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Who was/is the best trainer you ever had?

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  • Who was/is the best trainer you ever had?

    You know that being a great rider doesn't make you a great trainer.
    Some are BNT, others are not, but are worth their weight in gold. I guess the key is to be able to explain not only tecnical things simply, but also being able to convey a feeling in such an explicit way that you can almost feel it yourself. And they also must have great timing when to say things, or when to push and when to stay put..

    Who do you think is one of the best trainers you have ever had? The one you most learned from?
    Over what hill? Where? When? I don\'t remember any hill....


  • #2
    Kate Worsham without a doubt. I still ride with her =) ... I was a very timid and nervous rider due to a previous trainer who wasn't the nicest person in the world. From day one Kate has made a HUGE difference in my self confidence!! I love her even though she can be an equitation natzi at times haha


    • #3
      I'll play

      Only considering past trainers and not present, Ginny Sorkin. She imparted in me the greatest amount of my "horse philosophy" that i use to date; she is the most ethical person I've ever met, and even though she's an ammy herself now, she always makes time to answer all the questions I throw her way, be it horsey, non-horsey ethical, or crying to her like a mommy when my heart gets broken.

      I think what made her the best was her ability to explain things in ways that made sense so they were easier to apply and understand the purpose. She is very much into flatwork and taught me a great respect for the benefits of lateral work and other basic dressage/flatwork and I use it all to this day. She also made sure I knew how to thoroughly take care of a horse/tack/set course etc. so my practical knowledge dates to her.


      • #4
        Who do you think is one of the best trainers you have ever had? The one you most learned from?
        The one I ride with now and have been riding with for the last almost 12 years!

        I have had 7 other instructors and truthfully, I'd call them just that, instructors. My very first one, I still think of as a good horsewoman. She knows her stuff but she taught me when I was 8 and then moved on to have a family when I was 10. I learned a lot but she didn't have the time to teach me beyond w/t/c/jump 2ft on packer school horses.

        My current trainer is randomly threatened, er, reminded gently , that she's not allowed to stop teaching me! I hope some day to be half the rider/horsewoman she is. She knows her stuff, has been there done that but you'd never know it to look at her. She's spent her time in the big rings, she's shown and won at the Garden, rode with some of the biggest BNT's but can still start a kid w/t and take them as far as she went - she has the most peaceful manner and has patience of a saint! She is a wonderful person and a fantastic gift to horses. She's one of those naturals-she touches the reins and horses just respond...it's amazing to watch!

        My retired horse would literally change his body language and over all expression when he heard her voice. He knew the "smart one" was there to help his poor mother figure out what the heck she was doing!
        Lord Stanely, Lord Stanley - come back to Pittsburgh!!!
        *** I LOVE PUIKA FAN CLUB***


        • #5
          I had two that I would consider "great". The first is Arlene Orr Amery (Windy Top Farm, Chester NJ) who taught me as a pony kid. She laid a good foundation in riding AND horsemanship. She was a Frank Chapot student and passed on a lot of Franks wisdom. She encouraged us to hang out at the horse shows to just watch and learn. She took us on field trips to USET finals and Maclay finals, so we could see how the "big kids" did it. She didn't put up with any garbage and ran one of the tightest barns I have ever seen. She also taught me that you can do anything that you believed you could, even if that meant buying an old retired lesson pony, cleaning her up and going to A shows. She told me that I could win if I wanted to and I won Middlesex and Monmouth on that $500 pony- all because Arlene said I could.

          The second was Maxine Best who trained me as an older junior. She helped me with style and got me a lot of great rides that I would have never gotten without her help. She was very honest and outspoken. You knew exactly what was expected of you and she didn't settle for anything less. Always ride your best. I was a limited budget kid. She always said that lessons were for learning and that we went to the shows to win. No wasting time. No wasting money. Simple as that.


          • #6
            Cathy Simm of Hunters Run. There may be trainers with better timing and tact, but her teaching of all-round horsemanship, showmanship, and true empathy for the animals has made me a far better competitor and horse person than the trainers who simply inflated my ego and sat me on fancy horses for the sake of making more money.


            • #7
              Amy Sherrick von Schiller (sp?) formerly of VIC, now of Cazenovia!


              • #8
                Not counting present trainers, the two I got the most from in the shortest time were
                Gene Estep
                two semi-private lessons. I fully credit those two lessons with getting me past my "B" test. Particularly with getting the "stopper" round clear- NOBODY else, including his owner, could get him round with less than one stop at almost every fence. Also with understanding how your weight, and "sitting vs standing" are used as aids. The fact that it was a semi-private, with my sister on a VERY different horse from mine, made it particularly valuable- the difference between what he told her to do (on a hot horse) and what he told me to do (on an elderly, lazy horse) is something I have internalized and used ever since.

                Sally (Lord) Ike
                2 weeks of "Pony Club clinic" at GMHA. The "image" she created by saying that, when you go around the corner you need to "change to a lower gear" so you "keep the revs up" even though you are going slower, is another thing that has stuck with me.

                Both of these were 1971 or earlier.

                By the way, I still see Sally Ike at meetings and events, but does anyone know what happened to Gene Estep?

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


                • #9
                  The best trainer I've ever had is the one I had now. Though currently I am very frustrated because she's having a mid-life crisis and changed her cell phone number and lost contact with everyone. When I first started riding with her two years ago, I was in the most advanced group at the lesson barn I started at and I felt like I was going no where. From the very first time I took a lesson with her my riding started changing dramatically. i can ow win the eqs. I'm dissappointed I'm moving and I wish I could take her with me. She's no big name trainer and comes off as difficult with some people but without her stubborness I would not be where I am today. Not only has she taught me alot about riding, she has taught me alot about life in general.

                  If she had more money she could have the potential to be as big as Beezie Madden or George Morris.


                  • #10
                    My present trainer....

                    Melissa Jones Sarle at www.Paramountshowstables.com She is the first trainer I've had that "nagged" me for a whole winter to fix my lower leg. It's pretty much fixed and man, it makes a difference. She has made me into a much better rider than I was two years ago and she believes in me and that makes a difference too. I learn a ton watching her ride as she is so darn soft but effective-rides beautifully! She has added a lot of details to my ride and I know I'm better off for it.


                    • #11
                      Not to sound cliche' .... but my current trainer. I have learned more from her than all my other trainers combined. Though we may not agree all the time, her teaching methods have worked best for me.

                      My position is better than it ever was even better than when I was a kid... she knows when to push, and when to back off. She is always encouraging (unless I'm being an idiot and then she gets on my case).

                      She is very knowledgable and has a knack for being able to explain things in multiple ways depending on the rider so they can "get it".

                      She is also an accomplished rider and sets a great example.

                      She posts on here so I'll give her a little plug.

                      Angela Walker


                      • #12
                        Skip Billingham. Somehow, he gave me and the pony confidence to jump fences I never thought we could. If I still wanted to ride competitively in the hunters, I'd still be with him. I also won a lot with him.
                        Save a life...be an organ donor! Visit www.Transplantbuddies.org


                        • #13
                          I'm not going to give a name. However, I'll say that in my experience of having...oh...7 or so trainers, that the very best are those who build up your confidence and give you instruction that is translatable to lots of situations. I want to learn to apply it myself rather than to hear what I need to do in that very instant. Tough with a smile is perfect, too.
                          Re-riding "Mama" to two impish red-haired boys--a small 4 yo human and a very big chestnut TB hunter


                          • #14
                            Gary Henley is who comes to mind first with me.
                            Starman Babies


                            • #15
                              Orly Dehoyas, unfortuntely he is not with us anymore. He could make you feel like you could do anything when you walked up to the ingate. He instilled more confidence in me during the three years I rode with him than nay other trainer before or since.


                              • #16
                                my current trainer is all that i could have hoped for and more. she's young (only a few years older than me) which some people could view as a bad thing but really it's not. she can instruct me without being just a teacher, you know? i'm her only older student who rides more than once a week so we're pretty close. i came from a barn with another trainer who started me riding. i learned some bad habits from her-well not learned really but they were inforced because she didn't correct them. she was all right for beginners but i wasn't going anywhere with her and she refused to get any school horses only ponies (i'm 5'7'' with amazon legs) plus she wasn't that knowledgeable...we went to a show once and she had to ask my current trainer (who was her assistant at the time) how to measure the strides between jumps! i mean, i thought that was something most students knew how to do, let alone trainers. anyway, i consider my current trainer my friend (corny i know, but w/e) and we go on road trips to watch some big shows in the summer and stuff. i would be devastated if she ever moved/quit training!
                                Willow- http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?pi...&id=1125720084


                                • #17
                                  I loved Orley too...also John McConnell for schooling at horse shows--he's the only trainer who ever really helped me with my old jumper, & Tony Font--super great for clinics.
                                  "I never met a man I didn't like who liked horses." Will Rogers


                                  • #18
                                    Michael Henaghan. He's just brilliant... Tough, but brilliant.

                                    Aca-Believe it!!


                                    • #19
                                      I owe and thank Linda Will , Hunt & Hackaway in Milroy, PA for giving me solid basics and GM for polishing me off...
                                      Aefvue Farm Ft.Lauderdale


                                      • #20
                                        Hands down Thom and Wissie Brede. I trained with them for 8 years and they were the best riding years ever!
                                        Last edited by Briaffer; Nov. 8, 2006, 07:47 PM. Reason: did my math wrong :P
                                        "Riding a horse is not a hobby to be picked up & laid down, it is a grand passion. It seizes a person whole & once it has done so, he will have to accept his life will be radically changed." - RWE