What You Would Say on Your Blog! – Part II

What You Would Say on Your Blog! – Part II

Here we go with round two of my anonymous “What would you say on your blog?” survey…

Lots of people had talk about their trainers and training.

It’s okay to have multiple trainers! No one person has all of the answers for you OR your horse. I love my trainer dearly, but she has shortcomings.

Sometimes I want to talk about my desire to find a new trainer, but I cant… because my trainer reads my blog!!!

Dear Trainer: I find it really sad you don’t know who Bernie Traurig is. And only barely know who Denny Emerson is. As an event trainer, you might want to find out who these people are.

That the assistant trainer at my barn rides like a sack of potatoes and if she asks ONE more time to jump my 4 yo greenie I WILL SCREAM


I wish I could complain about trainer/other student issues. I also wish I could talk about controversial topics such as the nincompoops in every discipline.

90% of training problems are either uneducated riding or having way too much horse. Instead of blaming turnout, tack fit, ULCERS (why is is always ulcers?), or some form of body work, take a long, hard look at your actual ability as a rider, your willingness/financial ability to work with a trainer and the hard logistics of whether your horse is actually right for you. Hanging on to the wrong horse is straight up idiotic as well as dangerous.

Hey those of you who call yourselves a horse trainer or instructor – YOU work for ME!! What makes you think you can manipulate me, insult me, charge me up the ass to NOT coach me at a show, and then expect me to keep paying you money?!? YOU ARE FIRED.

i would love to express/process my frustrations with the trainer/student interaction.

If I could say anything on my blog without repercussions I’d call out my old barn and trainer. I got really burned, and I’d love to put her and her program on blast!

I occasionally wish I could brag about my trainer – not in a “she’s awesome!” way, because she is, and I can do that anonymously. But I happen to have landed in a barn with a seriously BNT, like internationally recognized, tons of people would read my blog to hear about lessons with her. But I feel awkward saying her actual name for privacy reasons – not really my own, but hers! It’s kind of awkward.


Tack is always a hot issue.

If you are trying a zillion different bits and bitless bridles on your green or greenish horse, your horse probably just isn’t broke to the bit yet. Seek the help of a professional and/or consider whether you’re over mounted.

I hate seeing people riding horses they clearly can’t handle and don’t like. No equipment is going to fix having the wrong horse.

If you think your problem is saddle fit, you probably just can’t ride…

It makes me absolutely crazy when people are constantly trying to find the magic fix through equipment. Yes, some things are going to work better than others, but there is not a single bit in this world that is going to give a horse a good foundation. I wish people would stop spending so much time (not to mention money) looking for the quick fix and put some effort into finding the actual core of the problem! I know that the thought of something miraculously fixing all of our problems is appealing, but more likely than not it doesn’t exist and reading about one failed product after another gets really old.

You don’t need that many bridles.  You just don’t.

Stop riding in draw reins.


Sorry in advance eventing crowd…

I hate that eventers always catch their horses’ in the mouth over stadium jumps. It’s called a RELEASE people!!

While I don’t hate eventing, I hate how eventers treat me.  You brag about being the most fun and amazing group of horseman in the world, but I have never met a more elitist and superior group.

Lower level eventing scares me because the riding is often so bad.  Upper level eventing scares me because horses and riders keep dying.


Hunters didn’t totally escape either though…

I don’t agree with drugging horses and I don’t want to drug my horse, but when I pay a lot of money and I KNOW he’s going to lose because he’s a little fresh I have a hard time saying “no” when me and my trainer know for a fact the three biggest huner/jumper show barns in our area drug frequently and heftily.

I think hunters ride like shit.

I’m a H/J rider and I was sickened to see a BNT using drugs at a show, but I didn’t know what to do about it. I’m afraid of retaliation.


What are your responses after today’s round of secret confessions and rants?


43 thoughts on “What You Would Say on Your Blog! – Part II

  1. Eventers unite! ahha seriously though…I have to comment. People suck at riding in all disciplines, not just eventing.

    That is too bad that one person has not been treated well by eventers, that is not the case in Ontario but there is definitely an elite clicquey side in some areas.

    I agree with the bits/bridles…sometimes a change is needed, sometimes its just crap riding.

    1. I definitely agree that all disciplines of riding have shitty riders and big problems. The blog-o-sphere seems to be mostly polarized to h/j and eventing, which makes the comments I got make sense.

  2. Ditto all of the above.

    I think that proper equipment is important but ultimately buying things won’t solve problems. I buy nice things bc I like nice things… And options… I myself have been guilty of the bit experiments but I would say they served me well in he end as I know what my horse likes and doesn’t like very well.

    The saddle fit one is kind of absurd but everyone has their own opinions.

    Way more hostility than I expected and also interesting to see you’re not the only one thinking some things.

    1. Yeah, saddle fit is really damn important. Now if you’re only changing saddles and not taking lessons it’s a problem… but really it’s an important part of horsemanship that shouldn’t be overlooked in my opinion.

  3. This is totally 100% off topic but I am sort of mesmerized by the butt wrinkles on the horse in your last picture. Streeeeeeetch!

    Also, I am still surprised by the people who vented! I didn’t really feel the need to do any of that? I’d happily just say it on my blog if I felt that way. It seems like some of these are comments that people wish they could leave on other people’s blogs, not necessarily write on their own.

  4. I’m actually glad you’re doing this, because it’s good to get some things off your chest sometimes. It’s unfortunate that the only “safe” way for us to say some of these things is anonymously, but that’s better than nothing. I’m sure some folks are/will be offended by the comments, but hopefully some folks might actually reflect on them as well.

    1. I think we could all feel safer getting things off our chest if we took a deep breathe and expressed things in a polite manner (like your comment). Unfortunately, and I am guilty of this as well, it’s often easier to just leave the snark and suffer consequences that may follow.

  5. You may want to consider taking down the responses about other bloggers. Some of them are easily identifiable to someone who’s been reading these blogs a long time. At best, this will cause mistrust between the members of the blogging community, and at worst, people will identify themselves in the responses and feel bullied. I feel bad for them.

    Wholly my opinion, but the whole thing just doesn’t sit well with me, which is why I didn’t participate.

  6. I’m a hunter and I do sometimes ride like shit. And I’m not afraid to say it, haha!

    Also, I totally agree with the bridles comment… even though I am totally “that girl” with waaay too many bridles!

  7. IMO, until that person has to ride/deal with that particular horse, they have no right to judge the owner on what equipment they choose to use, or even how they go about deciding on that equipment. I have no qualms with people trying out a multitude of bits (as I am one of them) because ultimately I realize that that individual is just trying to figure out what works best for them and the horse. It’s not always a training issue. Not every horse is happy/can be ridden in a snaffle. And I fully believe that even the top riders take time to experiment with bits to find what works best for their horses. Even Stuart Tinney (Olympic gold medalist) mentions in the book I reviewed how deciding on a bit can be a difficult process, especially for XC, because the only way to test a bit is to take a horse on a XC course because it is hard to emulate that kind of feeling just schooling/in the arena.

    Sorry for the rant, but the lack of understanding a lot of people have towards those of us who struggle with trying to figure out what works best for us and the horse just flabbergasts me.

    1. ^ This. Yes. Exactly. And I also want to add that I strongly disagree with the comment on saddle fit. Shitty riding or not, the saddle MUST fit the horse.

  8. first, i want to say: amen, @hawk.
    second, as an eventer, i think the eventing commenters make good points. of course, i agree, as well, that the same can/does hold true in all disciplines.
    third, it’s really nice to know i’m not alone in some of my own feelings/frustrations. thanks for allowing me access to that feeling through your poll.

  9. Man people got passionate! I didn’t realize the direction these were going to go- guess its good I didn’t submit anything ha!

    Tho it is very interesting reading all these 🙂

  10. Double amen Hawk. Sadly, I’m sensing a distinct lack of compassion (and plenty of judgment) in many of the confessions / rants…
    First, a lack of compassion toward the horses, because eliminating ill fitting / uncomfortable tack as a possible issue just makes good sense. (not talking about owning ten bridles in order to show off poopsie woopsie’s pretty head better) And I think we’d all agree that improving riding skills will benefit our horses, but often there’s more to the story.
    Then there’s a lack of compassion toward other riders. Not everyone out there (here) can afford or even find consistent instruction. Or the best equipment. Or made horses. So we struggle on and do the best we can, hopefully keeping a happy, healthy horse as our first priority.
    I guess I value (and admire) horsemanship over competitive achievements, though it’s pretty obvious that the bloggers I follow, who are successfully competing, do make their horses’ well being a priority.

  11. The whole BNT thing is interesting to me. I have, of course, started taking a few lessons with a BNT. And been completely honest about it! I can’t afford to take lessons regularly, so the lessons I can take are a big deal for me and I like to share what I learned with everyone (but primarily I blog about it to remind myself later). These comments make me wonder, how are those posts being perceived? Does it translate as name dropping? Do people judge me because I am only a mediocre rider taking lessons from a BNT? Interesting…

    1. Hmm, I don’t think so. I don’t like to state who I train with regardless if it’s a BNT or not, but that’s because this blog is about ME and I’m not trying to drag too many others into it.

    2. I ride with a BNT too and am sort of guilty of name dropping without actually dropping the name but I am just so *damn excited and grateful for the opportunity* that I honestly can’t help myself. Plus realistically what my BNT does and their experiences become a significant part of my life because I more or less live at the barn. So idk. My perspective I guess. I am at best a semi decent amateur and really have no business riding with someone like this and wonder if I get judged for it. Sigh.

      1. I do not judge you even a little bit Irene, I’m uber-jealous! I think it’s awesome and I love reading what new nugget zee trahner has to say 😉

  12. Interesting – I kind of figured there would be responses like this and some of them I kind of have to agree with. The draw rein comment, the “too many bridles” comment and the “magic tack” comment are all ones I agree with.

  13. there’s a lot of stuff here! a great opportunity for folks to vent too, apparently lol.

    the theme i see is: people have an issue with riders seemingly searching high and low for the ‘magic fix,’ without actually doing any self-analysis.

    but i kinda doubt the reality behind that sentiment. i know WAY too many riders who are constantly questioning and doubting and blaming themselves for training issues or hiccups to think that the blogging community is somehow devoid of introspection. maybe some bloggers just don’t want to out themselves like that? or are embarrassed? so they write about the tools and tricks they used instead of saying – yea i sucked but then i got help and it was better? just a thought… (and major kudos to the bloggers out there who are so open and honest about their own perceived shortcomings – that takes guts to post about!)

    1. I too agree that most riders do more internal debating than they may blog about. People may be quick to judge if they skim a post or don’t know the history of the blogger, because all the reader sees is someone trying X as a “quick fix”.

  14. Haha, very entertaining. I actually think that if most of the above topics were stated tactfully, they would make really great blog posts. Obviously, I wouldn’t want to read pure snark with names attached (grow some class), but the tack fit/trainer issues/discipline stereotyping is excellent fodder.

  15. Sometimes it seems like we want nothing more than to judge people. I say that with the full knowledge that I have been just as guilty as anyone else. Reading these makes me think that I really just wish we all would have more grace and manners!

    I once heard a sermon about how we can be 100% right but still get it wrong simply because of our approach. I think that is doubly true behind the keyboard!

  16. I’ve seen people use all kinds of excuses of why this doesn’t work or that doesn’t work and blame everything from saddle fit to bit. When the reality is they are out faced, lost their confidence or haven’t taken a riding lesson in 20 years. I see this in barns though not in the blog world. On a blog we only see what people want is to see and people lie at worst and creatively self edit at best. So you take the blog(s) at face value and try to enjoy um. 🙂

    As to the BNT, theres one at my barn and though i’m friendly with her i don’t ride with her because we wouldn’t be a good match. I stay with my not such a BNT who i am a good fit with and who gets me, my goals and my horses. I’m not all about winning event/shows so i wouldn’t help the BNT in her ends and she wouldn’t help me in mine.

  17. The hunter/jumper responses are a bit scary. Are drugs at shows really that common or that much of a problem? Pretty said that a rider would feel too scared of retaliation to stand up for the rights of a horse. Horses can’t stand up for themselves!

    Also, glad that I finally found a good trainer!

  18. Those are some strongly worded comments. When writing on the Internet, one definitely has to be careful about name-dropping, but I think there are creative ways to get your point across without resorting to slander. If you want to brag, then just ask permission of your trainer. He or she might like the free endorsement.

    I am far removed from the Hunter ring, but if there is any truth to the use of drugs to make horses appear calm or more broke, then color me disgusted.

    I love dressage, but I suspect this discipline is not off the hook just yet.

  19. Juicy! I agree with many others that the saddle fit comment is slightly ridiculous. Saddle fit is a little too important to dismiss like that. And also, I do need all the bridles!! lol. Just like I need to own a horse. And I need sparkly everything.

    This definitely makes for interesting reading.

  20. I thought the comments on the bits were I interesting. I’m just a boring dressage rider and am always going to go with the simpler, the better. That being said I can see the need for certain bits in jumping and eventing. However, I also think that if you can’t get your horse to flat well in a simpler bit, and especially in a more specialized one, then there probably is an underlying problem with a gap in the basics (am I going to get murdered for saying this?). It’s also not my horse and not my problem so people can do whatever they want. I also think that it’s easy to get defensive reading these comments, but it may not hurt for people to think about if there might be something behind them. No, I’m not referring to the comments about eventers being snobby or hunters not being able to ride, those types of situations happen in every discipline and are certainly not limited to any specific one. The saddle fit comment is interesting. The rider aside, saddle fit is so important for the horse. I’ve seen a lot of people blame their riding on saddle fit, sometimes it’s the case, sometimes not. I do know that it is a real bitch to have to ride in an ill-fitted and/or uncomfortable saddle.

  21. Hey there, I’m new around here! Been reading for a it, but first time commenting! I’m just finding these survey results completely fascinating, whether I agree with them or not. Not brave enough to chime in lol.

  22. Wow. There’s some serious negativity in these posts. There is a kernel of truth to some of the posts. I do object to the posts about saddle fit, finding the right bit for a youngster, and ulcers. If we are going to expect our horses to pack us around we owe or to them to have a proper fitting saddle. As far as bits I have a youngster and I had to try a few things before I found one he likes. Every horse’s mouth conformation is different and the skull continues to grow until they are six. As far as eventers being elitist that makes me sad. One of the reasons I am drawn to eventing is because they are so welcoming. You can win on your mutt horse that came from a slaughter pen. Every barn I go to I end up being drawn to the Eventer or ex Eventer crowd even when I don’t realize their background. Riders in general need to be more welcoming. The next time we get to the barn we should smile at a person we don’t know and tell them to have a good ride.

  23. Wow, see, this is when I see how my brain does not work like other people’s, LOL! Those types of issues or answers did not even OCCUR to me when you asked the question. 0.0

    I do agree with SB on her first point though — as I was reading through, I thought almost all would actually make great blog posts if fleshed out & researched. There are so many assumptions and misinformation and skewed perceptions out there, the educator in me would love to write ALL THE THINGZ!

    Too bad it takes me like 5 hours to put a post together. Although I don’t see why the state can’t just send me a paycheck while I blog and work on the farm. But nooooo, data data fish data data, they are so demanding……

  24. God I love these anonymous comment posts. As a non horse-person, it’s like watching “Real Housewives of Orange County” meets “crazy horse people with access to the internet”. I’m going to print this out the next time someone shoots down one of my pitches for a reality show about a barn.

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