GenNext News: Edition 2
It Takes A Village
by Andrea Harry
Good things come to those who wait, but only things left by those who hustle. The saddle horse industry is a very small one, and unfortunately it is not growing at a rapid rate. Barns are not popping up all over the country and customers are not coming out of the woodworks. Those of us who hope to be part of a thriving industry in forty years have no choice but to learn how to keep it alive. This requires young professionals to step up and learn what it takes to be leaders. We have a group of young people who are eager to be a part of the organizations that make up our industry.
What many people struggle with is figuring out how to get involved. Let me just tell you from experience, you have to involve yourself. This requires throwing yourself into a group of people and saying, “I want to help!” No one is going to turn a helping hand away when we need all the help we can get.
Look up the leaders of the organization you are most interested in being a part of and reach out to them. There is power in numbers and everyone has something to offer.
Take the time to introduce yourself to everyone you can. Hopefully in ten years people will know you by name because you took the time to make sure they knew it. If you have a specific trainer or instructor you would like to learn from, tell them! Chances are they will make sure that you have the opportunity to do so.
Set goals for yourself outside of your comfort zone and work so hard to accomplish them that people can’t help but notice you. Anyone who is in this sport for the long haul knows that it takes hard work, lots of sweat, some tears, and the will to never give up.
I want to make sure that every single person reading this right now knows that YOU ARE INVITED TO BE A PART OF THIS!
Please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to be more involved in the UPHA Young Professionals. It takes a village and we have a great one. Join us!
The Instructor’s Guide On:
How to Plan Your Summer Camps
by Avery Scheurich
Summer camp, a time for parents and business owners to go “YAY” and a time for your school horses to go “NEEEIIGHHH.” Camps provide not only a good source of income for programs but it is also a time to get new kids in the door, getting your “show” or more advanced kids involved in the barn and creating a sense of comradery amongst everyone. Here are a few common questions when it comes to your summer camp and some examples of how we do camp at Cascade Stables.
What do you do with the kids all day? Camp should be not only fun but an educational activity as well, which is why we started giving the kids folders each week with work sheets, information sheets, and a skill level sheet. Monday – Thursday is going over everything and Friday is what we call “Test Day” where the kids have to demonstrate everything they have learned and work towards earning a certificate for passing such skill level. The folders became a huge hit with the parents and the kids get to take them home at the end of the week. While one group is riding, one group will be working on haltering/leading/brushing, and another will be doing other educational activities such as parts of the tack, parts of the horse, colors, and markings. After lunch the kids ride again with a fun craft and then an afternoon chore (i.e. cleaning water buckets, tidying up the saddle/bridle area, washing brushes (although they much prefer painting our white horses and turning them into a color that you have never seen before).
How do you split the children up? There are camps that have age restrictions on certain sessions, for example “Tiny Tot Camp” or “Mini Half Day Camp” up to “Advanced Showmanship Camp.” Our summer camp is open to all kids ages 5 and up, riders of all levels. We split them into groups based on experience. There is no right or wrong way on how you set your groups up; this just seems to work for us.
What you need to get started? The most important aspect by far is a proper release form. The release forms should include name of child(ren), age, parental and emergency contact information (a
pediatrician is a good number to have as well). Allergies are also very important to know that way you can make sure everyone is in a safe environment. You will almost always have that one child who never knew they were allergic to horses.
Is certain attire important for camp? If parents would like their children to come home with all of their toes at the end of the day flip flops are a NO NO!! We recommend boots or any closed toe shoes with a one inch heel (we love the pink sparkly cowboy boots personally).
Although temperatures get to be scorching in New Orleans in August, all children must wear a type of long pants to prevent the complaint of blisters and pinching and helmets are a requirement while any child is riding. We find that if you have fun, energetic and positive counselors your camp will be very successful. This may not be a complete list of what you need to start a summer camp program but hopefully this will help guide you to build your own program. Cheers to summer!
Success In Saddles: An Inside Look
by Hannah Sette
“Action and adaptability create opportunity.” -Garrison Wynn
In my short time as a professional, I have learned the importance of this statement. Being adaptable in an ever changing industry is something that can be a challenge when faced with similar daily tasks, but is key to success. I was recently asked what we do at Success in Saddles and hope to give some insight on our 360 degree approach.
At the core, Success in Saddles is a training operation for the show horse breeds, emphasizing the Saddlebred and Hackney. I work alongside Ellen Beard and assist in managing the daily training and operations. In addition, we operate a small lesson program focusing on rider balance and timing. We believe in the total package of a successful team from the rider and their fitness to the horse and their performance.
Both Ellen and myself hold a Masters Degree in Strategic Leadership, which I believe has only strengthened our team. Adding to our arsenal, we utilize Ironwear Training Gear for the rider and have access to a Magna Wave, Revitavet Light Therapy System, IceVibe Boots, and Soft Ride Spa Boots for the horse.
The Ironwear Equestrian Training Gear is a fantastic tool when trying to teach a rider about the feel they need when they are balanced and in time with their horse. In turn, it allows the horse to be able to perform at their peak with a rider who is in tune to their needs each step of the way.
In regards to the horse, we look at each individually and try and see where we can get the most out of them. We try to utilize the rehab tools we have to help peak a horse for when they show and to keep them running smoothly on a daily basis.
In addition, we have had some horses come to us for a short period of time who are in the recovery phase of an injury and we work in collaboration with the vet to help get them back in shape. Collaboration is key for success. We often are called upon to assist others behind the scenes to help keep their rider or equine athlete performing to their best ability.
Personally, I love nothing more than to share our breeds with new people whether it be a Saddlebred, Hackney, or Morgan. Most recently, I have enjoyed introducing children and adults alike to the hackney breed as they are just as versatile as any and come in a small package! I have found that someone who may be intimidated by the size of a larger horse or even by riding in general may fall in love with driving a pony.
Through our focused approach we have achieved success, whether it is through an individuals goals or by supporting the needs of other professionals. We are stronger together than as individuals. I believe it is important as a Young Professional to give back the industry by creating programs that are successful both in and out of the show ring.
Packing For Horse Shows
by Alex Gravett
It’s show season once again and everyone has the same daunting task associated with any show, but more daunting with the first one of the season…packing. The anxiety and organizational methods with packing for the first show of the year come in all shapes and sizes depending on the size of your barn and show string, but we all go through the same motions and thought processes to get it done. Countless lists, trips to Wal-Mart, Lowe’s, tack and feed stores, and chances are there will be at least one trip to one of the above mentioned upon arrival at the show.
The most important things to pack are the basic necessities for each horse traveling to the show. Any and all equipment each one needs to perform, work and be cared for, including but not limited to tack, boots/protective gear, special pads, switches, brace/high tail crupper, work bits, medications and daily supplements. We make a list for each horse attending and what they need and cross it off as it gets packed. There is always one last list for the morning we ship out with any last minute supplies, refrigerated medications or other things we specifically need that morning. We also make stall cards ahead of time for each horse listing their grain, hay, supplements and an emergency contact number because we do not have caretakers who sleep at the stalls.
After the horses, I think about the needs of the clients attending the show and what we will need for setting everything up to accommodate them. Again, we have lists; lists for dressing and hospitality rooms, lists for tack rooms, lists for the feed room. Lots and lots of lists. To save room on the trailer, we do try and shop for beverages and snacks once we arrive at the show.
At the end of any big show, I try and go back a few days after we get home and make a list for the following year of things that worked well, things we forgot, things that didn’t work well or need to change next time we attend that venue. It has really helped ease some of the stress of trying to remember it all so not as many things go forgotten, unnoticed or unplanned.
Being an overly Type-A person, I try and leave as little to chance or happenstance. My biggest advice on packing for shows is to make lists, many of them! Save the lists until after, make notes, keep files and on with the show! Best of luck to all this season and happy packing!
Breeding: A Labor of Love
by Keen Behringer
It’s a time of year filled with excitement. Show season is beginning, the frost has melted away, green grass is finally growing, and new young horses are hitting the show ring for the first time. For breeders this is a season that spurs the dreams of the future. What begins as lineage, names and potential crosses on paper will turn into the champions of tomorrow. Breeders are marking their stallion books and
looking at their mares' history or lack there of. They are diligently trying to decide just what bloodlines they will have the most success with and what produced great horses in the past.
Breeding season is a busy time for veterinarians, stallion managers, breeders and caretakers. There are many decisions to be made, and much to keep track of. Mares in foal are now approaching due dates and facebook is filled with birth
announcements of beautiful foals. Broodmare caretakers are watching udders, looking for bags filled with milk and wax building up showing imminent signs of foaling.
Stallion owners are taking calls, bookings and collecting. They are against the clock trying to get shipments where they need to be for cycling mares ready to ovulate.
Some stallions will be hard to collect, bossy, and won’t follow orders. Young stallions are still trying to figure out their jobs and mind their manners. The older stallions may be growing weary, but with records of success and production of champions the demand for their breedings requires the effort. Their semen is evaluated under a microscope and sent off to produce one more great one.
There is a buzz in the air. New life erupts in foaling stalls and on ultrasound screens. Vets are showing the first little heartbeat of next year’s foals to the owners and caretakers. This is a difficult season for many however, and truly a labor of love.
Many go without sleep in order to help a sickly foal nurse through the night. Breeders sit in a stall instead of their bed to keep an aggressive, maiden mare from harming her foal. No, breeding isn’t for the faint of heart as it comes with great ups and downs. The lost foal, the mare that aborted, or the mare with a high fever and a retained placenta are all testing uphill battles. All of these things wear on a breeder and sometimes make it seem heavy to go on. The love of the horse carries through though.
Renewed faith in the grandest of fantasies comes every time that mare turns back and nuzzles her foal for the first time. For the breeder, quietly sitting in a bed of straw in the corner of a foaling stall, watching this moment is what dreams are made of!
About the AMHA Young Adult Alliance
by Steven Handy
The American Morgan Horse Association Young Adult Alliance (YAA) is an organization of 18-40 year old amateurs and professionals working together to strengthen the Morgan breed. Established in 2013, this group was founded to create a platform for young adult members to build relationships, develop professionally, become civically and philanthropically active, and to contribute to the economic success of the Morgan community.
Annually, we award a judging school scholarship offering reimbursement of up to $1,500 for young adults interested in obtaining their Morgan judging card. We also host events at horse shows to increase excitement and competition that have been wildly successful. And we have produced a series of educational videos from How to Harness Your Horse with Harry Sebring to Show Ring Strategy with Jenny Taylor and even building an Academy Program with Kristen Logan. We look forward to continuing our video series this year with a focus on promoting and explaining to the public the show horse.