Most trainers have been around horses since before they were born. Raised with an unending passion and understanding for equines.
I began riding consistently when I was 16, but I always loved horses and began absorbing every drop of information my instructors tossed my way. When I graduated high school, I only had one dream on my mind- a career with horses. My favorite aspect? Training. But, having only ridden consistently for a few years and only assisting a trainer for about a year and a half, how could it happen? I began searching for equine related education to help me grow in my career faster.
Going to college for horse training resulted in my very first horse. A sassy little mare named Miracle. Full of sweetness, spunk, and intelligence, I laid out a challenge for myself. With the help of my lessons, I tried training my Miracle. We hit roadblock after roadblock which resulted in a serious blow to my dreams. I chose to move her to a new boarding facility with a better barn community- a group of individuals who didn’t mind sparing a few minutes to a young equestrian that was grasping at straws.
To all you struggling equestrians out there, don’t give up. Here are a few things I’ve learned.
1) It’s ok to admit you don’t know. What will you ever learn if you act like you know everything? An amazing trainer told me “you can work with horses for a million years, but there will always be something new to learn.”
2) Everyone has advice. Be open to opinions and lessons from others. If their lesson doesn’t work for you and your horse, it’s ok to try something else.
3) You’re going to fail, you’re going to fall, and you’re going to break down. That’s ok. Take a deep breath and learn from your mistakes.
4) Lessons don’t have a time limit. If you’ve taken riding lessons your whole life, you may think you need to work for 30 minutes or an hour. This is simply not true! Train until the lesson is over– this may be 5 minutes or it could be 2 hours. End each lesson on a good note.
I am not an expert and I never will be. But with the help of these lessons I’ve learned from those more experienced, Miracle and I are progressing- learning something new together every day.
Do I regret the time I spent trying to learn on my own? No. I learned something through my failures and frustrations. In our time with the new community, Miracle and I have gotten through our first rides and some small new experiences (such as a party hat on Miracle’s 6th birthday)!
Your greatest enemy is your ego. Don’t be afraid to make a mistake, allow yourself to be corrected, and you never know what you can learn.