Equine Transition #2 - Page 33

April 2019 | Industry cHanges

I’m a member of the British Grooms Association and also a British Horse Society Accredited Professional Coach. Both organisations offer a level of insurance cover and a great deal of support if you work in the equine industry.

Equine Transition / 33

...over the last 30 years

My Career Path

I left school in the early 1990s and enrolled on a “YTS” course (Youth Training Scheme), which nowadays is an apprenticeship. I was based in a mixed yard that had full liveries - mainly hunters and eventers and also a riding school. There were four other YTS girls and a few permanent staff, and we worked 8am to 5pm, 5 days a week for £35. I used to ask to stay late and teach the pony club groups that came in the evening! I often turned up on my days off to ride as well. I stayed there for three years and completed most of my BHSAI as they were paid for as part of the course. In those days, if you wanted to work with horses there were fewer options available, as equine courses were only just starting to become available at agricultural colleges. Today, training options have expanded and more academic routes are commonplace.

Over the course of my wide and varied career, I’ve worked in a number of different types of yard, including showjumping, dressage, stud and racing. I loved them all and worked as many hours as I could, often without any extra pay, to gain valuable experience teaching. I gained my BHSAI Intermediate Stable Manager (Stage 4 Care) and my Intermediate Teaching along with a few other non-equine specific qualifications for general teaching.

I have to confess that teaching has always been where my heart lies, I love solving problems with horse and rider combinations and watching them develop together over the long term. I also enjoy caring for horses on a daily basis and turning horses out immaculately for their competitive disciplines.

For the last 10 years, I’ve been a self-employed Freelance Groom and Instructor which I really enjoy. I love being my own boss and having the freedom to choose when and where I work. Being self-employed means that I don’t get holiday pay, sick pay and other benefits, so it’s up to me to ensure I have suitable cover in place.