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January 20th Issue

January 20th Issue


Danielle Paskowitz
San Clemente, CA

Clinics are great because you get to meet a lot of new people who are interested in the same thing you are. At the recent Reined Cow Horse Benefit Clinic for Grant Berg at Casner’s, it was good because there were several different trainers so you got insight from each one individually — Russell Dilday, Todd Crawford, Don Murphy and Jake Gorrell.

Kim Weyand
Fallbrook, CA

I think the most valuable thing I take away from a clinic is experiencing different perspectives, techniques, and exercises to incorporate into my daily riding routine. There are many wonderful teachers and so much helpful information readily available to us. Everyone should take advantage of the “clinic” opportunity. I like to go gather information from all disciplines and combine it into a program that works best for myself and my horses! By far my most memorable clinic I participated in was taught by Susie Hutchison. To most, she is known as a world-class hunter/jumper rider — but the knowledge she offers is diverse and crosses over into all disciplines. Best of al,l the lessons learned are lasting. It’s been an honor to learn from such a special horsewoman.

Suzi Vlietstra
Chino Hills, CA

The most memorable training clinic I experienced was the Westfall Weekend with Stacy Westfall in Chino Hills last August. Our club, Chino Hills Horsemen’s Association, put the clinic on as a fund-raiser. It was very successful with more than 150 paid auditors, but we learned a lot about scheduling and expectations, and look forward to putting on even better events in the future.

Audrey Pavia
Norco, CA

Training clinics offer so much in a short time, it can sometimes be overwhelming to digest it all. If you can leave the clinic with at least a few pieces of good information you can use, the clinic was definitely worthwhile. My most memorable clinic was a 5-day event featuring the Linda Tellington-Jones TTouch technique. I learned so much at this clinic, the most important of which was to look at things from the horse’s perspective. I have never forgotten that lesson, which has proved to be invaluable.

Barbara Okeefe
Norco, CA

The best thing I have learned came from a Chris Cox clinic. I learned to get the attention and respect from my 14-year-old Arab mare, Sedonna. It seems like such a small thing, but to a horse-owner with an “ADD” Arab, it made all the difference in the world. Its been a couple of years now, and although I have attended other clinics by well-known trainers, it all started with the one Chris Cox clinic. While my mare still has her moments, we have a much better understanding of each other and have the patience and respect of each other to work through it.

Celie Weston
Tujunga, CA

I always believe in learning from as many mentors as possible. You keep an open mind, stay alert and learn new things, so that you have as much knowledge and insight as possible to work with horses and create positive results. One of my favorite clinicians is Clinton Anderson. In my opinion, he is a true teacher that focuses on breaking down techniques and making horse training a simple, step-by-step program. This allows everyone the access to knowledge whether you’re a beginner or a pro. In other words, you don’t need excessive experience or to be able to ride a bronc to succeed. Knowledge takes away a lot of frustration and potential injuries to both horse and human. When I watch a clinician, I only take away the knowledge that makes sense to me. Think for yourself — don’t just be a copy of somebody else’s philosophy.
Make it your own!

Nance Tapley-Peck
Moopark, CA

If you ATTEND a clinic, take notes, video it, buy a video of it, whatever you can do. Set up the same grid, exercise pattern as you saw in the clinic at home and practice from your notes. If you were able to video, watch repeatedly. You will learn and see more, each time you watch it. Ride the course yourself, as if that is you up on the horse, so that it becomes second nature to ride each jump the way it is needed, getting your distance and closing your leg between jumps to move your horse up or hold him as necessary. If you RIDE in a clinic, have someone video you, and watch repeatedly, as if you were a trainer watching you as a student and critiquing your riding. You’ll find you would say the same thing to you as a trainer would, such as sit up straighter, shorten your reins, sit still, release, close your leg a little more before the jump. If you can, take another lesson from the clinician to solidify the experience and fully understand the clinic. Or take a lesson from a trainer that teaches the same way and has the same thought and exercises — perhaps the trainer that held the clinic. Usually, trainers host a clinic for a style of trainer they believe in.

Miki Cohen
Cameron Park, CA

Pat Wyse was the most memorable clinic I ever attended. It was five days, and there were about 12 of us. The group was divided into three groups by skill. I was in the middle, of course. The camaraderie with the other riders, even though we were from all walks of horse life, was amazing. The focus without interruption was intense. The knowledge, fun, friendships and confidence was a life-long experience. I also learned for myself and for my business that ALL of us have the same thing in common:safety, a horse with manners, soundness and training, whatever the sport whatever the breed.

Brooke Flagtwet
Perris, CA

I am not a follower of anyone yet. I take what I can and incorporate it into my program. Monty Roberts helped us develop our own idea on “join-up.” Clinton Anderson gave us new ideas on teaching a problem horse to love the trailer. Dana Hokana taught us new ways to develop and strengthen our western pleasure horses and create the ultimate front leg on them. Carol Dalporto helped me realize the perfection that comes with showmanship. Bob Avila helped me understand the mechanics of a sliding stop. Mark Shaffer taught me how to train a horse to lope like the world champion they are destined to be. To say only one was memorable would be a hard decision. Carol Dalporto and Mark Shaffer offered professionalism and insight that I don’t believe any other could offer. The wealth of information they have shared and shown me has allowed me to become a better horsewoman with knowledge that I will never forget.

Kathy Aparicio
Norco, CA

I think the biggest thing I take away is the exercises they send you home with. It’s great to have exercises to keep your horse working correctly. I also like the feeling of riding my horse for two or three days straight and getting fed all that information and encouragement. It’s interesting how training methods differ so much from trainer to trainer. The end result is the same, but the path there can be much different. I think that is why I enjoy clinics. Since we all learn differently, it makes sense that one program or procedure would work better for different individuals. Sometimes in a clinic situation, I have a revelation and it is something I had heard from a trainer several times — it was just presented differently.

Tanna Dilday
Porterville, CA

Voices in your head! Don Murphy usually says something you hear over and over when you have left the clinic — and it works! Its a great opportunity to go and get help from someone who can give you just a few pointers that really turn everything around for you. Its always great to sit and watch other riders because somewhere down the road you’ll find yourself in a similar position and you can fix it!

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