• Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.



Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You’re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it—details of personal disputes are likely better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts that violate these rules. Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting, but administrators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts upon request.

Outright inflammatory, vulgar, harassing, malicious or otherwise inappropriate statements and criminal charges unsubstantiated by a reputable news source or legal documentation will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it’s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users’ profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses – Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it’s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who’s selling it, it doesn’t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions – Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services – Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products – While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements – Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be “bumped” excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues – Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators’ discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the “alert” button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your “Ignore” list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you’d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user’s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 1/26/16)
See more
See less

Bernie Traurig clinic

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Bernie Traurig clinic

    Hi. I will be riding in a 2-day clinic given by Bernie Traurig in a few weeks. It's all come together at the last minute, but I'm really excited!

    I'm sure there are COTH-ers who have ridden in his clinics or audited them. I would love to hear your experiences and get a sense of what I can expect. Also, any tips on preparing for it would be welcome (my horse and I will of course be properly attired and groomed to the nines).


  • #2
    I've organized two Bernie clinics. He is without a doubt one of the nicest, most patient people around. He will get on a horse to demonstrate and rides as well as he did when he was younger. The horses are his first concern, that they are willingly and happily working for and with you. He will show and explain how to establish a good working partnership right at the beginning of the ride.

    First day he tells you how he would like you to warm up for the horses sake, second day you are expected to do it on your own. Each day builds on the prior day.

    At my clinics we had a lunch break and he would answer questions and talk to everyone - auditors and riders alike.

    He brings headsets so he doesn't spend the two days yelling, each rider is outfitted with one. We patched one of them into a sound system to broadcast to the auditors what he was saying to the participants.

    Know things as simple as the proper way to tighten your girth while mounted and the proper way to adjust your irons while mounted.


    • #3
      bring a stainless steel loose ring snaffle (or a good reason why your horse should not be in such a bit). He is not a fan of the KK bits, sweet metals, or severe snaffles and will ask that they be changed. Very patient is an understatement.


      • Original Poster

        Originally posted by Dinah-do View Post
        bring a stainless steel loose ring snaffle (or a good reason why your horse should not be in such a bit). He is not a fan of the KK bits, sweet metals, or severe snaffles and will ask that they be changed. Very patient is an understatement.
        Good to know, especially since my most basic H/J bit (D-ring) and dressage bit (loose-ring) are KK bits. What does he have against the KK bits?


        • #5
          Likes mild, plain bits. Not a fan of happy mouth or the german silver alloys that cause saliva. Likes the horse quiet in the mouth if I heard him correctly.


          • #6
            I am a big fan of Mr. Traurig. I have audited a clinic and gained much valuable information. I noted that he is very patient, but also very clear and direct in his instruction. He really makes sense. He emphasized the importance of controlling your horse's stride (making the riders alternate the number of strides in a set line) and keeping your horse balanced from leg to hand. He also seemed to be a huge fan of riding in two-point, so be prepared to get your arse out of the saddle. I must say, as an auditor, watching Bernie two-point around for an hour or so was quite a treat


            • #7
              I've ridden with Bernie twice this year (yes, i AM lucky!). Loved it!

              As others said, he examines each horse's bit and wants your horse to go in a bit that the horse likes. He tests this by having you halt and back. If you can halt/back without your horse becoming resistant and flipping his head, you're fine. (Sounds like you're pretty knowledgeable about bits, so you're good there!)

              The headsets are awesome. It's like having Bernie in your head! They're a bit uncomfortable at first, then you don't notice them, then they're painful for the last 15 minutes.

              You have to listen every minute, even when he's talking with someone else. His conversation goes something like this. Say he's talking to one rider. He's looking at them directly and talking to them about an issue...something like this: 'use one aid at a time. don't use conflicting aids. your horse will get confused. left lead canter. do you see what i mean? try that again.' The tricky part is that 'left lead canter' meant EVERYONE. Sometimes it's a little confusing to know when he's talking to the group vs an individual.

              He's a big fan of the automatic release. More advanced groups will practice this a lot. He also wants hunter riders to sit the canter on the flat, not two point.

              Oh, and he usually offers a special on joining www.equestriancoach.com at the clinic, so if you haven't signed up, that's a good time to do it.

              He gave everyone equal attention and specific pointers on their issues. He rides a lot of horses at the clinic and it's awe-inspiring to watch. He rode my horse last month. It was awesome!

              Avoid conflicting aids. Backing is a rein-aid only...no leg. Canter depart is outside leg only, not inside leg. Halt is rein only, no leg (well, stretch up and use your body, then apply hand).

              Look at the top rail of the jump till you get there, then look over it. I've been taught to look way far away over the jump and Bernie said 'she's looking at the monkeys in the trees!'

              Oh, and we practiced a lot of 'transitions' within a gait. Collected canter to hand gallop to medium canter to collected canter, etc. Before you get on course, he'll have you make sure your horse is in front of your leg, which you can demonstrate by galloping a little in the courtesy circle.

              And yep, better make sure you know how to adjust your stirrups while in the saddle.

              Have a great time! I LOVE BERNIE!
              ~ Citizens for a Kinder, Gentler COTH...our mantra: Be nice. ~


              • #8
                I audited a clinic with him. He was wonderful! So patient and well spoken. I would love to ride in a clinic with him. Like others have said, have a nice simple bit. Other than that, he wasn't super picky... maybe don't have cheese grater stirrups in case he gets on your horse.. he said he likes basic stirrups too.
                .:: a n d i ::.

                Currently horseless and hating it!
                Missing two very special horses - Maddy & Perry


                • #9
                  It's good to know what a direct, indirect and opening rein are. The clinic I took with him these were focused on. When he asks what aids you use to stop a horse the correct answer is rein or hand... do not say leg, or seat, or voice or some combination of those things or he might ask you to halt your horse without touching your reins like he did to the teenaged boy in my group... the poor kid couldn't do it, got embarrassed and coped a huge attitude and then didn't come back the next day.... I wish Bernie had asked me to do it... the mare I was riding would park it if you said whoa. I rode my mare the second day. That was pretty cool.


                  • #10
                    Bernie is FANTASTIC. A wealth of knowledge and one of the most patient and positive clinicians I've ever seen. He's done two clinics here and taught all levels - we had people who just started riding and GP riders and everyone walked away happy.

                    As discussed - he is a fan of simple bits but not a tyrant about it. The halt comes from rein and hand (and he will ask each of you to halt), if you use the crest release - be prepared to get a lecture and he's all about the forward. Your horse should be used to transitions within gaits and be light and responsive.

                    Enjoy - seriously he's great
                    Visit us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ranchopampa or our website at www.ranchopampa.com


                    • #11
                      Only saw him at this year's Mane Event demo, but he was a gentleman, very plain and clear in his instructions. I liked what and how he said things very much.
                      The comment about bits is true, he may make suggestions, so bring a few.
                      Proud member of People Who Hate to Kill Wildlife clique


                      • #12
                        I rode in one of his clinics in the early 80's I remember him being very nice. At the time he didn't like running martingales, he had everyone take them off.


                        • #13
                          Years ago I rode in a clinic with him, had a great time, and learned a lot.

                          My horse was in a french link snaffle and very light in the mouth (lucky me)-- so no biggie there.

                          It was amazing to watch him ride my friend's flighty TB mare -- she was a tough ride but he made it look so easy. The mare was eventually given away for dressage -- that tough with jumps -- but he made riding her look like a walk in the park.

                          I do have to say he did lose his patience with one teenage rider -- "why don't you give this up and take up tennis" he finally said to her (after she failed to do complete a simple exercise despite many efforts)-- I was flabbergasted when he said it, but since i had seen her go through several nice horses (buying a nice horse, riding it poorly to the point it became a stopper, and then getting a new one), I think he only had the horse's welfare in mind.

                          I would ride in a clinic of his again in a heartbeat.


                          • Original Poster

                            Hi all! I so appreciate everyone's responses and suggestions. Thank you!

                            My biggest worry for the clinic was/is the bit. I thought I would be okay because all last week I rode my horse with either a mild D-ring or loose-ring and he was fine. At shows, I ride him in a corkscrew snaffle due to his running through the rein aids; this is also the bit my trainer prefers for me to use at home, but I tend to swap off because if he's behaving (which he usually does -- he's a good guy!) I prefer the milder bit.

                            Anyway, on Saturday, we had horrible weather and I had problems keeping my horse focussed. He was unusually naughty about running out of a small but somewhat spooky fence (which he jumped perfectly the day before) and we had a myriad of other problems. Now I know very well that changing the bit is not going to solve the problems, but I also think that we would not have had the issues go on for as long as they did if he had been in a bit that he respected more.

                            My worry is that at the clinic, being in a strange environment, I will want to have the stronger bit. But I don't want to this to be an issue. I'm thinking of having the loose-ring snaffle on my bridle, but also having the corkscrew available ringside as a possible back-up. Is this a good plan? Other suggestions? I will be trailering up the day before and I'm assuming I'll have a chance to ride in the arena that afternoon.


                            P.S. I'm fine with properly adjusting my girth and stirrups, I've reviewed the various rein aids, and we've worked on the rein-back. SO nice to have the heads up about these things!


                            • #15
                              Ha - just wait for the heads up you will get when you join a George Morris clinic!
                              Proud member of People Who Hate to Kill Wildlife clique


                              • #16
                                having a bit or two at ringside is a great idea.


                                • #17
                                  If you really want to be prepared, join equestriancoach.com and watch Bernie's videos before the clinic. It is well worth the money, IMO. I have never taken a clinic with him, but I feel like I have! I don't have a trainer at my barn, and everytime my I teach the silly filly a new trick everyone in the ring laughs while I crow, "equestriancoach.com!" I feel like I should bake all of the trainers on there Christmas cookies. They have no idea how important they are to me!
                                  Trinity Farm LLC
                                  Quality hunters and jumpers at Midwest prices
                                  Like us on Facebook:


                                  • #18
                                    Here's his complete clinic summary with vids...

                                    I have cliniced with him twice on both my horses and summarized one of them in this post:


                                    He's not that much of a bit nazi. He just does't like sharp edges on bits although he always tries to take you to the milder version of what you use (and he is right to do so). I started with a double reined gag and ended the three day clinic doing a full 4ft course on the snaffle rein (it's one of the last vids...if you listen carefully at the end he mentions something about it). He loathes crest releases, advocates non clashing aids (like the stopping and backing with no leg...that was a shocker but completely logical) and stresses you to listen to what your horse is telling you.
                                    It's a good idea to bring optional bits, anything you have: you never know what can be the best bet according to his opinion.
                                    He stresses direct and indirect rein aids, three types of leg positions (normal, braced or behind the girth), long and low warm up and prompt transitions (canter to walk, trot to halt, etc).
                                    He is brilliant: concise, direct and positive. He pinpoints the problem, gives you the solution, works with you on it during the entire clinic and gives you follow up/homework for after he's gone. All this with great humor and respect.
                                    Also, as someone else posted, he gives a special on joining his website when you take his clinics: JOIN! It is the perfect follow up and super complete. He will also answer your questions online if you mail him. My horses have only gotten better with his system. I can't praise it enough.

                                    Hope you have a blast and I must warn you: once you have done a clinic, you are addicted. Prepare for more to come!
                                    Over what hill? Where? When? I don\'t remember any hill....



                                    • Original Poster

                                      Originally posted by faraway46 View Post
                                      I have cliniced with him twice on both my horses and summarized one of them in this post:


                                      Hope you have a blast and I must warn you: once you have done a clinic, you are addicted. Prepare for more to come!
                                      Thank you very much for this information and for steering me to your summary and videos of the 3-day clinic you did. I watched all the videos -- you and your horse make a lovely team, btw. I really appreciate your advise and encouragement!


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by Justice View Post
                                        If you really want to be prepared, join equestriancoach.com and watch Bernie's videos before the clinic. It is well worth the money, IMO. I have never taken a clinic with him, but I feel like I have! I don't have a trainer at my barn, and everytime my I teach the silly filly a new trick everyone in the ring laughs while I crow, "equestriancoach.com!" I feel like I should bake all of the trainers on there Christmas cookies. They have no idea how important they are to me!
                                        You really should send Bernie this, he would love it.