You’re probably on this page because you’re very serious about riding and riding well. You’re driven to be one amazing equestrian! That’s exactly why I was looking around for a site like EquestrianCoach.com. Now that I’ve found it, I want to share it with you guys and tell you what I think. So here’s my EquestrianCoach.com review!
Coaching sessions can be inconvenient and expensive…
I know that for a lot of riders, not only is it not always convenient to have a coach around but it’s also not always affordable. Maybe you’re living somewhere remote right now? Maybe the budget is tightening up?
Heck, maybe you just disagree with your current coach far too often and want some second opinions? Or maybe you like coaching yourself because you’re just that awesome.
For me personally, I’m addicted to stuff like this. I love learning as much as I can now so that when I’m back in the saddle I have a bunch of new things to work on and new ideas to try. It’s also convenient because I can watch it anytime at home or when I’m at work procrastinating (ooopsies!).
It’s good to get second opinions and new ideas…
I am kind of stubborn – and I know some of you are too. There were times when I was younger that I just didn’t like listening to my coach. I wanted to know what other people were saying, and what other riders were doing. It’s been a while since I’ve had a coach for a mixture of the reasons above. But I still like learning from others and getting new ideas.
Like obviously you should always keep your heels down and your eyes on where you’re going. But what about keeping your core loose or tight, keeping your legs heavy or taught, or tightening your knees? I think some of these are more debatable. It depends what your style is, what you’re comfortable with.
Then there’s training with your horse to prepare for competitions. You want train in the most effective manner possible in a way that’s tailored to your horse. So how do you set up your jumping courses? What’s the best technique to fix a sided drift over jumps? How about getting a stubborn horse to switch leads? If any of this is resonating with you, keep reading. A site like this may be just what you need.
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Breakdown of EquestrianCoach.com
EquestrianCoach.com is an online educational service for equestrians founded by Bernie Traurig. They coach in dressage, eventing and show jumping using the forward riding system. The site is built around around paid instructional videos. There’s also some free videos, although most of them won’t be extremely useful to you – they are mostly for pure entertainment or promotional purposes.
The site offers monthly and yearly subscriptions during which you can access all of their videos. Also they ofter a service through which you can ask professional show jumpers, dressage riders and eventers for advice.
“Ask the experts” is a panel of experts is moderated by Bernie, who has over half a century of experience as an elite equestrian. He has experience in all 3 of the International Equestrian Olympic fields: Show Jumping, Dressage and Eventing.
Each panel member answers 1-2 questions per month. From anything from having a fear of falling after a bad experience to choosing the right bit – you can ask them.
There’s also access to book various in-person clinics and workshops with Bernie here. You can check his calendar to see if he’s anywhere near you and if there’s room in the clinics. You can also contact Bernie at Bernie@equestriancoach.com for details or if you have questions.
Bernie has also put together a complete collection of DVDs on mastering the Hunter/Jumper forward riding system. You can order them online for about $135 through the site here. I would probably recommend starting off with a monthly subscription and then see if you like it. If so, you can always go back and purchase the DVD set.
I haven’t watched the DVD collection because I’m more of a fan of choosing videos to watch based on issues I want to fix at the time. I also like to get some new ideas for specifc things I’m having trouble improving. Learning an entire course start to finish wasn’t what I was interested in, so I won’t write too much about it for now, but maybe you are? I may get it later on and then I’ll write another review. Comment below if you want me to!
You can also access the EquestrianCoach blog here where they talk about some common issues in Dressage, Eventing and Hunter/Jumper and how to fix them. They also have some pretty cool articles on recent events such as major competition updates and rider success stories.
Pros and Cons for EquestrianCoach.com
- The videos really are packed with valuable information for serious show jumpers, eventers and dressage riders.
- There are new videos added every month.
- The videos cater to novice riders all the way to professional riders and everything in between.
- Gives you ideas for new exercises or different approaches to fix problems or improve skills.
- Shows you how to perfect various training techniques.
- You can learn a lot more in a month than in conventional lessons for a lot less money.
- You can access the videos from tablets and phones as well as your computer.
- Learn at your own pace at home whenever you want to around your schedule – don’t worry about trying to schedule in lessons, classes or training sessions.
- You can binge watch hours unlimited for the amount of time that your subscription lasts (no extra fees, no limits, nothing).
- If you’re thinking of getting this as a present, then there’s a gift subscription that lets you specify the dates that you can start the subscription and specify the number of months you let it run for (either 1, 3 or 6).
- The yearly membership with premium access to “Ask the experts” is very pricy.
- Video lessons obviously cannot replace certain aspects of a coached lesson where the coach can observe and interact with you.
- Each panel member only answers 1-2 questions per month so you may not get your questions answered for a while.
- If you’re on the monthly rather than the yearly subscriptions your questions have lower priority.
- The quality of certain videos isn’t excellent.
- The smoothness of the dialogue is sometimes not great because they’re not scripted.
- The videos aren’t made to be entertaining but rather instructional. That said, they will be entertaining to anyone who is passionate and wants to learn and improve.
- Not every video that you’re going to have access to you’re going to want to watch – some will be of stuff you already know and common sense but some of them will offer great ideas.
Different membership & subscription options
What do I think?
I think that the site is an amazing resource if you – like me – just don’t have the time or the money to spend on coaching lessons. Even if you do, I think it’s still always good to see what other people are saying and to get some new ideas.
Personally, I think the best thing to do is to sign up for a monthly subscription between 1 and 3 months. I wouldn’t go directly for a year long one unless you really have the extra money to spend. Also don’t do the pay-per-view unless you know of one video you’re dying to see and you don’t want to watch any of the others because it’s just so expensive for what you’re getting.
Even with the monthly subscription for 1 month you can watch plenty of videos for $30, and it will give you plenty of stuff to try. It’s pretty affordable to do that and then you can spend your spare time binging on a few over the weekends, make notes, even record them and keep them for future reference.
Once you’ve watched the videos that you’re interested in, then just cancel. If you find the site extremely helpful and you love the videos and you just can’t watch enough then you can always keep it for a few months or even sign up for an additional year.
The one thing I’m not overly enthusiastic about and I think could be done better is the expert panel. I really think that the members should answer everyone’s questions maybe like once per week rather than only a few every month. It’s just disappointing to wait until they choose your question.
Keep in mind that once you hit 10 months on the monthly subscription you’ve paid what you would have paid for a yearly. So if you start to think at all you might want access for that long then go with the yearly.
What do other users think?
One last thing!
I just want to mention again that if you have any friends or family that you know are passionate about riding as well, I think this makes an excellent gift. You can time it so it starts exactly on their birthday or whatever special occasion you’re getting it for and so that it lasts 1, 3 or 6 months.
There’s really just no way you can go wrong giving something like this to a riding fanatic. And for a month its 30 bucks and it’s worth way more than any other 30 dollar gift that you could get.
The only thing is maybe steer clear of younger riders who love horses but aren’t really serious yet about competitions. They may find the videos just a little too boring and serious.
It isn’t like seeing a horse movie – they are legitimate coaching lessons. If you think this might be for you or a gift for someone you love, then check it out by clicking on the ad below. We also got you 10% off if you use our code “BOOTSANDBRIDLES”! You can just enter the code when prompted on whatever you’d like to purchase.
Hopefully this has been helpful to you, and has given you some ideas for coaching alternatives. Please don’t hesitate to leave your questions and comments below! I love knowing what you think and whether you enjoyed this EquestrianCoach.com review.
Happy riding 🙂