• 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

Working Student

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Working Student

    I know, I know, another working student thread.

    I'm thinking of becoming a working student next year, and I want to start doing some research and plan ahead. I would really like to go to a dressage barn somewhere in Germany and I was wondering what I need to know before I take the plunge and actually start applying to places. I've never been to Germany (actually, I've never been outside of North America!) what would I need as far as a work visa or equivalent? What kind of expectations do most stables have? (I have heard that most Germans are extremely hard working and expect as much or more from their staff/working students.) Anything else that anyone could tell me would be fantastic, whether it is personal experience or tips, etc. I am not afraid to work hard, I just want to be properly prepared mentally, physically and emotionally for the experience.

  • #2
    I don't have much advice or experience to offer other than the fact that most people who I know who have went to Europe to work just "realized how much they suck at riding!!"

    Good luck, it'll be an incredible experience! Also, I wouldn't limit yourself just to germany - check out Holland, Ireland, etc as well!


    • #3
      I was a working student in the states. HIGHLY recommend the experience (here or abroad)! In reference to karlymacrae's statement about learning "just how much you suck," don't have to go abroad for that one! Anyone worth slaving yourself out for had better be a good enough teacher with frequent enough lessons that you get that realization pretty quickly - even if you don't actually suck. The point is they should push you hard in your lessons, regardless of your current skill level. As far as the hard work part, I find it hard to believe it's going to be too different from any good legit WS position stateside. You will work 6-7 days a week from before sunup to after sundown. It's all hard work to earn your lessons. But the education and overall experience is invaluable! DO IT!!!


      • #4
        If you go to Germany, get ready for the deep litter experience. LOL!
        Banter whenever you want to banter....canter whenever you want to canter.


        • #5
          Germany will be an eye opener if you get to go. Germans certainly are hardworking and expect high work ouput from all of their staff. Hopefully you are good at sweeping! The sales barns I went too were spotless all the time. Another poster said expect them to push you hard in your lessons - I wouldn't expect to get formal "lessons" in Germany, although it might depend what barn you are at. Also, don't necessarily expect to ride a lot at first, you might be expected to prove yourself first. I was a working student in Germany in 1999, so things might have changed a bit.

          Instead of formal lessons, if you are riding, you will likely be expected to learn by observation. Pay attention to what the senior riders are doing and try to imitate them, you will learn a lot that way. My experience was that the more senior riders would sometimes help me for 10 or so minutes once in awhile (read, 10 minutes of coaching/instruction/sometimes yelling) with one of the sales horses I was riding. If you are end up as a rider at a sales barn you may be expected to ride 7 or 8 horses a day - no grooms to help you either, so expect to be efficient with your time.

          Advice I was given before I went there, and I'm sure its still true for the most part, is don't expect a lot of praise. One of the cultural differences between Germany and North America is that Germans will typically only say something to you if you are doing something wrong. If they don't say anything, you are probably doing fine Praise is not given very often.

          What level are you currently riding at? I was riding at 3rd level, schooling some 4th when I went to Germany, and was considered a "good" rider at my home barn, riding 3 horses every day. When I got to my job in Germany I was definately the worst rider/least experienced there! As another poster said, expect to find out how little you really know!

          It was the experience of a lifetime, but definately not for the thin-skinned! You will learn a ton though!

          I'm not sure how easy it will be for you to get a riding job and a work visa without some connections. I had a connection through a German dressage clinician that I lessoned with. Would it be possible for you to find a working student position with someone in North America who has European connections? Then you could use those connections to get to Europe?

          Others might have more advice on the finding the job part, I was extremely lucky in that the job was pretty much handed to me, thanks to the German clinician setting things up for me.


          • #6
            ace** has some excellent advice (I laughed about the sweeping).

            I haven't worked in Germany but I have worked in Switzerland and the two cultures are very similar. I've had lots of horse jobs and pride myself in being a hard working person. I've always had my horses on my parent's farm so I'm very aware of the amount of work that goes into upkeep of a property. However, I was blown away by the expectations there - and I was even at a private showjumping yard! I remember I was about a month into my stay and my bosses had a "talk" with me about my work ethic. At this point I thought everything was going just dandy. Of course, as ace** already mentioned, they don't say anything until you've done something wrong. Of course, as soon as I walked away from them I burst into tears. And I remember phoning my Mom up (who is Swiss) and telling her about how terrible and useless they thought I was and she told me that's just how Swiss people are. She said I didn't need to actually do more work, I just needed to make it SEEM as if I was doing more work, being more productive and busy, by little things like walking faster, etc. This is what I did and it totally worked. I just had to act like a Swiss person.

            They are very anal though. Very. They freaking love having everything swept perfectly. My barn had this huge long cobblestone (tree-lined - and this was fall) driveway that had to always be spotless. The thing I always think about when I think about that job is sweeping. Endlessly.

            (PS: Good luck on your search. I, also, am leaving in Sept for a year to go do the working student thing at a couple dressage yards. You should check out England -- they have lots of great yards and things are a little more relaxed there and you'll probably get more hands-on experience than you will in Germany).