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Are they really Amateurs?

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  • #41
    is Article 808, not 809, really ....

    Article 808. Amateur Status.

    1. Regardless of one's equestrian skills and/or accomplishments, a person is an amateur for all competitions conducted under AHSA rules who after his/her 18th birthday, as defined in Art. 107, has not engaged in any of the following activities which would make him/her a professional (for professionals wishing to be re‑classified as amateurs, see Art. 810.2.1):

    a) Accepts remuneration for riding, driving, showing in halter/in hand, training, schooling or conducting clinics or seminars.

    b) Accepts remuneration for giving instructions in equitation or horse training. (Persons acting as counselors at summer camps, who are not hired in the exclusive capacity of riding instructors are excluded and persons giving instruction and training to the handicapped).

    c) Accepts remuneration for employment in other capacity (e.g., secretary, bookkeeper, veterinarian, groom, farrier) and gives instruction, rides, drives, shows in halter/in hand, trains or schools horses, other than horses actually owned or leased by him/her, when his/her employer or a member of the family of said employer or a corporation which a member of his/her family controls, owns, boards or trains said horses.

    d) Accepts remuneration for the use of his or her name, photograph or other form of personal association as a horseman in connection with any advertisement or article to be sold.

    e) Accepts prize money in equitation or showmanship classes.

    f) Rides, drives or shows in halter/in hand in competitions, any horse for which he/she or a member of his/her family or a corporation which a member of his/her family controls, receives remuneration for boarding, training, riding, driving or showing in halter/in hand.

    g) Gives instruction to any person or rides, drives or shows in halter/in hand in competitions any horse, for which activity another person in his/her family or corporation which a member of his/her family controls will receive remuneration for the activity.

    2. The following activities do not affect the amateur status of a person who is otherwise qualified:

    a) The writing of books or articles pertaining to horses.

    b) Accepting remuneration for officiating as a judge, steward, technical delegate, course designer, announcer or participating as a TV commentator, or accepting bona fide remuneration for services as a veterinarian, groom, farrier, tack shop operator or breeder, or for accepting bona fide remuneration for boarding services.

    c) Accepting reimbursement for expenses without profit.

    d) Accepting a token of appreciation, other than money, for riding, driving or showing in halter/in hand. (Note: Horse board, prize money, partial support or objects of more than $300. are considered remuneration, not small tokens of appreciation). (Also note: accepting any amount of money, whether more or less than $300., is considered remuneration.)

    e) Having the occupation of veterinarian, groom, farrier or owning a tack shop or breeding or boarding stable in itself, does not affect the amateur status of a person who is otherwise qualified.

    I think a working student who is a junior is an amateur, because all juniors are amateurs, but I see no way that an adult can be a working student and an amateur unless, as MargaretF, they work entirely for free! and pay every bill themselves too, since barter counts.
    Mal:This is the Captain. We have a little problem with our entry sequence, so we may experience some slight turbulence and then .... explode


    • #42
      Could someone please explain to me what is and is not allowed to be done by a working student, or what is the "official" definition? I would at some point in the not too distant future like to be a working student or like some type of intern at least for a summer or something but I don't want to do anything that would jeopardize my status. I also agree with anyone who thinks that the reason there are so many "shamatuers" is because there is no division for anyone unless they can easily do 3'9 and up like all the time. I am perfectly capable of training a decent pony or schooling some of the farm's school horses but I have hardly any experience when it comes to the "A" circuit and am no where near the ability of some of today's "professionals". I really wish that the AHSA could make the whole issue a little more user friendly.


      • #43
        I will never cease to be amazed at the creative ways people justify cheating the system by semantics. If you teach and train...you are NOT an amateur. Twist the words and the rule anyway you want..dsguise it as "giving back" or whatever...you are part of the problem, not the solution and you are why alot of your fellow amateurs really don't like what you are doing and how you are doing it. I guess you need an attorney to interpret the rules the way some people choose to read them...You teach, you train, you are a professional. This is a very sore subject with alot of disgruntled REAL amateurs who are sick and tired of going by the rules while others thumb their noses at the same and blithely go about doing whatever thet want, regardless of the rule of "law". It's really sad.
        The thing about smart people, is they look like crazy people, to dumb people.


        • #44
          I applaud your nobility MargaretF BUT you are by all standards a professional and have the responsibilities of one. Do you pay for teacher's insurance? If not, you are also not very bright, because even though you are doing this for fun and to help out the little kiddies, you are legally responsible for their well-being, their advancement and their safety at all times and can be held accountable if an accident occurs. It is amazing how soon people change and file lawsuits against a "volunteer" when things go awry. What kind of certification do you have in order to teach in this place? And even though you teach for free and to give back, why would you, admittedly an amateur and one that is not particularly competitive, believe that you can train riders? It sounds like you want to help these kids on an emotional level which I am sure you do, but riding ? that is something different.
          If your barn carries insurance for you as an instructor, guess what sweetie, then you are a professional. If they do not and you get your own insurance for teaching riding lessons and/or training horses, you are also a professional.
          Yes, people talk and knowing what you do, most local people are going to resent your appearance in the Adult Amateur ring and anyone else who is affiliated with your barn who shows as an Amateur and is out there teaching lessons. This is not right and deep down, you know it.


          • #45
            Ms. S. Don't sit on your thumbs! Report these people to the proper channels as the next horse show and let them prove that they are amateurs. The proof is not up to you.
            I know for a fact that a couple of the young women in the M&S are not amateurs, but they are sure still riding as one.


            • #46
              The fact is that the loop holes and contamination of the Amateur Rule have been and are expansive. There was a time when they tried to make 14 year olds professional while those who trained and rode for the Olympic Team were amateurs.

              No one has come up with a valid definition that did not jeopardize the very people you describe. Those people are showing at the behest of those in charge. I wish there was an answer, there was a survey taken several years ago, and the results were chucked in the round floor file and never published.

              If there ever was a mission, a definition of amateur is that mission. Think about it, all Olympic athletes are supposed to be Amateur.
              http://www.usAHSA.org and http://www.noreinstatement.org


              • #47
                <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> You teach, you train, you are a professional. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
                Not true.
                You get paid, or get a discount, or goods, or get services- you are a professional.

                You don't get any money, discounts, good or services for ANYTHING, you are an amateur.

                chief feeder and mucker for Music, Spy, Belle and Tiara. Someone else is now feeding and mucking for Chief and Brain (both foxhunting now).


                • #48
                  I really admire your determination and reason for teaching, Margaret. There are so many troubled teens out there, and so few adults who really take an interest in them and want to help them. (Obviously, we'd not have so many troubled teenagers if there were an ample supply of responsible parents and adults.)

                  But, I think you probably realize that what you're doing is against AHSA rules.

                  With that in mind, could you not figure out a different way to reach out to these kids - involving horses - that isn't questionable? What about something along the lines of "riding theory" or "group therapy?" Just 30 minutes a week or so for the kids to let out their frustrations and talk about their week. I could see using tools like essay writing contests, other barn-related contests to promote self-awareness and improvement, etc. You could even develop a program with your local department of human services, etc.

                  Just some thoughts. I really do admire you for having the courage and confidence to "bust yourself out" on the bb! But if I were you I'd really consider ditching the questionable practices.

                  I know how I feel about the AHSA amateur rules, because I utilize the arena of a friend who rides in AHSA amateur divisions. She has helped me a lot with my show-jumping, but it's very clear that she *is* an amateur. She sets poles for me and will recommend jumps to hop over, but she doesn't, at any point, even resemble "teaching a lesson." She might say, "see if you can add a stride on the bending line," or something to get me thinking, but never does she take over the ride from the ground.

                  When blood is the beverage of choice, the sharpest fangs feed first.


                  • #49
                    Can of worms anyone????

                    As someone stated earlier, it all boils down to honesty, not ability. We all know atleast one person breaking the amateur rule and maybe the reason we get so upset over it is the fact that there's not much you can do about it.
                    Yes, you can protest, but who wants to be known as "oh, that's the person who busted out so and so". Nobody likes conflict and nobody wants to be known as the "bad guy", even though by protesting a known offender, you've done nothing wrong. Tough situation.

                    I think the rule itself needs to be re-examined and we'll never be able to make everyone happy, but is it possible to atleast make it fair?


                    • #50
                      I can understand the reluctance of some of these people to file a protest .First it costs $100 (I believe)which you only get back after the AHSA has found in your favor .I was told by a very very well resected steward that the AHSA does not throw out many amateur status issues .In otherewords the person protesting would have to have the actual cashed checks ,made out to the person in question,with "teaching lessons" written in the memo .He told me that even then,the hearing committee would not decide against the "amateur".

                      Also the "bad Blood " that results from this kind of thing makes it hard for anyone to be comfortable standing there at the ingate.It is a shame that amateurs need to pay for their riding and showing by teaching under the carpet so to speak.It isnt right,if you buy and sell teach and train even if you sell horses i.e. anything besides your own animals ,are the secretary at a barn (ANSWERING THE PHONE FOR C SAKES) you are not allowed to hold an amateur card .You can't even be a groom and get paid!but They do consider farriers vetrinarians and braiders eleigible to hold amateur cards.But you can go to the olympics and hav endorsement contracts and still be an amateur.

                      Now here is the difference,there seems to be two types of amateur.1)the type we are all discussing here,shows in hunters and jumpers with classes labeled AMATEUR ADULT OR AMATEUR OWNER
                      2)olympic caliber atheletes who get endorsements from big international companies ,to work around the amateur thing but are in an entirely different continent from the first group of amateurs. It really isnt fair at all.


                      • #51
                        Where ever a line is drawn, people will inevitably get as close to it as they can, without going over. And sometimes it seems like splitting hairs to define what an amateur is or is not. But a line must be drawn SOMEWHERE.

                        Years ago in California, the "Cece Durante" rule was enacted. As many of you might know, she is the daughter of Jimmy Durante and is an excellent rider. After her JR years, she started showing (for free, because she certainly did not need the money) horses in her barn in the A/A division to school them. She was clearly acting as a professional, in every sense of the word but the financial one.

                        So a rule was enacted (sorry I cannot remember the exact wording of the rule, but it has been a while and my memory fades...) to prevent wealthy people from stepping over the line, while less fiscally fortunate people could not do the same thing.

                        Are there any Californians out there who remember this rule and the wording? Merry -- you would have been an active show ring rider during this time--can you help me out here?

                        The INTENT of the amatuer rule is to keep people who teach/ride/handle horses for others on one side of the line and those who don't on the other. Call it what you will: "Giving back" is one term. But it is still violating the INTENT of the rule.

                        And I agree about the insurance thing. If the barn covers you under their liability policy, you are a professional. If you have your own, you are a professional. And if you have a trust fund and are teaching children without insurance, you are crazy. You could end up "giving back" the bulk of that trust fund should one of those children ever be seriously hurt in a lesson with you.

                        There will ALWAYS be inequities created by such a rule, but who ever said that showing was "fair"?
                        "He lives in a cocoon of solipsism"

                        Charles Krauthammer speaking about Trump


                        • #52
                          You hit the nail (nails) right on the head.

                          If I didn't have such a terrible earache (leading to a headache), I would chime in at length myself.

                          Some people sleep perfectly well at night knowing that they are s-t-r-e-e-e-e-c-h-i-n-g the limits of what is deep-down kosher. (like Bill Clinton, for example...LOL)

                          Enjoying this thread. [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]


                          • #53
                            Sorry but if you teach or train, you are a professional...If you do it for free, you are a very stupid professional...No amount of semantics and dancing around the truth will change the FACT that you are CHEATING the system, yourself, and the true amateurs out there. Rationalize all you want, you are WRONG and are not brave enough to either admit it, or give up you "status" and live the truth. If you are good enough to teach and train, do it. Stop hiding behind the rule and the semantics and DO THE RIGHT THING. People are amazing creatures. And De Nile is NOT a river in Egypt.
                            The thing about smart people, is they look like crazy people, to dumb people.


                            • #54
                              Last evening, I posted an item in this thread observing that Miss S. had, herself, been witnessed as potentially in violation of AHSA rules; to wit: Articles 302 and 2703. My post has mysteriously vaporized into thin air. Yet, Miss. S.'s initial post, which precipitated this entire thread, and accuses Margaret F. and her training facility of complicity in conspiracy to violate AHSA rules, possible federal wage-hour law violations, possible federal child-labor law violations and if, in fact, her allegations of check-writing fraud are to be believed, possible federal RICO violations, remains intact. What's going on here? Is this not an open forum? I remain confused. [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_confused.gif[/img]


                              • #55
                                Since I read every single post when it came on, I don't think you are right GoGoGirl and if you are who I think you are, your house is not very clean either and I wouldn't be the one out there throwing "them thar stones" at someone who has had the guts to blow the whistle, albeit anonomously on a Maryland barn with bad practices and who obviously use their amateurs for their professional staff and still flaunt them in their divisions and possibly in their ads along with their achievements as amateurs. [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_frown.gif[/img] [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_confused.gif[/img]


                                • #56
                                  [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_rolleyes.gif[/img] [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_rolleyes.gif[/img] [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_rolleyes.gif[/img] My 2 cents!
                                  I think it is great that you want to help out at your barn MargaretF, but you and others like you are what makes other amateurs feel cheated out of being a legitimate amateur. Although you and your associates are not making tons of money here with your lessons and coaching, it is still just that you are acting in a professional capacity. Some of my amateurs "barnsit" when I am away, some fill up the water buckets on a weekend or evening when help didn't come, some toss a pat of hay to the horses and some stand beside the ring and "help out" a nervous adult or worried child during the time until I can be there at a horse show and they do this out of love and helpfulness and I believe this is probably why you do it; the difference is you do it all the time and so do your associates there and mine might do something like that once in 6 months or hand walk a beginner after their lesson.
                                  I am not saying you are not a special kind of gal for wanting to "give back" and quite honestly if there is one thing I wish I could do in this life, it is to make enough money from anywhere other than horses so I could do all the horse things and not have to charge a lot of talented people who don't have the means to do more, BUT I would still be a professional because I am a teacher and a trainer and I always will be and honey, so are you!


                                  • #57
                                    Ok, about 2 years ago, I did 2 beginner lessons for my trainer because I was at the barn and she got held up somewhere else. In addition, I taught the Intermediate show team one lesson. At the time of those lessons, I was doing the morning feed and was given a reduced rate for board for my feeding services. I only did those 3 lessons, and it was a fill in at the last minute kind of thing. I was not reimbursed in any way for those lessons, not even more than the usual reduction in board. So am I a professional? Ha ha watch me ride.
                                    Man plans. God laughs.


                                    • #58
                                      Technically..yes you are. If my 76 year old mother (who owns the barn ) trail rides a customers horse, she too is a professional. Your attitude isnt pretty and does NOTHING to help remedy the situation, which some find NOTHING to laugh at or mock openly. You too are part of the problem, not the solution. This is so sad. No one has the gonads to stand up for what is right and wrong and those involved openly defy the system, double dog daring people to report them and SUCCEEDING! The AHSA needs to READ this page and look into some of these cavalier attitudes by the shamateurs out there. Your attitude (and that of MANY others) is nothing to be proud of...ride away, but what goes around, does eventually come around. [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif[/img]
                                      The thing about smart people, is they look like crazy people, to dumb people.


                                      • #59
                                        Oh get off your high horse, Jumphigh. At the time I did those lessons, I had no idea that I was breaking a rule and was just doing a favor for my trainer. I did not grow up in the show ring, and had only been jumping for 3 years. I would never begin to think that I am capable of teaching, and spent the lessons praying for my trainer to show up. MY ATTITUDE is that it is shameful that some people knowingly bend and break the rules, and it is pretty much typical of AHSA competition that this is happening. It's a farce with the person who has the most money/most expensive horse/most training rides winning the most ribbons. There are very few TRUE AMATEURS, who ride their own horses all the time, competing. It is a shame that the AHSA has to write these rules and competitors don't have enough class and sportsmanship to compete in the division in which they belong. My "Ha ha watch me ride" was self critical. I don't think anyone would ever mistake me for a pro.
                                        Man plans. God laughs.


                                        • #60
                                          The problem I have with this situation is that it prevents a true professional from earning a living. If there were more people teaching riding for free it would reduce the amount of positions available for "real" professional horseman trying to earn a living. Many amateurs turn professional without having ever shown a horse and yet they hang out a shingle and charge $25/hour for a lesson while you may be offering much more quality and safe instruction for $50 an hour, this is bad enough as the "new" person in the sport can not diseminate the information about who they have chosen to take lessons from. When you start teaching for free it makes me feel like I should just forget about trying to even run a legitimate business. And, even if you aren't getting paid SOMEONE IS. The person writing the check for the lesson I am sure has no idea what is going on, and that disturbs me the most.

                                          OFF SOAPBOX NOW AFTER VENTING
                                          Owner/Trainer of http://www.plumstedequestrianctr.com