I moved from Southern California to Northern California last year. I am in college now, and have taken a few years off from riding due to injury and subsequent surgeries to correct it. I am finally feeling like I am ready to ride again, but my parents aren’t so sure about it, and therefore are not incredibly willing to fully support this venture financially.
I am a more than competent rider who has ridden lots of green horses and “problem” horses. With a few years off I am, understandably, a little rusty. Since I was used to riding 6 days a week and several horses a day before I quit, the approximate one lesson a week my parents are willing to support is going to be a big change for me, and I was hoping to get back in the saddle a little more often.
So here’s my question. After I start at a barn as a (paying) lesson client (and get back into good riding shape), how common is it for a trainer to be willing to let a student work off some of their lessons? I have ZERO desire to ever set foot in a show ring again, but I would love to be able to ride more, or even do things like clean tack. Basically anything.
Now, if this is something that ever happens, what kind of barn should I look for in order to set myself up for success when I ask about this? I really am totally lost on this as I was a client at my previous barn for many years and the progression to riding lots of nice horses all the time was a natural one.
Sorry for the novel.