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Why Do Trainers Ride Your Horses?

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  • #41
    Originally posted by Jumperatheart View Post
    Thats why if your horse has an issue, you work under a professional coach who can help you fix it....and you are doing it yourself so you can handle that situation should it come up again at a show.
    And sometimes you let the trainer work on it, so it DOESN'T come up at the show. To each their own, if you like to work through everything on your own and it works for you, terrific, if others want/need a different approach and it works for them, I don't see why it should bother you.

    I am one who has the trainer ride mine occasionally, sometimes even at a show if I can't take a day off of work to school him on a Thursday or Friday. If some of you are feeling bad for me that I am not developing a good bond, don't worry yourself, me and the horse are just fine. At least in my case. I have had him for 13 years, since he was an unbroke 3 year old. I don't think me saving my vacation time and letting a trainer hop on is going to ruin our relationship.


    • #42
      Originally posted by Jumperatheart View Post
      Thats why if your horse has an issue, you work under a professional coach who can help you fix it....and you are doing it yourself so you can handle that situation should it come up again at a show.
      I don't think having a trainer help equates to you not being able to handle a situation in the future. I don't get that logic. And I'm someone who pretty much has worked on everything on my own horse. But having a pro help my horse through something has the potential benefit of helping me too. Sometimes watching someone else work through something (especially if they're telling you what they're doing) can help you as much as it helps the horse. Some of the most profound lessons I've learned about horsemanship have come from watching really talented people ride.

      My primary goal as a horseperson is not to be able to handle everything, or to win blue ribbons. My primary goal is to have my horse going correctly and happily- if a professional can help accomplish that, and so I call in a professional, isn't that *just* as important to becoming a good horseman as working it out myself?

      Sometimes the most important skill a good horseman can have, IMO, is knowing when they need help and when to get it, then asking for it. (and really, even the very best riders and trainers in the country will have other people ride and give feedback on their horses, it's not like this is a "lazy ammy" issue )

      And again, I'm not somebody who runs to trainers for every little thing.
      "smile a lot can let us ride happy,it is good thing"

      My CANTER blog.


      • #43

        This is the first time I've ever used a trainer and for the first time in my life, I can say that my horse makes CONSISTENT progress towards the goals that I've set. I do most of the riding, but the trainer rides about once a week-or more often if I'm having a problem. I also get a lesson almost every week (it varies during show season).

        Here are my reasons;

        I don't WANT to have to be as strict with my horse as the trainer is. I'm the suburban treat giving wuss of a mommy. On the other hand, I want my horse to do the right thing and be as good as he can be so that we're competitive in the show pen. This means someone has to do the training part on a consistent basis. That's the trainer's job. I provide the cash and the treats (both horse and trainer).

        I'm an amateur and he's the trainer. I ride one horse, he rides many. He knows more than I do and certainly rides a heck of a lot better!

        He has the horse's respect and I don't (at least not consistently). Fortunately, the respect flows over from his ride to mine-at least for a little while-LOL!
        Not my monkeys, not my circus.


        • #44
          I have a trainer (well, right now it is a friend who is a lovely rider) ride my horse for me on a regular basis. What she can do is give my horse a confident, correct ride in situations where I might not be able to provide a good enough ride to create a positive experience. Example- jumping. I let my horse not jump for a few months. Trainer gets on and jumps- horse leaves long, jumps funny. Trainer quietly corrects her, makes the experience good for the horse. I could have jumped her, gotten left, ridden weak approaches- and it would not have been pleasant for the horse.

          Trainer rides do not absolve me from having problems- my horse still gets stiff, she spooks, she goes poorly. I don't hop on a made horse. I just hop on a horse who has consistent correct rides.

          I think the issues I have seen - rider gets on, horse is bad, rider gets off. Rider gets on, horse is bad, rider gets off. You can go from confident good rider to intimidated really quickly. Many people need a trainer to break that cycle. I know that when I moved my horse, I was very worried about her rearing and acting up in a new barn. My friend got on, rode, SHOWED me she would be fine. If my attitude was DIY- I'd probably still be lunging the mare and walking. However- a good lead from a good rider, watching the horse be good- has elevated my confidence- at the new barn I now WTC on trails and in the ring- mainly because my friend was having positive rides on my horse once a week.

          Do I have to share credit for my horses way of going- yes. But I also get to enjoy how nicely my horse goes thanks to the efforts of others. Also, because my horse is being trained, getting used to other riders, and not being allowed to get away with things, I'm making it more likely that if she ever needs to be sold, she can find a good home.

          Interestingly- when shopping for horses, i tried a young TB out that was being "trained" by an amateur. She was an OK rider, but in a year had not made much progress and the horse had some pretty steep issues. Life circumstances led her to sell the horse. She did not do that horse any favors and I believe ended up giving the horse away. Now, in contrast- the horse I bought and another one I considered had consistent pro rides and were rideable, doing enough to assess talent and sold to good homes (and their prices were not high- both south of $4k).


          • #45
            Originally posted by AmandaandTuff View Post
            My horse has seen less than 30 days of any professional. I can't stand someone else training my horses, I use different cues than most others.
            This maybe fine if you keep the horse forever. If, however, at some point you are forced to sell him/her, IMO you are doing the horse a diservice.
            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.


            • #46
              Generally speaking, I ride my own horse. My trainer has never been on my mare.

              That being said, I am breeding my mare next year. I will start the baby from the ground up, but - I am spending money breeding to a quality stallion.

              My current boyfriend (hopefully future husband) is a bit adamant about me not riding, especially since I had a horse rear up and flip over on me recently, causing me to end up in the hospital.

              So...if I am married in 6 years or so, and especially if I have kids, my Olympic dreams may take a sideline. It would not be fair to a well bred horse with talent (assuming the baby has talent) to keep him at the lower levels.

              In this case, I am most likely going to have my trainer take him to the 2, 3, and hopefully 4 star 3 day events (and, of course, the Olympics). It is not something I would have considered years ago, but life situations change, as well as priorities, etc.


              • #47
                My trainer pretty much never gets on my horse, and I like to keep it that way. They dont exactly get along.....
                Last edited by spmoonie; Jul. 31, 2008, 10:53 AM.
                "To do something that you feel in your heart that's great, you need to make a lot of mistakes. Anything that is successful is a series of mistakes." -B.J. Armstrong


                • #48
                  I don't own a horse, but occasionally in a lesson on a horse I'm leasing from the instructor or from one of her other students, I'll ask her to hop on for a few minutes. Usually it isn't anything the horse is doing wrong, but if I don't quite understand what the instructor is asking me for. When I hop back on in 5 or 10 minutes, the horse almost always goes much better for me, so I feel I get more out of the lesson in general.
                  Stay me with coffee, comfort me with chocolate, for I am sick of love.


                  • #49
                    My trainer has been on my horse once I think.
                    With my blessing - as we were new arrivals. What better way to see how my horse goes/works than to get on him?
                    But any issue comes up, it's her teaching me what to do/how to fix. He's not green though, just a wee bit lazy and a few cob webs up in between those ears.

                    Now, her daughter has ridden him, just to give him exercise when I can't get out - though honestly - I'd nearly consider that a pro ride, that girl can ride.
                    Jen Evans & DaBear


                    • #50
                      Because the trainer has the knowledge, experience & "feel" that I don't.
                      I'm an adult who never got to ride as a kid, bought the first horse who was a saint, carted my butt around & put up with my beginner mistakes (mostly). Trainer never got on this horse.
                      When I decided I wanted to move up in levels I purchased a new horse. This horse is quite a bit younger & WILL be a great horse for me when I am comfortable at the level I want to achieve. Currently, yes, he is too much horse for me sometimes.
                      This horse has gotten me off his back 3 times (once resulting in surgery that included putting a metal plate in my shoulder. That was not totally his fault, as I lost my stirrup & had a stupid fall, but still). So, needless to say, yes, sometimes this horse intimidates me.
                      Having trainer on him once a week helps in so many ways. As others have mentioned it gives him some good experiences instead of mom up there messing up sometimes & him being concerned/upset by that.
                      Also, I believe that the trainer knowing the horse & feeling what is going on from the saddle helps them train the rider. When I "whine" He won't do X (whatever I think I'm asking him to do) & trainer says "Use more leg" - I whip back "I'm using all the leg I've got!" Maybe trainer gets on next ride & sees that yes, he really is difficult to get to do that & trainer can make him more responsive. Positive for both me & the horse on our next ride, as he does not have to put up with Mom cramping her leg against his side to get something accomplished.
                      Having the trainer up there on this particular horse also helped determine that there was a pain issue going on, not just rider issue. Now that the horse is being treated for this he has been a "pasture pet" for the past 3 1/2 months. Will I be the first one on him when he goes back to work? NO WAY! for 2 reasons.
                      1. I know he is going to be a handful & the trainer can deal with/prevent issues like I can't.
                      2. I want him to have the best, most positive ride he can when coming back to work. He should not have to worry about his Mom flopping around on his back. The only focus he should have at that point is building muscle back up.
                      So, while his Mom is growing in her riding I don't want my horse to have to suffer for it all the time. He is the horse I will grow into - he just has to wait for me & while I am catching up I want him to be able to have some fun too.
                      Life is hard. Buy a freaking helmet.
                      Originally posted by meupatdoes
                      Whatever, go gallop.


                      • #51
                        The short answer is because I am adult enough to realize that I am not capable of doing the training myself and it would be VERY selfish of me to make my horse suffer thru me attempting to train him.

                        Some people (like me) are not very athletic. No matter how hard we try we can't run the mile, we can't leap over hurdles, we can not catch the ball, etc. In my case I can not feel what my horse is doing no matter how hard I try and if I do, I feel it AFTER the horse has done it, too late to fix or adjust things. I also lack the ability to make all my body parts move in the ways they have to right when it is best for them to move there.

                        Having a trainer work with a horse has nothing to do with having tons of money and not caring about the bond with your horse either. Geez people.

                        I do not see why it is so hard for some people to realize that all of us are just not good riders and no matter how many lessons we take we will never be good riders. Does it make it wrong that we want a well trained horse to take care of us? Does it make it wrong that we feel it is better for our horse to have good training that will not totally frustrate our horse?


                        • #52
                          Originally posted by blton9th View Post
                          I don't think I would always have my trainer putting in rides. However, if nothing else I would certainly have a trainer put the first 50 miles on a hot, unbroken athletic horse due to my parental responsibilities to very young children.

                          Mr. Blt, children, and other animals rely on me, I sure would look like an arse if I got hurt!
                          Been there did that 2 years ago. It was not fun having two small children and a broken back. Since then I realized that at almost 40, I don't ride like I did in my teens and 20s, and won't mess with one with a bad attitude ever again.

                          I send mine to my trainer for show miles. When she goes to Gulfport I send the youngins along to learn to live at a horseshow. It would take me two years to give them the same exposure that 6 weeks of an away show does.


                          • #53
                            My trainer is riding my new horse a couple times a week for a few months just to make sure that he doesn't learn bad habits from the mistakes that I might make, and he is also a re-sale project, so the more experience for him, the better.


                            • #54
                              I don't "need" a trainer to train my horse. I do need my horse to get ridden, preferably by someone who isn't going to mess him up. I work 60-80 hours a week, and thus am lucky to ride three times a week. I also travel a decent amount, so sometimes I don't ride for weeks at a time. This is not sufficient to provide horse with basic fitness.

                              Those of us who work long weeks to get to ride on the weekends are making other sacrifices so that we can enjoy the sport. Trust me, I would LOVE to be able to ride multiple horses everyday. It is just not in the cards right now.


                              • #55
                                My trainer rides once a week.

                                Why.....because I bought him at five and he is 8 now and still needs his weekly "tune ups"! That's what we call the training rides at my barn when our trainer rides. It's not every week, sometimes my trainer is at a show, or my horse is at the show. But, then if he's at the show, she rides him each day at the show.

                                Maybe later when my horse doesn't test me, he won't have to have trainer rides, but for now he needs to be tuned up from time to time.

                                For some reason the horses ALWAYS KNOW when our trainer rides them and they behave and work so beautifully. It's nice when I actually get to see her ride my horse. I'm always amazed how nice he goes with her, and how well she has him trained!


                                • #56
                                  Why do I have a trainer ride my horse?

                                  Because sometimes, after 10+ hours of working at an intense job, my brain is tired, my body is tired, the horse needs to get out and have a positive experience, and in spite of any skill I may or may not have, I am not going to be the person to give him that experience on that particular evening.

                                  Because the horse needs a consistent routine, and I like having a life sometimes, and don't want to always go to the barn 6 days a week.

                                  Because the horses that get trainer rides on a regular basis come along faster, more consistently, and with less holes in their training than when I do it alone.

                                  Because what you see from the ground and what you feel are sometimes two very different things and it helps to have someone else feel what you do so they can more accurately help you.

                                  Because I've made up horses before from scratch, and its not what I take pride in or want to work on anymore. Rather, I want to see 8 perfect distances, I don't want my tempo to change to make it down the line, I want perfect corners and perfect changes and perfect turns and rollbacks.

                                  And the ammies you are lamenting who get on at shows and win after having their horses ridden all week by pros while they are putting in the long hours to pay for the horse? Well, they win because unless their horse is a seeing-eye horse, they go in and ride well when it counts. I'd actually suggest they are at a disadvantage by being out of the saddle all week and not getting the riding time in that a lot of the folks here do.

                                  To each his own.


                                  • #57
                                    Originally posted by trubandloki View Post
                                    I do not see why it is so hard for some people to realize that all of us are just not good riders and no matter how many lessons we take we will never be good riders. Does it make it wrong that we want a well trained horse to take care of us? Does it make it wrong that we feel it is better for our horse to have good training that will not totally frustrate our horse?
                                    IMHO it is only wrong that more people do not recognise their own limitations. I have seen too many badly trained horses to count where the owner proudly proclaims that they have trained the horse themselves. Unfortunalely they have trained the horse to be a stopper, to buck through its changes, to motorcycle around the turns, to cut down after the jumps, to be one sided, etc, etc, etc
                                    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.


                                    • #58
                                      In the past year and a half I've had a trainer get on my horse probably 6 times. I've had 4 trainers in that time span (lots of change over) and I like for a new trainer to get on my horse to see what he/she will be working with. You can see things from the ground but sometimes you really don't know what's going on until you actually get on the horse and "feel" it. Most of my trainers are big on... you need to work it out and I'll help you from the ground. Since I'm the one that is riding the horse on a regular basis and I'm the only one that shows him.

                                      So 4 of the 6 rides were those "get to know my horse" type rides. The other 2 were because I was having a huge issue and I just couldn't fix it myself. I like having that option. I try and do the best I can myself, but sometimes, I just need more help than what they can give on the ground. I am always there when a trainer rides my horse. I learn from watching them.

                                      I don't have an issue with other people having trainer's ride their horses. Some are green... some need a tune up frequently... and some just need a rider who is more "removed" from the situation to fix something. Personally, I want to try and do it myself. It's the only way I'll learn to fix a problem or how to stop a problem from happening in the future. But everyonce in awhile, I just don't "get it" or I don't have the skill set to fix it.

                                      My horse is pretty easy going... but I have my weaknesses and sometimes they are the same as my horse's and I can't fix it on my own. So 2 of those rides were to fix an issue I was having that I just couldn't do myself. But it's nice to know that I have that option if needed.

                                      Different strokes for different folks.


                                      • #59
                                        I agree with you completely. I show Amateur Owned, Trained, and Shown and I value being able to go into that ring and compete against other people just like me. The only people who have ever ridden my horse are amateurs, and the only 2 people that have spent considerable time training him are myself and his other owner, who is a 16yo girl. We show on the A Circuit and are doggone proud of it!


                                        • #60
                                          Currently I have my trainer riding my horse twice a week, and showing when need be. Why...

                                          I work an insane, yet awesome job that has me working long days and sometimes weekends, thus I can't always make it to the barn.

                                          Also I have a chronic illness that I have developed in the last few years that sometimes has me with zero energy, let alone to work, so forget it about riding.

                                          I have been riding since I was a small child. I have put the time in on making a greenie into a made horse MANY times. Yes I could make the horse I have now, but now I have a good paying job, and it's nice to be able to go ride and not have to fix issues!