc fence training.

                                        I'd probably put more than 30 days of hunter training before adding a new trainer/method to the equation, if in fact it is a young horse just getting started. And when you do go, make sure that eventing trainer has talked to hunter trainer so she knows how the horse's training has been approached thus far.

                                        IME, Hunter Trainers do the very best job of early training for jumping horses. They use lots of poles on the ground, minimal rider micro-managing (for a horse that's not yet really strong and really broke) and look for a quiet, thinking horse. YMMV with Eventing trainers and horse just learning to jump. Mine has.

                                        If this horse were mine, I'd really leave the jumping to the Hunter Pro until the horse could at least trot in and canter quietly out of a line with a minimalist ride. I wouldn't throw any "XC fence" more than the occasional small log on a trail at the young horse until I had this Hunter Foundation. I do think spending a week going "outside" on the flat and learning to think and be quiet out there is a great idea.
                                        The armchair saddler
                                        Politically Pro-Cat

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