Sarah Tinsdale(Dressage, Hunter-Jumper, Jumper and Eventing)
I started my "horse life" before I could remember it. I was born into a horse family, and being raised in a barn (literally!) I learned the hard work, dedication and responsibility of what it takes to be a true horseman. I always worked off my board. Always groomed and tacked my own horses. Was taught how to care for the horse in every aspect from basic care to grooming, tacking, medical etc. I became totally hooked and there wasn't a thing about my life that didn't involve a horse.
Growing up, I was lucky enough to have incredible guidance from my aunt, who is also a trainer, Michelle Campbell. Being in the barn around her business while growing up I learned a lot and was exposed to some amazing classical training at a very young age. Michelle always instilled in me that patience, hard work and fairness to the horse above all are the biggest principles of riding and training. I have definitely instilled those practices throughout my career.
When I was 15, I started a working student program with Renee Carter. Renee was an amazing teacher to me and taught me an incredible amount. I got to ride some really nice horses and we worked with a lot of youngsters getting them started under saddle. I've taken a lot of those strategies and brought them to my training as well. I learned a ton about barn management and it was working with her that I decided I wanted this as a career myself and would do what it took to make that happen.
I started freelance riding and trying to go out on my own. I was called by a dear client and friend about a horse she had at her barn that needed to ONLY be worked on the ground and would I be interested. Of course I was taking on anyone and anything at that point so I accepted and went to meet said horse. Love at first sight. Tall dark and handsome Dutch warm blood gelding with bloodlines to die for. He was having issues and was put in the field to sit with the uncertainty of being ridden again. We worked together for 3 months on the ground, gaining each other's trust and there were some really, really shaky moments. But he had an eye of an incredible partner and I was determined not to give up on him. I wanted to ride this horse. I was going to ride this horse. I offered it to the owner and just before she sent him to me, she hit me with an offer I couldn't turn down. You ride him, he's yours. Okay let's do it. This horse's name is Wicked Good (hence my business name) , and 4 years later he is my once in a lifetime horse. He showed me how to have undeniable patience and not to give up. Now he is the barn favorite and my almost 5 year old son can lead him, ride him and basically whatever he wants with him and it is truly amazing to watch. Then, he's all business for me-whether we are schooling our flat work working up the levels, jumping a course, or doing Christmas parade (yes he does parades) this horse has had my back, because I had his.
This is when I decided I wanted to really devote my training to the difficult cases. It is intriguing and a challenge and the progression is such an amazing reward.
I also really enjoy teaching. I have students that range from trail riders, Dressage, hunter jumpers, showing and not showing. I really enjoy explaining things in a way that is understandable and the feeling when instructing a rider and to see the partnership develop and light bulbs go off is truly rewarding. I love all of my students and clients as if they were family and am so thankful to have such incredibly amazing and supportive people in my life.
Last but certainly not least, about a year and a half ago I received an unexpected call for two horses needing board and a rescue situation. I took them the next day and started a partnership with an absolutely amazing human being who had devoted her entire life to giving back to the animals. Now, we together have 11 rescues off the track thoroughbred's, junkyard ponies, ex show horses, You name it if they need a soft landing we give it to them. And they have a forever caring home. This had been a complete mind changer for me. I love my riding, training and teaching, but there's so much more to this industry that gets overlooked, because of the glitz and glam and money. Meanwhile these animals that we use end up in horrible situations because their time is up for whatever their purpose was. I am now super invested in the rescues and spend just as much time to that as I do my training career. I am volunteering my time riding at another local rescue as well and love what they are doing.
Every horse has a purpose, you have to let them speak to you in their language and most importantly you have to listen to them.
I am currently one score away from my USDF bronze medal and have the goal of Prix St George this year with my boy Wicked.
Sarah is a gifted and knowledgeable horsewoman with unlimited patience, and she's particularly good with young, green, or misunderstood horses. She is honest and always puts the horse first, which can be hard to find in this industry! My mare made great progress in her training program and performed well at shows, and when I made the decision to sell, Sarah was there to help with every step of the process. I would not hesitate to send another horse to her in the future, and can't recommend her highly enough.
Sarah rode my horse Lark, while he was for sale. She has a very soft rider, yet is also very confident and can really bring out the best in every horse. Thanks to the work she did riding him and showing him off he was sold to an excellent home. I'd definitely recommend her!
I have been taking lessons from Sarah and I'm finally enjoying my horse after almost 9 years of owning her. The best part is, Sarah also appreciate the horse I love. Thank you for being the best instructor and teaching me to enjoy my horse!
Our staff of outstanding instructors at Wicked GoodDressage have been teaching beginner,
intermediate and advanced riders for a combination of over 15 years. The lesson program at Fox Trot Farm teaches riding and natural horsemanship from the ground up. Regular weekly lessons emphasizing correct position, control, safety and true horsemanship are offered of learning both mounted and un-mounted. There are opportunities to start showing at any level from schooling shows on up. We emphasize sportsmanship and personal goals as well as equitation and safety. Most importantly we focus on good care and respect for the horse and
genuine love of the sport and the true art of riding. We have
fun and hope you do too.
Dressage, Hunter-Jumper, Jumper and Eventing
(Prices subject to chance without notice)
Beginner - For the true beginner. In this class you will learn how to halter, lead, groom and tack a horse, knot typing and safety awareness. While mounted you will learn how to walk and trot independently in an arena with others and steer a horse through an obstacle course. Balance is a crucial component learned at this stage.
Beginner/Intermediate -Beyond the true beginner skills. Our class advances the skills such as stirrup and girth adjustments, balance, steering/control, coordination, problem solving and organization.
Skills at the trot such as 2-point position, circles, serpentines and figure 8's become a focus. A student may spend as many sessions as necessary at this level to become competent before going on to the intermediate level.
Intermediate - Has mastered the beginner/intermediate skills. This class will add skills such as bending exercises for the horse, lateral movements, different lengths of stride and pace, and how to get the horse "on the bit". This will be coordinated with learning the basics of jumping class, dressage or western reining.
Advanced - Our
advanced class is for refinement and polish in jumping,
dressage, eventing and western reining. This course will be a
collaboration between the rider and the instructor to determine
the specific content.
All classes have a set curriculum. Riders will need to show proficiency in order to advance to the next class. Due to the importance of understanding and practicing the basics, many individuals may need to repeat a level until they are comfortable with the skills they have acquired.
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