Tamarack Farm will block you for pointing out obvious inconsistencies in their posts. Featured in a post stating that Any use of leverage in training aids is inappropriate is a photo of the use of a long shanked hackamore. That is leverage. Sad. I used to have a modicum of respect for Emerson. A simple observation of the photo demonstrating leverage warrants Censorship is truly egregious. Denny has lost his way.
There is a lot worse about DE too that Im pretty sure is going to surface soon. I unfollowed his page ages ago.
He was also posting highly inappropriate borderline racist stuff not long ago and was blasted all over Twitter for it lol
Wow. I had no idea. Links?
There’s a very long post about this from over the summer. Denny is a savage narcissist who can’t have an adult conversation if he is isn’t 100% correct and submitted too. There’s also talk of possible sexual harassments/abuse allegations from more than one source.
I find it disheartening that his posts often go viral as a paradigm of horsemanship.
I’ve also noticed his page is a soapbox for him to spout his opinions. Which is fine, it is his prerogative to do so.
But I find it hard to resolve that someone who has so much trouble with intelligent conversation and listening to others is somehow able to set those personality traits aside when working with horses or students.
movie trailer voice He probably doesn’t.
Its his own personal echo chamber.
@fair_judy I can’t find the Twitter posts now, they might be private users.
Yeah but that was implied 2 years ago and here we are. He is untouched.
It was an off-color and insensitive statement more than it was racist.
He posted a picture of an indian war pony, marked up with indian paint (the hand markings, dashes, dots, etc). The picture was labeled as to what each marking meant to the individual riding the horse.
He then said we should have a modern day urban version of that - a marking to put on if we’ve ridden a horse through a drive through, if we’ve ridden bareback in the ocean, etc etc.
It was far more off color and tone deaf than it was blatantly racist. Calling people “racist” for being a little off the mark dulls the edge that word has, and will make people numb to it.
Additionally, he immediately took the photo and post down when called out, and publicly apologized.
Lord knows I’m not Denny’s biggest fan, so I can’t believe I’m here defending him for this. But him getting thrown in the wringer by a bunch of white women who think they’re native because they bought a dream catcher on a rez once and have a cheesy picture of a wolf on their wall kinda bothered me.
He doesn’t. He spent an entire weekend clinic with accomplished riders who had ridden with him in the past explaining inside rein to outside leg, and repeating the mixing bowl/dough analogy.
He can ride fine, though not always the fluffy “horse can do no wrong” impression he gives on facebook. But an instructor, he is not.
Ugh I unfollowed him but my barnmate who is returning to riding after a huge break worships him. So hard for me to keep my mouth shut, and even if she spouts what he’s saying she doesn’t actually follow the advice.
Denny is an excellent teacher. He has taught probably hundreds of people. I don’t know why someone would make that statement. I rode with him for 12 years, I am an instructor myself. The " racist" thing he immediately deleted.
If there is evidence of him being abusive, where is it and why has he not been reported to safesport? I will be the first to stand behind an accuser, but where it is?
I think some people really enjoy bashing Denny, but I find it puzzling.
I was a working student. The experience you get when you aren’t paying is markedly different.
And from all the things I saw, all I heard was him repeating himself and his version of things over and over again. It’s not bad advice - I never said that. But it’s not instructing when you just keep repeating analogies. If I wanted that, I’d read his book.
The quantity of people someone has attempted to teach a skill to says nothing about the content or quality of their teaching. As a professional educator myself I can assure you that that is not a measure of competency used in the educational field.
It’s not like he’s holding seminars. People go take a lesson, they like it, they go back. Hundreds of them.
Not a huge Denny fan but he is clear he will delete people he considers argumentative.
Also, not sure that repeating the same thing over and over is a problem for a trainer. I mean, trainers have been telling me the same revolving door of 25 things I do wrong my whole life, and I still do them wrong more often than I care to admit.
Steinkraus said it best when he said the secret of riding is keeping a horse forward and straight. But it is both the most simple thing to say and most difficult thing to do constantly on a horse.
a while ago he posted about how there is no link in America between eventing breeders and eventing trainers. I commented that some breeders and trainers are trying to change this, and mentioned the US Event Horse Futurity. He did not respond, but within the week he commented on how terrible futuritiies are and how bad it is to ride and compete.young horses etc etc.
He also frequently extols the viruses of the TB and the Morgan horse as talented athletes and praises them as American breeds that people should turn to, and he also has imported quite a few horses from Ireland and the continent. It also seems that these imports are young and started under saddle and likely have been jumped if not competed as part of the sales prep.
His FB page is a place that attracts people by validating our feelings about hard work and makes us feel “good” by pointing to various boogeymen to be angry at when we notice problems in our beloved sport.
Sadly, he refuses to respect people who are looking towards the future and are trying to find new ways to ensure safety on XC and find new ways to promote the eventer and the sport.
One of my claim to fames from my teenage years is that Denny Emerson asked to ride my horse for a minute when I did a group clinic with him once. Mind you, my horse was a $700 backyard appaloosa that tried his heart out to compensate for his lackluster athletic ability (as far as dressage anyway, he was a pretty good jumper…but we topped out at Training Level eventing). Anyway, Denny got on him and did some things (I honestly can’t remember what) and he praised me and my trainer because my horse had such a solid and proper foundation of training. We were beaming with pride while watching Denny Freaking Emerson ride my little appy around complimenting him (and us).
I can’t honestly remember anything I learned from Denny that day, but we found him friendly and generous. He also complimented my barn mate’s pony, saying he could imagine him at 16 hands going at Badminton (he was a super talented pony!).
Denny turns 80 next August. Anyone who has parents around that age (I do) knows they can start saying cringey things as they get older. My mother is a year younger than Denny, and I have to remind her to mind her manners a lot more with each passing year, LOL! I think when people reach a certain age, they just don’t give a damn what others think. I’m sure I’ll be the same way.
That said, I don’t know the man and had one brief (albeit pleasant) encounter with him. So, he may be a total jerk. But I know some people who cannot stand the dressage/eventing trainer I worked with regularly when I was younger. If I mention his name even now, some 25+ years later, there will inevitably be someone who scoffs in disgust because he’s supposedly so horrible and mean to his students. He was never anything but pleasant to me. I learned a ton from him. So…yeah. Consider the source.
Certainly many themes are consistent across all levels of riding, but that’s not the example the other poster gave. They were talking about him repeating the same instructional point over and over even though it was not relevant to the performance of the riders he was supposed to be teaching. That’s akin to harping on about the importance of knowing your multiplication tables when teaching a calculus class. It’s likely both totally unnecessary and irrelevant to the skills the students are presently working on and thus a waste of everyone’s time.
Ugh, he deleted it right away so its ok then??
Also, just because accusers are not wanting to speak on the record doesn’t mean it didn’t happen.