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Best way to become a Trainer

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  • Best way to become a Trainer

    I've posted a career topic before, but I think I've pretty much made up my mind. Before I ask my question I'd like to address some things that have been brought up before. Some were bringing up money, how later on I'd want to be able to afford things like new cars and stuff. Honestly, I'm not a materialistic person (always been like this), as long as what I have is in working order or I can fix it (things like cars) and it's not trashed, I'm perfectly happy with it. Another thing people brought up was things like vacations, but personally if you enjoy your job you shouldn't need a vacation from it. Now onto my question, what are some good tips/suggestions to becoming a horse trainer?

    I am a client/friend with the best (personal opinion) trainer in my area. She knows what she's doing and is very thorough in her training process, and is knowledgeable about health problems (currently works with a vet part time). I plan on shadowing her when I can over the summer (I've also set up with the vet to do some shadowing).

    I enjoy taking a horse and teaching them the things they need to know in life like being respectful, leading/groundwork well, and riding well so they don't end up in places like auctions or slaughterhouses at any fault of their own. I currently own a horse that I'm training to be a barrel horse (but also an all around horse as she's very talented) and I sometimes help out my horse-owning friends when they need something "diagnosed" or fixed, so I have some experience already. I know it takes a lot of work to have any success in the horse world, but I'm willing to do whatever it takes to have a career with horses.

    Even if I can't own my own horse, I'd like to work with them and bring them to their fullest potential. I'm not in it for the money, that's simply a bonus. I do have a backup plan if I need it. I was going to go for equine vet, but I'm not exactly a straight A student like I used to be (mostly just bad in pointless classes like advanced American History or Latin, which I know is important to an extent but this level has no used to me). I am in all honours, but I still don't feel I'd get into a good vet school despite my desire and motivation to, so I've gone to trainer.

    Sorry for the lengthy and probably all over the place post, I just felt some things needed some explanation. So, what are some good tips to becoming a trainer? I know it takes a lot of hard work, luck [lots!], and experience but like I said I'm willing to put forth everything I can. Thanks!

  • #2
    Business/accounting degree tends to be invaluable to the trainers I know. Definitely assess the feasibility of a degree (even of a two year variety - I believe there may be a relevant associates for this) because as much as the horses are a key part to success, knowing how to ride/train/teach is not enough.

    Also consider (and start) long term plans for assorted investments to succeed. A truck and trailer for showing and traveling and a collection of tack for horses of different builds are the two I can think of off the top of my head, plus figuring out what type of insurance you'll need to cover. You will have to put a lot of money into things with very little initial return (even if you stagger your investments - which is smart).

    Beyond that, many of the horse professionals I know still did pre-vet, or an agricultural science degree of some sort (farm management/experience) which are both good considerations.

    Ultimately it's about getting the mileage and the experience. Even good, experienced riders can make poor trainers because the breadth of their exposure isn't great (types of horses, problem behaviors, emergencies that trainers face). Beyond the financial planning and degree tracks, spend your time shadowing professionals. Figure out what types of situations that they need to be able to manage and learn what tools they have to do so. And then of course, continue to develop your own skills as a horse person.

    I'm sure I'm missing a lot here but I'm certain others will chime in and cover everything that I'm overlooking..

    Comment

    • Original Poster

      #3
      Originally posted by Edre View Post
      Business/accounting degree tends to be invaluable to the trainers I know. Definitely assess the feasibility of a degree (even of a two year variety - I believe there may be a relevant associates for this) because as much as the horses are a key part to success, knowing how to ride/train/teach is not enough.

      Also consider (and start) long term plans for assorted investments to succeed. A truck and trailer for showing and traveling and a collection of tack for horses of different builds are the two I can think of off the top of my head, plus figuring out what type of insurance you'll need to cover. You will have to put a lot of money into things with very little initial return (even if you stagger your investments - which is smart).

      Beyond that, many of the horse professionals I know still did pre-vet, or an agricultural science degree of some sort (farm management/experience) which are both good considerations.

      Ultimately it's about getting the mileage and the experience. Even good, experienced riders can make poor trainers because the breadth of their exposure isn't great (types of horses, problem behaviors, emergencies that trainers face). Beyond the financial planning and degree tracks, spend your time shadowing professionals. Figure out what types of situations that they need to be able to manage and learn what tools they have to do so. And then of course, continue to develop your own skills as a horse person.

      I'm sure I'm missing a lot here but I'm certain others will chime in and cover everything that I'm overlooking..
      I didn't think about the business degree, how lost I would have been! I believe there's a business course at my highschool, should I consider taking it or just get the degree? There's an equine rescue near my place, should I look into helping get those horses broke/up to speed? Thank you for your input!

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by TooMuchRebel View Post
        I've posted a career topic before, but I think I've pretty much made up my mind. Before I ask my question I'd like to address some things that have been brought up before. Some were bringing up money, how later on I'd want to be able to afford things like new cars and stuff. Honestly, I'm not a materialistic person (always been like this), as long as what I have is in working order or I can fix it (things like cars) and it's not trashed, I'm perfectly happy with it. Another thing people brought up was things like vacations, but personally if you enjoy your job you shouldn't need a vacation from it. Now onto my question, what are some good tips/suggestions to becoming a horse trainer?

        Like you I am not very materialistic. I think what people were driving at with the new car thing, is not you need to by brand new cars but new to you car because the one you have suddenly implodes to the point of not fixing it. I Also, while I absolutely love my job I do need a vacation from it. Many times it's a staycation, but I aslo have 30 days paid vacation every year.

        I am a client/friend with the best (personal opinion) trainer in my area. She knows what she's doing and is very thorough in her training process, and is knowledgeable about health problems (currently works with a vet part time). I plan on shadowing her when I can over the summer (I've also set up with the vet to do some shadowing).

        Shadowing is a good way to see if this is what you really want to do.



        I enjoy taking a horse and teaching them the things they need to know in life like being respectful, leading/groundwork well, and riding well so they don't end up in places like auctions or slaughterhouses at any fault of their own. I currently own a horse that I'm training to be a barrel horse (but also an all around horse as she's very talented) and I sometimes help out my horse-owning friends when they need something "diagnosed" or fixed, so I have some experience already. I know it takes a lot of work to have any success in the horse world, but I'm willing to do whatever it takes to have a career with horses.

        Even if I can't own my own horse, I'd like to work with them and bring them to their fullest potential. I'm not in it for the money, that's simply a bonus. I do have a backup plan if I need it. I was going to go for equine vet, but I'm not exactly a straight A student like I used to be (mostly just bad in pointless classes like advanced American History or Latin, which I know is important to an extent but this level has no used to me). I am in all honours, but I still don't feel I'd get into a good vet school despite my desire and motivation to, so I've gone to trainer.

        I wouldn't call Latin a pointless class. If you think you won't get into a good school despite your desire and motivation what will happen if you are not a good trainer? Not trying to pick on you, but you seem to be giving up before trying.

        Sorry for the lengthy and probably all over the place post, I just felt some things needed some explanation. So, what are some good tips to becoming a trainer? I know it takes a lot of hard work, luck [lots!], and experience but like I said I'm willing to put forth everything I can. Thanks!
        My thoughts are in blue. Lastly, I would like to add, many people through out my time working in the horse industry told me don't quit my day job. All of these people had degrees and had another source of income aside from training horses.

        Comment

        • Original Poster

          #5
          Originally posted by Denali6298 View Post

          My thoughts are in blue. Lastly, I would like to add, many people through out my time working in the horse industry told me don't quit my day job. All of these people had degrees and had another source of income aside from training horses.
          Yes I've gotten a lot of advice to shadow, and I did it briefly for an SAE project at school but haven't had time since. I do enjoy Latin and was just using it as an example (but it's still not as important as say Spanish in the modern day)but I feel some classes are only important up to an extent (like American History, which mind you, isn't even all of America just the colonies in the NC area and what not which I've been learning my whole life). As with giving up, I have noticed I do tend to give up if I feel it's not worth my time or I've gone too far to turn back. I've also noticed that I tend to give up a lot less horse-wise. I've loved horses since before I could even crawl and have noticed that's where all my motivation has gone, and if I can't do something (like have them side pass) I go back and look at what I've missed or what I could improve upon. No offenses taken to the picking on part, I appreciate what you've said good or bad! On the topic of another job, I've also seen many that have more than one. My trainer has one or two but they're also horse related, but I'm also fine with getting an extra non-horsey job.

          Comment


          • #6
            In addition to (NOT instead of!) the excellent suggestions already posted, find an oustanding, ETHICAL and successful ( = making a decent living training horses) trainer in the discipline you want to work in. Go ask for a job. Offer to work very hard for very little $.

            Go to work for them, muck stalls, walk hots, clean tack, do anything you are asked to do. Work your way up to exercising the more trained horses, then to helping with the greenies. Work your butt off, learn to interact positively with clients. Learn all the things that make your employer successful.

            Someday, your successful employer may begin to put you on new horses and you'll begin building a reputation and a client base.

            At some point you'll be ready to go out on your own. It's not an easy road, but IF you choose a good person to mentor you they'll be a friend for life.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by TooMuchRebel View Post
              I've posted a career topic before, but I think I've pretty much made up my mind. Before I ask my question I'd like to address some things that have been brought up before. Some were bringing up money, how later on I'd want to be able to afford things like new cars and stuff. Honestly, I'm not a materialistic person (always been like this), as long as what I have is in working order or I can fix it (things like cars) and it's not trashed, I'm perfectly happy with it. Another thing people brought up was things like vacations, but personally if you enjoy your job you shouldn't need a vacation from it. Now onto my question, what are some good tips/suggestions to becoming a horse trainer?
              It is very easy to say at 16 that you don't need a vacation from work, when you get a 2-3 month vacation each year. You know why my father found a 'real job' at ~30 after working horses? Because he wanted a decent place to live and decent car. That was 60 years ago. 20 years before that, he parroted your line.

              Some of I'm reading here sounds like you are almost defaulting to horse trainer as a cop out. At 16, who doesn't want to spend their life doing whatever their teenage hobby is? Your guidance counselors are not 100% correct. Many people do jobs they don't love or don't have a passion for and still have a fruitful, happy life.

              Look beyond your teen age comfort zone. Being successful (i.e. making money) is not something to be looked down on. It's oK to want a vacation & a decent salary - they don't have to come at the expense of job satisfaction. You also don't have to be defined by your job.

              I wouldn't pigeon hole yourself too much at 16. I could have easily said that I'm good in school, want to have horses in my life, I'm going to be a vet. I went to college got a degree in Chem, then joined the Navy & drove an aircraft carrier. I got out and have a job sinking ships. It's pretty cool. None of that EVER crossed my mind at 16. Never in my teen age years did I think I'd conn a CVN that was attached to a ship 150' away, while planes landed on the deck. I thought I'd be more likely to be a horse trainer. Be realistic, but don't underestimate yourself.
              Visit my Spoonflower shop

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by TooMuchRebel View Post

                I didn't think about the business degree, how lost I would have been! I believe there's a business course at my highschool, should I consider taking it or just get the degree? There's an equine rescue near my place, should I look into helping get those horses broke/up to speed? Thank you for your input!

                Take the course in highschool to see if you like it. Frankly, if you don't then I would consider re-evaluating your plans at large. You must be able to have a small business mindset as a trainer. And then if you do enjoy it, go get your degree in business (management or accounting are both good ideas). It will also afford you an opportunity to pick up "real" jobs that some of the equine degrees don't. A business degree is marketable to potential employers and so is business experience. Do not back yourself into a corner where you have been accidentally limited your options - a post above shared a story about her father in the equine industry and I think she has great advice.

                Volunteer with reputable facilities whose approach to horsemanship is good. Do not expect them to give you the opportunity to ride/work with their horses off hand. You likely will have to start from the bottom up (learning about equine management like feeding, daily care, and other routine concerns). Keep in mind many professionals have a (for lack of a better word) "go-to lackey". Being that person would be a great learning opportunity for you. But many pros already have their people so you'll have to work very hard to show you're serious about it to get your foot in the door.

                I also suggest you continue to improve your own skills in a lesson type situation. There are a number of passionate people who want to be in the horse industry. If there are three candidates who are all very passionate, hard working, and have a degree of skill with handling "problem" or otherwise green horses, a number of times the spot may go to the rider with the most polish who can not just take a misbehaving horse and stop bad behavior for example, but on top of that teach a horse how to comfortably navigate a jumping course or dressage movements etc.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by red mares View Post

                  It is very easy to say at 16 that you don't need a vacation from work, when you get a 2-3 month vacation each year. You know why my father found a 'real job' at ~30 after working horses? Because he wanted a decent place to live and decent car. That was 60 years ago. 20 years before that, he parroted your line.

                  Some of I'm reading here sounds like you are almost defaulting to horse trainer as a cop out. At 16, who doesn't want to spend their life doing whatever their teenage hobby is? Your guidance counselors are not 100% correct. Many people do jobs they don't love or don't have a passion for and still have a fruitful, happy life.

                  Look beyond your teen age comfort zone. Being successful (i.e. making money) is not something to be looked down on. It's oK to want a vacation & a decent salary - they don't have to come at the expense of job satisfaction. You also don't have to be defined by your job.

                  I wouldn't pigeon hole yourself too much at 16. I could have easily said that I'm good in school, want to have horses in my life, I'm going to be a vet. I went to college got a degree in Chem, then joined the Navy & drove an aircraft carrier. I got out and have a job sinking ships. It's pretty cool. None of that EVER crossed my mind at 16. Never in my teen age years did I think I'd conn a CVN that was attached to a ship 150' away, while planes landed on the deck. I thought I'd be more likely to be a horse trainer. Be realistic, but don't underestimate yourself.
                  I have to 100% agree with this post. Here is the deal. It isn't the horses that make life as a horse trainer difficult..... I think all of us would love to get paid to work with horses all day, but the reality of it is you have to deal with the owners of those horses. Some of them are downright crazy, some of them do not pay their bills and some of them will have extremely unrealistic expectations for their special bottle raised unicorn. Don't get me wrong, some are FANTASTIC!!!!!! But, in general, until you are extremely successful in the industry, you do not have the luxury of picking and choosing the horses or owners you work with.

                  My advice would be to get a degree in Business. Go to a community college for your basics to save money and then transfer to a University for your last couple of semesters. Try to graduate without loans if at all possible. While you're in school start training a few horses. Then, when you have had 4 years of schooling, and 4 years of training horses under your belt you can honestly assess whether this is what you want to do for the rest of your life.

                  If you had asked me before college what I wanted to do for the rest of my life I would have said the same as you. Now I know better. Turns out, I want to be able to enjoy my own horses and work towards my own goals. I want to be able to ride a horse for more than a few months and just when it is starting to go really well, I get to keep on with that success, not send it back to its owner. I have health insurance so I can have surgery on my knee without complete financial ruin when I snap my ACL longeing a horse. I can take a sick day. I have an awesome car that I can tinker with in my free time. Those vacations you say you don't want to take, turns out they are awesome and 9/10 I use them to go play with my ponies. I have a vibrant social life (which as a horse trainer is not easy) AND I get to go ride with my friends pretty much any weekend I choose.

                  The thing is, when horses become work, they become a lot less fun......

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    You seem to be quite determined with the horse trainer stuff. Which is fine, and I certainly don't want to take away from or discourage that too much. I'm sure other folks on this BB are of that same mentality. However, keep in mind you are speaking to people who are, by and large, adults. You don't need to heed everything an adult says, more so an adult that's a stranger. However, do appreciate that adults do speak from experience and age. As a teenager, your view of the world is often limited, and I feel people do a lot of growing in their 20's and 30's. Growth and change never totally stop, but I've done a lot of finding out who I am in my 20's.

                    Most folks on this BB, too, I'd reckon aren't very materialistic. If we were, why would we be spending hand over fist on horses when we could be acquiring the newest gadgets and clothes with that same money?

                    You will want a vacation from your job. Even if you love your job, you will want some personal time. Making an income that will be able to afford you necessities and perhaps more, isn't about affording a fancy new car. It's about being able to pay for what you have and hopefully, maybe, have something left over to put into a rainy day fund. Unforeseen circumstances do happen, and you don't want to be on the brink of being broke when it does. Maybe you get injured and need to take a few weeks off. What's going to pay the bills? Maybe you're driving to work and your vehicle suffers catastrophic failure beyond what mechanical skills you have. Your mechanic gives you a quote for $10,000. You don't have that for the repairs, or a used vehicle, and now you can't get to work. This isn't to say these things are regular occurrences, but they happen.

                    Horses are a motivator for you right now because you choose horses. You, largely, dictate what you do and how much time you spend with them. That may be very different when that power is taken away from you. There will be days you'll be at the barn for 12+ hours, or at shows where you're working almost around the clock. Times where you may be sharing limited accommodations with one or more people you don't really know. Employers with expectations of you, a trainer you need to answer to, and clients who're sometimes going to treat you as lesser than dirt. Once again, this isn't indicative of everyone, but it happens.

                    Lots of good advice above re: becoming a trainer in this thread and the last. Find someone reputable to work for who will help you as much as you help them. If it doesn't work out with that trainer and set up after you've given it a solid try, find a different trainer to work under. Not everyone's personality will mesh well with yours. Have at least one plan B.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Asbury University
                      Wilmore, KY
                      www.asbury.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Management; B.S. Equine Facilitated Therapies
                      Intercollegiate Team: None
                      Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

                      Auburn University
                      Auburn, AL
                      www.auburn.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Animal Science – Equine Science
                      Intercollegiate Team: NCAA Hunt Seat; NCAA Western
                      Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools


                      Averett College
                      Danville, VA
                      www.averett.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equestrian Studies
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IDA Dressage
                      Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

                      Bethany College
                      Bethany, WV
                      www.bethanywv.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Management
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western; IDA Dressage
                      Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

                      California, University of
                      Davis, CA
                      www.ucdavis.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Animal Science and Management
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western; IDA Dressage
                      Accreditation: Western Association of Schools and Colleges

                      California State University
                      Fresno, CA
                      www.csufresno.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Science; M.S. Animal Science; Pre-Vet
                      Intercollegiate Team: NCAA Hunt Seat; NCAA Western
                      Accreditation: Western Association of Schools and Colleges

                      Cazenovia College
                      Cazenovia, NY
                      www.cazenovia.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Business Management
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western; IDA Dressage
                      Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education

                      Centenary College
                      Hackettstown, NJ
                      www.centenarycollege.edu
                      Degree: A.S. Equine Studies; B.S. Communication for the Equine Industry; B.S. Equine Science; B.S. Equine Business Management, B.S. Riding Instruction and Training
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IDA Dressage; ANRC Hunt Seat
                      Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education


                      Clemson University
                      Clemson, SC
                      www.clemson.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Animal Science
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat


                      Colorado State University
                      Fort Collins, CO
                      www.colostate.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Science; M.S. Equine Nutrition; Ph.D. Equine Nutrition
                      Intercollegiate Team: USPA Polo
                      Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

                      Cornell University
                      Ithaca, NY
                      www.cornell.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Animal Science; M.S. Animal Science; Ph.D. Animal Science
                      Intercollegiate: NCAA Hunt Seat; IHSA Hunt Seat
                      Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education


                      Delaware State University
                      Dover, DE
                      www.desu.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Business Management
                      Intercollegiate Team: NCAA Hunt Seat; NCAA Western
                      Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education


                      Delaware Valley College
                      Doylestown, PA
                      www.delval.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Science and Management; Equine Studies
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western; IDA Dressage; ANRC Hunt Seat
                      Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education

                      Findlay, University of
                      Findlay, OH
                      www.findlay.edu
                      Degree: A.A. Equestrian Studies; B.S. Equestrian Studies; B.S. Equine Business Management
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western; ANRC Hunt Seat
                      Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

                      Georgetown College
                      Georgetown, KY
                      www.georgetowncollege.edu
                      Degree: B.S. w/Equine Scholars Program
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat
                      Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools


                      Georgia, University of
                      Athens, GA
                      www.uga.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Animal Science – Equine Science; M.S. Animal Science – Equine Science
                      Intercollegiate Team: NCAA Hunt Seat; NCAA Western; IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western
                      Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools


                      Houghton College
                      Houghton, NY
                      www.houghton.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equestrian Studies
                      Intercollegiate Team: None
                      Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education

                      Johnson & Wales University
                      Providence, RI
                      www.jwu.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Business Management; B.S. Equine Business Management/Riding
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IDA Dressage
                      Accreditation: New England Association of Schools and Colleges

                      Judson College
                      Marion, AL
                      www.judson.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Studies
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western
                      Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools


                      Guelph, University of
                      Guelph, ON
                      www.uoguelph.ca
                      Degree: A.A. Agriculture; B.S. Equine Management
                      Intercollegiate Team: None

                      Kentucky, University of
                      Lexington, KY
                      www.uky.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Science and Management; M.S. Animal Science – Equine Science; Ph.D. Animal Science
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western; IDA Dressage
                      Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools


                      Lake Erie College
                      Painesville, OH
                      www.lec.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Entrepreneurship; B.S. Equine Business & Facility Management; B.S. Equestrian Teacher/Trainer
                      Intercollegiate Teams: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western; IDA Dressage
                      Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

                      Maine, University of
                      Orono, ME
                      www.umaine.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Animal & Veterinary Science; M.S. Animal Science
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat
                      Accreditation: New England Association of Schools and Colleges

                      Maryland, University of
                      College Park, MD
                      www.maryland.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Animal Science - Equine Science
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat
                      Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education


                      Massachusetts, University of
                      Amherst, MA
                      www.umass.edu
                      Degree: A.S. Equine Industries; B.S. Animal Science – Equine Studies; M.S. Animal Biotechnology; Ph.D. Animal Biotechnology
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IDA Dressage; Polo
                      Accreditation: New England Association of Schools and Colleges

                      Midway University
                      Midway, KY
                      www.midway.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Studies
                      Intercollegiate Team: IDA Dressage; IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western
                      Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges

                      Minnesota, University of
                      Crookston, MN
                      www.umn.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Science
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western; NCAA Hunt Seat; NCAA Western
                      Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

                      Montana Western, University of
                      Dillon, MT
                      www.umwestern.edu
                      Degree: A.A.S. Equine Studies; A.A.S. Natural Horsemanship; B.S. Natural Horsemanship; B.S. Business Administration – Equine Management
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western; NIRA Rodeo
                      Accreditation: Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities

                      Morrisville State College
                      Morrisville, NY
                      www.morrisville.edu
                      Degree: B.Tech. Equine Science
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western

                      Mount Ida College
                      Newton, MA
                      www.mountida.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Management
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat
                      Accreditation: New England Association of Schools and Colleges

                      Murray State University
                      Murray, KY
                      www.murraystate.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Animal/Equine Science
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western; NIRA Rodeo; ANRC Hunt Seat
                      Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

                      New Hampshire, University of
                      Durham, NH
                      www.unh.edu
                      Degree: A.A.S. Equine Management; B.S. Equine Industry Management; B.S. Therapeutic Riding; B.S. Equine Science; M.S. Animal Science
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IDA Dressage
                      Accreditation: New England Association of Schools and Colleges

                      North Dakota State University
                      Fargo, ND
                      www.ndsu.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Studies; M.S. Animal Science; Ph.D. Animal Science
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western
                      Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

                      Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College
                      Miami, OK
                      www.neo.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Management; B.S. Equine & Ranch Management
                      Intercollegiate Team: NIRA Rodeo
                      Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

                      Otterbein University
                      Westerville, OH
                      www.otterbein.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Business and Facility Management; B.S. Equine Pre-Vet; B.S. Equine Vet Technology
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IDA Dressage; ANRC Equitation
                      Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

                      Post University
                      Waterbury, CT
                      www.post.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Business Management
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IDA Dressage
                      Accreditation: New England Association of Schools and Colleges

                      Purdue University
                      West Lafayette, IN
                      www.purdue.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Animal Science; M.S. Animal Science; Ph.D. Animal Science
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; ANRC Hunt Seat
                      Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

                      Rocky Mountain College
                      Billings, MT
                      www.rocky.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equestrian Studies
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western
                      Accreditation: Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities

                      Savannah College of Art and Design
                      Savannah, GA
                      www.scad.edu
                      Degree: B.A. Equestrian Studies
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; ANRC Hunt Seat
                      Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

                      St. Andrews Presbyterian College
                      Laurinburg, NC
                      www.sapc.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Science; B.A. Equine Science
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western; IDA Dressage; ANRC Hunt Seat
                      Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

                      St. Mary of the Woods College
                      St. Mary of the Woods, IN
                      www.smwc.edu
                      Degree: A.S. Equine Studies; B.S. Equine Business Management; B.S. Equine Studies; B.S. Equine Training and Instruction
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western
                      Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

                      Stephens College
                      Columbia, MO
                      www.stephens.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equestrian Studies
                      Intercollegiate Team: None
                      Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

                      Sul Ross State University
                      Alpine, TX
                      www.sulross.edu
                      Degree: A.A.S. Farrier Technology; B.S. Equine Science; M.Ag. Animal Science; M.S. Animal Science
                      Intercollegiate Team: NIRA Rodeo
                      Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

                      Texas A&M
                      College Station, TX
                      www.tamu.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Animal Science – Equine Science; M.S. Animal Science; Ph.D. Animal Science
                      Intercollegiate Team: NCAA Hunt Seat; NCAA Western
                      Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

                      Tiffin University
                      Tiffin, OH
                      www.tiffin.edu
                      Degree: B.B.A. Equine Business Management
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western
                      Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

                      Vermont, University of
                      Burlington, VT
                      www.uvm.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Animal Science – Equine Science
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IDA Dressage
                      Accreditation: New England Association of Schools and Colleges

                      Vermont Technical College
                      Randolph, VT
                      www.vtc.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Studies
                      Intercollegiate Team: None
                      Accreditation: New England Association of Schools and Colleges

                      Virginia Intermont College
                      Bristol, VA
                      www.vic.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Studies; B.A. Equine Studies
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IDA Dressage; ANRC Hunt Seat
                      Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

                      Virginia Tech
                      Blacksburg, VA
                      www.apsc.vt.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Animal and Poultry Science - Equine Emphasis
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western; IDA Dressage
                      Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

                      West Texas A&M
                      Canyon, TX
                      www.wtamu.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equine Industry and Business; M.S. Animal Science
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western; NCAA Hunt Seat; NCAA Western
                      Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools


                      William Woods University
                      Fulton, MO
                      www.williamwoods.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equestrian Science; B.S. Equine Administration
                      Intercollegiate Team: None
                      Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

                      Wilmington College
                      Wilmington, OH
                      www.wilmington.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Agriculture - Equine Studies
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western
                      Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

                      Wisconsin, University of
                      River Falls, WI
                      www.uwrf.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Animal Science – Equine Emphasis
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western
                      Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

                      Wilson College
                      Chambersburg, PA
                      www.wilson.edu
                      Degree: B.S. Equestrian Studies; B.S. Equine Facilitated Therapeutics; B.S. Equine Journalism
                      Intercollegiate Team: IHSA Hunt Seat; IHSA Western; IDA Dressage; ANRC Hunt Seat
                      Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education
                      ... _. ._ .._. .._

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        How many horses are you currently working/riding every day? If you want to be a trainer, at 16 years old, you need to start riding horses and mucking stalls, from 5AM to 8PM, with close to zero pay.

                        Find a very good trainer and become his/her apprentice. "Shadowing" is not enough. You need to be an apprentice.

                        If you can't do this for at least a year, forget about becoming a trainer. You aren't tough enough. If you aren't riding multiple horses a day, you don't have enough experience to become a trainer. The good news is, you are young enough to quit if you should decide this is not for you after all.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I agree that you should go to community college and get a 2 year business degree. You can go part time and still work, and it's the most affordable way to get a higher education. If the horse training thing does not work out, you can then finish out a 4 year degree at a 4 year school.

                          You need to narrow your field of interest. The highest paid trainers train race horses. If you are not interested in racing, then you should pick a discipline, as training at the top level of a discipline is the next highest paid training gig. You will have to compete and/or have clients compete and get results.

                          A basic or local trainer will not be able to charge as much. Check around your area to see what the going rate is for various levels of training. Relocation may be an option if there is not much going on where you live.

                          Good luck, hope it all works out for you.
                          "When a true genius appears in the world, you may know him by this sign, that the dunces are all in a confederatcy against him."

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Gloria View Post
                            How many horses are you currently working/riding every day? If you want to be a trainer, at 16 years old, you need to start riding horses and mucking stalls, from 5AM to 8PM, with close to zero pay.

                            Find a very good trainer and become his/her apprentice. "Shadowing" is not enough. You need to be an apprentice.

                            If you can't do this for at least a year, forget about becoming a trainer. You aren't tough enough. If you aren't riding multiple horses a day, you don't have enough experience to become a trainer. The good news is, you are young enough to quit if you should decide this is not for you after all.
                            THIS.

                            The gal where I kept my horse is working on becoming a trainer. She's about 22-23 and has been working for a very knowledgeable, though extremely crusty old b@stard since she was 12. She started mucking stalls & brushing horses, then lunging, on to riding & breaking. His favorite response to any complaint about hours, work, customers, etc, etc, etc, is "You wanted to be a horse trainer."

                            She still isn't ready to go out on her own. She's pretty good, but doesn't have the depth of experience to solve problems all by herself. Probably needs about 4-5 years as an assistant in a big time show barn. She's lacking the experience of big time, tough classes.

                            Visit my Spoonflower shop

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              OP, do NOT get a degree in horse. It will never pay for itself.
                              "When a true genius appears in the world, you may know him by this sign, that the dunces are all in a confederatcy against him."

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by Palm Beach View Post
                                OP, do NOT get a degree in horse. It will never pay for itself.
                                Agreed. Or Vet Tech (everyone I know who has one says it is a huge waste of money, none of them work for vets either). Get a degree or skill in something other than horses so you have a fallback.
                                COTH's official mini-donk enabler

                                "I am all for reaching out, but in some situations it needs to be done with a rolled up news paper." Alagirl

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Continuing on this, I am the same age as OP and in a similar situation. I'm thinking realistically I'll get a Chem. degree because I like it and am pretty good at it, I also have family in the field which would help, and it's a growing field with decent pay. But how does one balance college and horses. But man, the urge to go into the horse world is... soo... strong. I work 8am -7pm with my current trainer as a barn hand and then I usually have a lesson after I get off during the summer, and before that I was a volunteer. I fricken love it. I feel at peace there. I try to convince myself thats its a terrible idea. So I also kinda find myself stuck. Some one bring me to my senses.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by sumastrogirl View Post
                                    Continuing on this, I am the same age as OP and in a similar situation. I'm thinking realistically I'll get a Chem. degree because I like it and am pretty good at it, I also have family in the field which would help, and it's a growing field with decent pay. But how does one balance college and horses. But man, the urge to go into the horse world is... soo... strong. I work 8am -7pm with my current trainer as a barn hand and then I usually have a lesson after I get off during the summer, and before that I was a volunteer. I fricken love it. I feel at peace there. I try to convince myself thats its a terrible idea. So I also kinda find myself stuck. Some one bring me to my senses.
                                    I love horses but I realized early on that I want to afford my own and not take care of other people's while never afford my own. Suck up the 4 years of minimal horses and you will reap the rewards later in life. Your body will thank you as will your retirement account.

                                    If you want to be a trainer you better live, breath, and dream horses and work your fingers to the bone. Work with every horse you get a chance too, go to as many clinics as you can, lesson with everyone no matter the discipline, and remember to never call a clients horse ugly.

                                    My FIL is a chemist and his company will not let him retire. He works in adhesives and coatings and they can't find anyone to replace him. The field is growing by leaps and bounds.
                                    "Anyone who tries to make brownies without butter should be arrested." Ina Garten

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      I'll add this thought for you, sumastrogirl, as well as for the OP.

                                      If horses are a motivator for you and something that you deeply enjoy, you can use that to motivate you elsewhere.

                                      Of course, most anyone would love to get paid to ride all day. But that's really a fraction of what the job of a trainer entails. There's a lot of rank or poorly trained horses, clients with an array of personalities, busting stalls, feeding, administering medication, budgeting, problem solving, heartbreak, the list goes on and on. Think about everything that you would expect out of a trainer. It's a high stress gig, I'd say. People oftentimes expect you to have all, if not most, of the answers. Sometimes you're the sole charge for your barn, sometimes you can hire some help. Regardless, you're still the one responsible at the end of the day. It's still your reputation on the line. One month you'll have a full barn, the next you may have only a couple horses. You may come dead smokin' last at a show with a client's horse, and nevermind how much of yourself you've put into that horse, your client decides to go with someone else.

                                      Or you could be a client. You can choose what horse to ride, rather than having to swing a leg over the newest recruit who's come in because he's got a bucking problem. Maybe you can even own a couple horses you really like. Maybe you can even afford to show and enjoy yourself, even if you don't leave with a ribbon or an award. No sweating about whether or not you're going to lose clients because you didn't win, no stress about how your reputation could have taken a hit. You won't run the risk of getting burnt out or jaded because you come to the barn day in and day out and it's your job. You get to enjoy the barn in your downtime and use it as your escape from the outside world. You may not adore your non-horsey job, but it may mean you can afford a place to live, a well-maintained vehicle, food, clothes, etc, without stretching yourself totally thin. You have savings, maybe even health benefits, paid vacation and sick days, and a pension. You have time to spend with friends, family, your spouse.

                                      Now, don't get me wrong. I'm not saying that professional riders and trainers don't enjoy their job, or that they have no personal time, or anything. But a lot of the folks I know who're trying their hand at becoming pros, don't have a lot of time outside of the barn. It can be very isolating at times, I'm sure.

                                      There's no right answer. As long as amateurs keep buying horses, they'll need professionals to help them with those horses. However, it's up to you to pick what side of the equation you want to be on.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        OP anyone can put up a fb page and advertise as a trainer.

                                        You are asking how you make a decent living as a trainer.

                                        First you need to be very good at your discipline, and the most easily measured way is to have good show scores in your discipline.

                                        So you should be competing in your discipline right now. Lots of other teens are. They will be your competition in a few years. If you don't ride well enough to do that, then who is going to ask you to train their horse?

                                        Second you need a good seat and a lot of courage. You need to feel OK riding problem horses, sitting spook buck and bolt, because that is the kind of horses folks send to trainers. If you have never ridden problem horses go find some.

                                        Third while you say you don't need to and wont indeed make much profit you will have to make a fair bit of money because you will need to maintain your own place, lease or mortgage, and feed the horses under your care. You need a lot of revenue because you will have a lot of expenses.

                                        Fourth you will need to do all your own work so get handy with power tools now.

                                        Finally you can't be a quitter.
                                        You need to realize that there is lots of hard and dull work that goes into any career.

                                        Maybe you will need to spend 3 days clearing brush on your pasture. Maybe you will need to do all your own stalls. Maybe you will need to sit up all night with a colicky horse and then do all these things in the morning on no sleep.

                                        Maybe right now you need to have the self discipline to buckle down and pass your high school courses so that in future you have more options open to you. It doesn't matter if you don't think Latin is useful or you don't blike your history curriculum. They are the tasks in front of you now. You should be putting genuine effort into them.

                                        You need to be able to sustain interest in a project that is not immediately gratifying because it is to your long term benefit.

                                        If you are just sitting here thinking you can avoid school work by day dreaming about being a trainer, as a trainer you are going to sit around the barn daydreaming about how to not do the work in front of you. And yes I've seen trainers do that.

                                        The really important skill is to buckle down and do the job that needs doing now, and that is a transferable skill. In other words if you learn to do a good honest job in one area you know what a good honest job looks like in another area.

                                        Teach yourself how to work by paying yourself to your courses, and bonus, you will have more flexibility when you do want a post secondary degree whatever it is.



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