Whether you have been loyal to the same trainer for as long as you can remember, or are just embarking on a journey with a new instructor, it can be easy to get complacent in our role as a pupil. Here, BD UKCC level three coach Alison Short gives some pointers on how to get the most out of your trainer.
1. Agree goals
Set realistic targets and work towards them. A good trainer will give you homework and will want to see your commitment to improvement between sessions.
2. Be prepared
Schedule some preparation time so that you’re in the right frame of mind to absorb information when your instructor arrives, and aren’t left rushing around tacking up while they wait for you.
Listen — and never be afraid to ask your trainer questions. Keep any conversation concise and to the point, however, or you’ll find you spend more of the lesson talking than riding.
4. Have faith
Try to be trainable and open to new ideas. Tell your instructor if you feel uncomfortable about something, but always be prepared to have a go.
5. Be patient
Training is progressive, so don’t expect to find a quick fix — there’s no such thing. Turning up a few weeks before the eventing season for a crash course in dressage is unlikely to work.
6. Take responsibility
Find your own feet, so that you can train and compete without constant input. The right trainer is not afraid to make their pupil a success.
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