Being Part of a Show Barn
March is a very busy time of year here at the ranch. There are new foals running around, preparing for show season, and planning for the next breeding year all going on at once. Since we focus on multiple breeds it means all of that is on a triple scale at Spring Lane and our staff resemble the busy little bees running to all the new blooms popping up everywhere. Show Season is by far the busiest time of year at a show barn, months of training, loads of paperwork, and hours of sweat (especially here in Florida) have gone into making sure everything goes as planned.
However, what exactly does it mean to be part of a show barn? What are you paying for and what happens behind the scenes? For starters it means a team of highly trained staff are working for you and your horse to give you the best advantage possible. Our office staff spend all year tracking memberships, vaccines, and coggins to make sure everything stays up to date, scheduling farriers, ordering supplements and feed, and addressing any concerns clients have. They prepare your entries and work with your trainer to make the right class selections for you. Working hard to cross every t and dot every i so you have the best experience possible at the show.
While the office staff make sure documentation and scheduling is in order, the groomsmen spend countless hours cleaning stalls, feeding, bathing, and grooming your equine partner. These are the people who often know your horse better than almost anyone because they frequently spend the most time with the horses. They care for them like they are at a spa resort. They come up with special concoctions to make manes and tails look spectacular and spend their days helping trainers and caring day-to-day for the horses.
These are the part of staff that often gets unnoticed because so much of it is behind the scenes and they are true heroes at the ranch for all they do but while paperwork and daily care are necessary for things to run as they should, it’s the coach of a team that paves the path to victory. Our trainers work every day in the saddle and on the ground watching, learning, and correcting. They don’t simply put hours in the saddle, so your horse has experience, they are learning the ins and outs, the personality, the strengths and the weaknesses that make up your teammate. They are paying attention to his or her weight to make necessary changes in feed rations, feeling every step and movement to determine farrier needs, working your horse all week to make sure the team is at it’s very best so they can focus on you during the lessons.
During lessons they are watching the team like coaches often do to see the things a player can’t see when they are on the field in the middle of the action. Pushing the pair, a little harder and a little further each time so the team becomes better and better. Stressing and worrying that their team will be their best, do their best, and walk into the arena confident. They worry, because they don’t want you to have to.
The trainer is the one you want in your corner, you want them to believe in you, believe in your horse, be honest with you, and push you to excel. Natural ability, and a heart to succeed will go a long way, but a good trainer will lead the team and set the direction. This is why we put so much effort and thought into who and how we staff. We want to give you the best possible staff to reach your goals, people who genuinely care for both horse and rider, skilled and ready to help you reach your potential.
It’s simple really, when our clients succeed so do we and success whether it comes in a tri-colored ribbon or a huge smile of triumph is the best trophy! That’s what it means to be part of a show barn, having an entire staff in your corner helping you prepare and cheering you on.