Training/Buying
April 2020 - Blackjack Farm
Written by CRM
Tuesday, 31 March 2020 23:25
PDF Print E-mail

training

Hunter/jumper program caters to adults and their unique learning preferences.

Loving horses aside, adults are at the barn for very different reasons than their junior counterparts. At Blackjack Farm in San Diego County’s Vista, they specialize in catering to just those reasons.  

The most prominent characteristic for adult learners is that they are internally motivated. That means they are doing something because of their own values or interests. They simply enjoy an activity or see it as an opportunity to explore, learn and actualize their own potential.  

 


When Blackjack Farm owner Robin Martinez came back to riding as an adult, she was about 30 years old, ready to buy a horse and start competing again. She was certainly internally motivated.

 

But right off the bat, her experience back in the horse world wasn’t very good. She didn’t feel like she fit in a group lesson with a bunch of teenagers and private lessons were few and far between. As an adult, working in a corporate structure for years at that point, the communication style she was accustomed to was a 180-degree change from what she experienced at the stable. Direction was given as an order rather than an explanation, with the most common direction being the phrase, “Do it again!” It seemed to her that the focus was much more on style than on substance and the communication methods left a lot to be desired.   

Robin knew from her own experience as a corporate trainer/facilitator that teaching adults is about a partnership between the student and the instructor. Adults learn much differently than their younger counterparts and therefore must be taught differently. Adults need to understand the why of things and how ideas fit together. This characteristic drives many trainers crazy, but this is who adults are and how they learn. “I know this is how I wanted to be taught when I was the client and it’s exactly how I teach now,” says Robin.

Robin and Dionicio Martinez.

“It has been my experience that the American method of teaching is focused mostly on replicating a style rather than on principles that lead to a consistently reproducible outcome of an effective rider and a rideable horse,” says Robin. “This lack of a system in teaching jumping riders is problematic in general but especially problematic for adult learners. I really believe it is the cause of so many adult amateur riders finding themselves frustrated and without any real progress to their riding. It’s what stood in my way as a horsewoman and a rider. It was the basis of my frustration that eventually inspired me to do things differently.”

Robin’s teaching style is one of well thought-out communication, with the goal always being that the rider understands the theory behind what they are learning. After 20 years of experience with adult learners, Robin knows that you can’t just say “do it again” and expect that the person is going to learn something that will affect lasting change or improvement.  

At Blackjack Farm, horsemanship comes first, and the principals of riding are an integral part of that. “To me, good riding is a part of good horsemanship. It’s not a separate thing. Learning the foundational flatwork that is the basis of how all horses are taught, mastering how to put the horse on the bit, understanding proper use of the horse’s body and the rider’s position, really understanding the aids and what you are actually saying to the horse with each thing you do, these are essential parts of good horsemanship.”

Blackjack Farm at sunset.

The focus at Blackjack is on teaching adult amateurs and young people who want to be in a more adult atmosphere. Full and half training programs are available as well as in-barn lease options. Robin teaches out of her beautiful North County facility that she owns and manages with her husband Dionicio Martinez. Together, they eat, sleep and breathe horses. Life is full and the future is bright.  

The vibe at the five-acre facility is “peaceful, productive and positive,” and the training emphasis is jumpers and adult amateur riders. Blackjack Farm has a 12-stall barn, nine oversized in-and-out stalls, premiere all-weather footing, show quality jumps, large turn-outs, a groomed track and a Eurociser.

For more information on Blackjack Farm please visit www.blackjackfarmsandiego.com.

 
December 2019 - Learning To Fall
Written by by Kim F. Miller
Sunday, 01 December 2019 08:36
PDF Print E-mail

toc training

Minimizing injury risks is the focus of four Landsafe Equestrian clinics in California this month.

by Kim F. Miller

Nobody doubts that riding is a physically dangerous sport, but there is disagreement over what can be done to reduce risks. Some accept the risks and carry on and some accept the risks and do everything possible to minimize injuries when the inevitable falls or necessary sudden dismounts occur.


The three-year-old program Landsafe Equestrian is firmly in that latter camp. Staging four clinics in California this month, during a larger West Coast tour, the program was created by riders Danny and Keli Warrington. It is steadily growing the ranks of proactive riders intent on improving their odds of walking away from potentially terrible falls without devastating injuries.

The core of the two-day clinics are gymnastic exercises and work on a mechanical horse programmed to dislodge riders in a realistic simulation of the speed and impact of a real fall.

The first day starts with two hours of gymnastics skill building. The emphasis is on rolling safely and with a body shape most able to protect the head and neck and to decelerate the impact. Later that day, these new skills are transferred to the mechanical horse. The second day revisits those skills, then spends more time on the simulator working with various of types of falls and dangerous situations: like the right way to roll off and away from the horse in a rotational fall and developing the instincts for when to eject from the saddle when a horse rears.

In all phases, the goal is building muscle memory, body awareness and control and the rider’s confidence in activating the training in the heat of what Danny calls the “Oh crap!” moment. “It’s a training program designed to teach the best practices of fall prevention and response,” he explains.

Danny is a former steeplechase rider turned FEI level eventer. His first wife, Amanda Warrington, died of injuries sustained during a 4* competition in 1998. He has since been a strong voice for riders taking personal responsibility for “playing the sport safely,” as he wrote in a moving 2008 Chronicle of the Horse article. Keli has an extensive background as a gymnast.

A

s horsemen, both are eventers, and that’s the discipline that first embraced this still-new Landsafe Equestrian program. In 2018, the United States Eventing Association offered members a grant-funded discount on the cost of participating in the clinics. With its cross-country phase in which horses and riders gallop over permanent obstacles, eventing has been in the rider (and horse) safety spotlight for many years so its embrace of Landsafe is not surprising. More recently, the United States Hunter Jumper Association reached out to Landsafe, Danny reports. The training will be incorporated into USHJA educational programs in the fall of 2020, he says.

No need to wait until a governing body formally adopts the program, Danny stresses. Some professionals make Landsafe participation a prerequisite of joining their training program. Danny hopes the safety training will become as ubiquitous in equestrian sports as it is in many mainstream sports.  Gymnasts, he notes, learn to fall safely and avoid their sport’s most common injuries in their earliest phases of participation.

Any riding style has its risks, and Landsafe seeks to reduce those across all disciplines. Rotational falls in which the horse hits a jump between its knees and chest, causing the horse to flip over the jump, are the most dangerous. “The risk of having a serious injury is once every 55 falls,” Landsafe reports. “A rotational fall, however, increases the risk to once every five falls.”

Even as the Landsafe clinics fill to capacity, skepticism persists. The biggest doubts concern any program’s ability to train the mind and body to respond in the split-second moment of a potential or actual fall and how much can be accomplished in a two-day session. In what little time he has for such doubters, Danny begins by stating that any form of training is better than none. Landsafe’s two days of core-building somersaults, vaults and controlled falls off the simulator do build muscle memory, he asserts. Repeating the course annually or with some regularity is ideal. Adopting or continuing an active, play-oriented lifestyle is a big help in maintaining the strength and body control lessons learned in the clinic. Activities that increase hand-eye coordination are also valuable.

Part of the Landsafe education is countering myths, like the idea that it’s best to relax the muscles in a fall. “What we are teaching is body shaping as it applies to decelerating the force of impact when hitting the ground,” he explains. “This is rider education regarding falling safely. It teaches riders not only a better way to navigate a fall, but also using these skills, in many cases, may reduce chances of injury or prevent a fall all together.”

Danny feels the training is perhaps even more needed now than in the past because many young people spend more time in safe, sedentary activities than in rough and tumble outdoor play of earlier times.  Such physical activity contributes to body awareness, balance and strength that are critical to the muscle memory reactions Landsafe emphasizes. Participants of all ages and auditors will benefit from the clinic, Danny asserts. Even though an older rider might not be so swift with the somersaults, they can still learn skills to minimize the risk of severe injury in a fall.

He equates Landsafe to seatbelts and child safety seats when they were first introduced. “Your kids won’t want to do them, but you’ve got to get them into them.” He expects that acceptance will eventually follow the same trajectory as those everyday safety precautions.

February 2020 will mark Landsafe’s third year of giving clinics. “I can’t believe this isn’t mandatory,” is one of the most common participant comments, Danny relays.

For the contact information on each clinic, visit www.landsafeequestrian.com.

 


Landsafe Equestrian Clinics this month in California

 

  • Dec. 7-8 at Kingsview Equestrian Center in the Sacramento area’s Woodland.
  • Dec. 15-16 at Red Fox Farm in the South Bay Area’s Gilroy
  • Dec. 22-23 at Shea Therapeutic Riding Center in San Juan Capistrano
  • Dec. 28-29 in Twin Rivers Ranch in Central California’s Paso Robles. Eventing star Buck Davidson, Jr., is partnering in this clinic with cross-country jumping coaching. He’s a longtime friend of Danny Warrington and was one of the first international riders to instantly understand and promote Landsafe’s benefits, Danny explains.
 
August 2019 - Can Your Horse Handle the Vet?
Written by by Katharine V. Mertens, DVM
Friday, 02 August 2019 01:49
PDF Print E-mail

training

Horses can be trained to cooperate with veterinary care.

by Katharine V. Mertens, DVM

Think of all the things horses learn to do for us: they pull, carry, jump, spin, slide, in a variety of gaits over all types of terrain. They are able to do these things willingly because they understand the job at hand.

In contrast, few domestic horses understand the “job” of being a veterinary patient. Veterinarians, and owners, may not realize how easy it could be to teach them.

 
December 2018 - Getting Started in Working Equitation
Written by by Nicole Chastain Price with Kip Mistral
Friday, 30 November 2018 02:13
PDF Print E-mail

training

Have some serious fun!

by Nicole Chastain Price with Kip Mistral

I  am often asked how a rider new to working equitation can get started, and I have several suggestions for people just beginning to explore the sport to see if it might be right for their horses and themselves.

As a first step, I would suggest that riders interested in learning more about and getting started in working equitation should consult one of the websites of our two governing bodies in the United States, which are WE United and The Confederation for Working Equitation. There you can read about the history of the sport, its definition and the requirements. We offer multiple levels in working equitation: Children, Introductory, Novice A, Novice B, Intermediate A, Intermediate B, Advanced and Masters. We also have multiple phases: Dressage, Ease of Handling (How well you do the Obstacles), Speed (Obstacles at Speed) and a Team Cattle Phase. The Introductory level does not include a Speed Phase. At this stage in the U.S., the cattle phase is not usually offered, and if it is it is an optional phase.

 
December 2018 - Mette Rosencrantz Returns to San Diego
Written by CRM
Friday, 30 November 2018 00:31
PDF Print E-mail

training

Accomplished dressage trainer brings her program to Arroyo Del Mar.

When Mette Rosencrantz got the call from Steffen Peters about the opportunity to relocate her business from Los Angeles back to San Diego’s beautiful Arroyo Del Mar, she
didn’t hesitate to make the change. She has been working at Equinox Equestrian Center owned by Karen Izzi-Bristing but she needed more room for her expanding business.

She came to work at Helena Polanitza’s Seabreeze in San Diego in the early 80s and getting to move back to San Diego will be like coming home. Arroyo Del Mar is the home base for Steffen and Shannon Peters training business and they also are the management team for the elite 22-acre dressage training facility that is home to several dressage trainers.

 
December 2018 - Sylvia Zerbini Clinic
Written by by Linda Holst
Thursday, 29 November 2018 23:44
PDF Print E-mail

training

Cavalia Odysseo star shares liberty work strategies with everyday horse owners.

by Linda Holst

There is a distinct romance that is displayed by Cavalia’s Odysseo star Sylvia Zerbini and her “equine guys” (16 striking Arabian stallions and geldings), during their Grand Liberte performances throughout North America, Europe and Australia. Each horse performs their part of the synchronized dance in proper sequence at liberty, coordinating their movements with the other horses under Sylvia’s ballet like direction. Everyone who sees her is mesmerized as she moves with the posture of a dancer and years of finely tuned skills that have been mastered to create this beautiful equine orchestra.

 
August 2018 - Growing San Diego Program
Written by CRM
Friday, 27 July 2018 03:29
PDF Print E-mail

training

Carmel Creek Ranch welcomes Sarah Dowling & Stepping Out Stables

With her “build it and they will come” attitude, hunter/jumper trainer Sarah Dowling leapt at the chance to expand her growing business to San Diego County’s Carmel Creek Ranch. Sarah’s business, Stepping Out Stables, has a booming riding school at Poway Equestrian Center and now looks forward to building an additional hunter/jumper team at the Carmel Creek Ranch location. Sarah had previously worked as an assistant trainer at Foxlair West, previously located just a short drive down 56 at Seabreeze Farms, where she grew her 2015 riding school from just one student to 36 in less than a year with a number of them competing in local shows and the GSDHJA Championship Show.

 
May 2018 - Hidden Fox Farm Welcomes New Faces
Written by CRM
Sunday, 29 April 2018 17:25
PDF Print E-mail

training

Haley Morrissey brings a new dimension to established San Diego program.

photos: Erpelding Photography

Founded by Mike & Katy Boswell in 1999, Hidden Fox Farm is a family-oriented hunter-jumper barn tucked down in the oak trees of the Crest community in East County, San Diego. Katy has been a fixture of the San Diego horse community for decades, gaining her proverbial spurs working at Blackland Farm with Sally Black, founding the ECHO horse show series, and developing competent horse people who’ve gone on to success at every level of riding.  As a new year gets fully underway, Katy and the team at Hidden Fox Farm are excited to introduce a new Assistant Trainer, Haley Morrissey, a well-rounded equestrian professional with experience in many facets of the horse world.

 
April 2018 - Cherry Hill Farm & Jamie Lund
Written by CRM
Tuesday, 27 March 2018 19:55
PDF Print E-mail

training

Showing the love in every lesson and every ride.

"Um, she agrees with me about politics?” Carrie White-Parrish jokes, earning a laugh from the rest of the crew, as if this is a common line. As if they’re all part of the same gang, and already knew it would be her answer. Then she sobers. “Oh, you mean why do I love her as a trainer?”

 

 
April 2018 - Sandhu Stables
Written by by Kim F. Miller
Tuesday, 27 March 2018 19:51
PDF Print E-mail

training

Revived Bay Area stable sets spirits soaring.

by Kim F. Miller

Aman Sandhu enjoyed horses and riding as a boarding school student in his native India. He left them behind when his family immigrated to the United States during his teens. In May of last year, a long-held dream of returning horses to his life came full circle in the purchase of 30 acres in the East Bay Area. Simultaneously, Aman revived a boarding and training facility that had been dormant for 15 years and at risk of development in the residential sprawl that’s overtaken much of Contra Costa County’s Tassajara Valley.

 
February 2018 - On The Move
Written by CRM
Wednesday, 31 January 2018 21:04
PDF Print E-mail

training

Amber Smigel relocates to Trails End Ranch in Orange County.

With reining trainer Dallas Wedel moving his business to San Diego County, the opening at Trails End Ranch was perfect for dressage trainer Amber Smigel to move her growing training business. She was already familiar with Trails End Ranch, as her retired dressage horse PopGunn happily lived out his retirement years at Jo Ann Kass’ beautiful Orange County equestrian facility.

 
February 2018 - Mark Leone Clinic
Written by by Karine Brooks
Wednesday, 31 January 2018 20:59
PDF Print E-mail

training

Adjustability lessons are a take-away of SAHJA session with top horseman.

by Karine Brooks

Every year the Sacramento Area Hunter Jumper Association offers an educational clinic to its members. This year, the clinic took place at the beautiful Starr Vaughn Equestrian in Elk Grove and was free to 36 lucky SAHJA members, with the help of fundraising and an educational grant from the USA Equestrian Trust.

 

 
January 2018 - Blackjack Farm
Written by CRM
Wednesday, 27 December 2017 01:26
PDF Print E-mail

training

A horse and rider oasis in North San Diego County.

Robin and Dionicio Martinez bought their beautiful horse facility as their own private ranch in North San Diego County in 2011. Robin was competing successfully as an amateur and Dionicio, with no previous horse experience before meeting and marrying Robin, was finding out just what the life of a fulltime horseman was all about. Having left her corporate job a few years previously, Robin was looking to refocus her life in a way that allowed her to put her passions first.  With Dionicio at her side, she felt that this was the opportunity to really go all in with horses.

 
December 2017 - Off To A Good Start
Written by CRM
Thursday, 30 November 2017 23:46
PDF Print E-mail

training

Doing things right in the formative years can set horses on road to success.

As a business that specializes in training young horses from the ages of 4 and under, I see consistencies come to the forefront that I would like to share with owners and breeders that your trainer and your horse would appreciate. Much can be done in the formative years to set a horse’s career up for success and create a positive experience!   

 
December 2017 - Willowbrook Riding Club & Equestrian Center
Written by CRM
Thursday, 30 November 2017 23:44
PDF Print E-mail

training

Multi-faceted Palm Springs facility is the perfect place for horses to retire and people to ride, show, shop or relax on trail.

Yes, horses need to retire too, and what better place to do it than in a retirement Mecca on the grass in the Palm Springs area? The 40 acres of Willowbrook Riding Club and Equestrian Center are surrounded by open spaces with gentle hills off in the distance: horses like it here. The weather is some of the best on the planet -- most sunny days, 5.25” average annual rainfall, no snow. There’s an international airport in Palm Springs and the I 10 Freeway is 10 minutes away. It’s a wonderful place for a horse to relax and enjoy a well-deserved retirement in one of our private pasture suites.

 
November, 2017 - NorCal Spotlight: Shady Lane Farm, LLC
Written by Kim F. Miller
Monday, 30 October 2017 21:06
PDF Print E-mail

training

Matt and Lindsay Archer’s small program makes a big impact on its horses, riders and the sport.

by Kim F. Miller

Matt and Lindsay Archer have a uniquely balanced approach to their hunter/jumper training and sales program, Shady Lane Farm, LLC. Their clientele ranges from a backer of their Grand Prix goals to an amateur equitation and hunter rider who was one of Lindsay’s first students 15 years ago.

 
August 2017 - New Owner, Same Great Deals
Written by CRM
Saturday, 29 July 2017 19:48
PDF Print E-mail

training

Bits Equestrian Outlet is under new ownership.

Since her first job as a polo groom in sixth grade, horses have been the driving factor in Jessica Laemmle DVM’s life. With her son getting older, the veterinarian needed to make a change to balance her work and family. When she heard that Bits Equestrian, the used tack shop at Rancho El Camino Equestrian Center in Del Mar, was possibly closing she decided she needed to buy it.

 
July 2017 - Calling All Future Riders
Written by Kim F. Miller
Thursday, 29 June 2017 21:36
PDF Print E-mail

training

Heritage Los Angeles riding school gets a new owner and a big goal sheet.

by Kim F. Miller

Tori English signs her e-mails with the Winston Churchill quote, “No hour of life is wasted that is spent in the saddle.” And it’s not just a quote for her: it’s the inspiration for her purchase of the Traditional Equitation School at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center in Burbank.

 
July 2017 - Philip Klipa: Marlay Farms
Written by CRM
Thursday, 29 June 2017 21:31
PDF Print E-mail

training

Positive approach leads to more confidence and less stress.

As they move along in their careers, some trainers stop riding or showing and only focus on teaching and training. Philip Klipa had been on that same path until recently. The Los Angeles Equestrian Center-based hunter/jumper professional recently stepped back into the show ring after many years.  Along with coaching and training clients in his Marlay Farms program, he plans to continue competing, along with riding in a clinic—in this case with Bernie Traurig—another thing he hasn’t done in many years.

 
July 2017 - Clean Flight Equestrian: Mimi Harwell
Written by CRM
Thursday, 29 June 2017 21:27
PDF Print E-mail

training

East Bay Area hunter/jumper program soars from a horsemanship intensive foundation.

Hunter/jumper trainer Mimi Harwell believes it is important to get the details right. “Taking care of the horses, teaching the riders, and making sure the right homework is getting done will always pay off in positive results,” she says. She puts her philosophy into practice as owner and head trainer of Clean Flight Equestrian, located at the beautiful Sunny Hill Farm in the East Bay’s Walnut Creek.

 
July 2017 - SuperMask
Written by CRM
Thursday, 29 June 2017 21:14
PDF Print E-mail

training

More coverage and better fit in re-designed popular Farnam product.

Ever since SuperMask® horse fly mask came on the market three decades ago, Farnam has been the leader in fly masks for horses. As of 2017, a redesign on the popular product means more coverage, better fit and protection.

 
<< Start < Prev 1 2 3 4 Next > End >>
Page 1 of 4