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Trainers: do you give holiday gifts to your clients?

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    Trainers: do you give holiday gifts to your clients?

    For those of you teaching/training, do you get holiday gifts for your students and clients? If so, do you get a "standard" gift that you give to everyone? Or personalized presents?

    Input and suggestions appreciated!

    (If you receive gifts from your trainer, please also share experiences)

    Last Christmas I was new to my current barn and my coach gave all of her boarding clients a quarter sheet embroidered with the barn name and in the barn colours, personalized with our initials. I thought that was very generous. Others barns I've been at have given cards along with a carrot or small box of chocolates. I gotta say I appreciated the quarter sheet

    One possiblly very tacky thing (tell me is this tacky?) that I've been coveting for a while now is getting a nylon halter in our barn colours with my horse's name embroidered on it for turn in\out. I've always thought that could be a practical gift for borders - cheaper than leather halters with plates and would look cute in barn colours.


      My last trainer didn't but my current one does. According to my friend, last year she gave crops and saddle pads, (depending on the age of the student).


        My trainer did, she gave me some nice riding gloves!

        but for me just getting a card makes me happy!


          Honoring her inner Martha Stewart

          Christine Thoerbeck George of ShowSports gave really lovely presents to their clients back in the 90s when we were there. One year, she gave Breyer sized chocolate horses complete with white chocolate markings individualized to look like your horse! They had some wine labeled with the farm name one year. The most wonderful gift - and mind you I was a low end client in terms of showing - was a professional photograph, framed, of my horse. He's trimmed and groomed and to say it's stunning doesn't do it justice.

          No other trainer has given anything - not even a card!


            My trainer did framed professional photos of everyone's horse, or their favorite one at the barn for those of us without a horse of our own, last year. Agree with Tobias though, cards are great especially if trainer takes the time to write a little personal note... doesn't need to be much, just a sentence or two.


              My trainer gives gifts to every boarder in barn colors/logo. First year was a show pad embroidered with the barn logo, next year everyone got turnout leads in barns colors, and last year was a barn colors little bag embroidered with each person's name for 'extras' at shows, to keep things more organized


                My trainer growing up always gave the lessons kids something special for Christmas. One year it was an ornament of a picture of us and our special horse. Once I got my own horse and was working everyday, the gifts became more special, like a decorative hoofpick, an ornament that looked like my horse, and last year she gave us Willow Tree horse figurines.


                  My old BO/trainer gave the same gift to everyone. One year it was a jar of homemade horse treats, other years it was peppermints done up all festive and cute. Another year everyone got personalized name tags for lead ropes (Horse Name/Last Name- Dobbin Smith) which was both cute and really practical for the barn staff Another year she made everyone matching blanket bags/covers for on the stall doors in the barn colors. That wasn't so much a gift for us as it was for her, because I couldn't exactly take them to my next barn haha, but it was still really nice.


                    I give my owners and adult riders nice picture frames. I am too poor to give fancier stuff, LOL.

                    For my young students, I have a huge party (for all customers - it is a pot luck) and have lots of kids gift items out there. I do a silent auction of those gifts and the riders use "Moola" which is play money they earn during the year. They earn their play money by doing well in lessons, helping around the barn (sweeping, picking up, taking out trash, etc.).

                    This is my way of not showing favortism with the kids. They earn the play money they get to spend on gifty stuff. I have boxes of chocolate, crops, gloves, Breyer stuff, stuffed animals, tee shirts, and lots of other stuff. Then we do another auction and someone gets to pie me in the face.

                    They love it and I hear from lots of people (including friends and visitors who ride at other barns) that I have the best holiday party they have ever seen.
                    Every man has a right to his opinion, but no man has a right to be wrong in his facts.
                    Bernard M. Baruch


                      Not a trainer, but have been the recipient of some nice gifts....
                      One year the trainer got all the kids with their own beasties a bridle/halter tag with beastie's name. My girls still have theirs. Saddle pads are always popular - hats and fleece throws with farm name & colors too.
                      Y'all ain't right!


                        I am too poor to give good gifts! ( see my thread on horse care on colic).
                        But I give everyone something. The last couple of years I have made candy and I make a hot chocolate mix with different flavors.
                        This year I orderd a Christmassy type of thing with farm name on it, less than $3.00 each.
                        One year I took a picture of each person and customized the frame, like one said "pony jock", for my toughest little kid.


                          My trainer gives out gift certs from a local tack shop, I think that is a lovley gift!
                          FMO:OMG I almost put my eye out hunting clique.


                            My trainer has given lovely gifts over the years: leather grooming halters, pads, horsey gift bags and my favorite of all time, from when he and his partner went to NYC--gold chain necklaces with a single pearl. Gorgeous and very appropriate for a barn full of adult women.
                            Proud member of the "Don't rush to kill wildlife" clique!


                              I've only been with my trainer for a little over a year, but last holiday season she gave each person a personalized duffel bag in the barn colors with the barn logo and each person's initials. It was very generous, but she said she was tired of people losing their stuff at shows or things being loose all the time... so it was really for her own satisfaction as well as ours.
                              Different flavors of crazy, but totally NUTS. You know its true. - GreyHunterHorse



                                I always do give gifts to my students and boarders. Let's see if I can remember some of them:

                                - show pad with barn logo
                                - small duffel bag with barn logo and their name
                                - large coffee mug with photo of them with their horse
                                - goodie bag containing hay net, hoof pik, horse cookies, sweat scraper, sponges, etc
                                - jacket with barn logo and their name
                                - caps & polo shirt with barn logo

                                This year I am giving.......(oh, wait! some of them lurk here!) I have a great one for this year, though.
                                Visit Sonesta Farms website at or our FaceBook page at Also showing & breeding Cavalier King Charles Spaniels.


                                  Mine makes us lovely ornaments that are personalized for us/our horses. Last year were adorable miniature dress sheets in our colors (or hers for lesson kids who didn't have colors), the year before an apple with our horses' head hand painted, the year before a snow-globe with a photo of our horse and us. Can't wait to see this year's!
                                  A proud friend of bar.ka.


                                    I had a coach who gave her students home made fudge. It was nummy.


                                      I got Pandora style (knock offs) bracelets for my adults, they are all a little bit different, but each has a silver horse charm in the middle. For the kids, I got them beaded bracelets with a horse charm. One of my co workers makes jewelery on the side, so I got them for a very fair price. Now I just have to figure out who would like which colors the best!


                                        My trainer would always do something every year... I mostly remember hand painted stall nameplates, saddle/bridle plates for the tack room, and custom pads with barn logo/initials.