Buffalo, NY - The Buffalo Therapeutic Riding Center hosted a very successful teaching clinic recently with George H. Morris, world renowned trainer, rider, and U.S. Show Jumping Chef d'Equipe. The clinic was also a USHJA Trainer's Symposium.
The clinic, held November 6-8, 2009, was scheduled and organized by Susie Schoellkopf, Executive Director of the Buffalo Therapeutic Riding Center and head trainer of SBS Farms, Inc. at the Buffalo Equestrian Center.
The clinic was held over three days and hosted 18 riders in three different groups: Intermediate (3'3"), Advanced (3'6"), and Jumpers (3'6"-4'3"). Riders in the clinic included Jennifer Alfano, rider and trainer at SBS Farms, U.S. Show Jumping team member Callan Solem, and up-and-coming professional Chris Ewanouski.
In addition to the valuable learning experience for the riders, 180 auditors each day gained knowledge and insight at the clinic. Auditors included Susie Schoellkopf, USHJA President Bill Moroney, USHJA Director Geoff Teall, and trainers Mindy Darst, Angela Moore, and Charlie Moorcroft.
During the clinic, George Morris focused on the "basics of riding, good riding habits, and good horsemanship," said Schoellkopf. "The clinic was amazing. George did it so well, and he is an amazing teacher. Each group built on the next. I thought it was a wonderful Trainers' Symposium as well."
In addition to the Morris clinic, there were seminars on Friday and Saturday evening that explained how to apply for the USHJA Trainer's Certification Program, which was given by Moroney and USHJA Director of Programs and Education Melanie Fransen.
George H. Morris is often referred to as a founding father of hunter seat equitation. He is a legend in the sport, and his clinics are a rare and unique opportunity for riders of all levels and ages to learn from the best. Morris's most recent accomplishment was leading the United States to a team gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.
The Buffalo Equestrian Center, originally called the Buffalo Saddle and Bridle Club, was built in 1921 and is now a historic landmark. In addition to having a riding school, the facility includes the Buffalo Therapeutic Riding Center, a non-profit organization. They provide vital services to differently-abled youth riders.
In its eleventh year, the George H. Morris clinic at the Buffalo Therapeutic Riding Center continued to teach young and old alike about proper horsemanship, correct riding, and the foundations of equitation. Beyond being a learning experience for riders, the clinic helps BTRC give local Buffalo youth the unforgettable gift of horses.
For more information on the Buffalo Therapeutic Riding Center and SBS Farms, Inc., please visit www.btrc.org.