Horse Trainer / Instructor

Horse Trainer / Instructor

A horse trainer or instructor works with horses to ready them for riders, races or shows. They typically are expected to analyze horses’ dispositions to anticipate any possible behavioral problems such as kicking, tossing or biting. Then, they train accordingly to prevent future behavioral problems. Additionally, trainers/instructors assist horses in adapting to gear, acclimating to riding on various terrains and performing various exercises.
What Responsibilities Will I Have?: 
  • Assist horses in adapting to saddles and bridles
  • Reward and train horses to obey commands
  • Analyze horses’ dispositions for possible behavioral problems
  • Train to prevent future behavioral problems
  • Teach horses to perform various exercises
  • Be strongly versed in various equestrian styles and train horses accordingly
  • Acclimate horses to riding on various terrains and to boarding trailers
  • Observe horses' nutrition and health; notify veterinarian if needed
  • Assist in grooming and make grooming recommendations
  • Maintain stables and waste management
  • Feed and water horses
Recommended High School Courses: 
The following high school courses are recommended: agricultural education, biology, animal science and mathematics.
Education/Training Required: 
An associate degree in equine science or equine studies is typically required to become a horse trainer. You may look into additional courses, workshops or apprenticeships to become more familiar with training horses.
Future Job Market Outlook: 
Typical Employers: 
A horse trainer may work for public or private stables or horse breeders, rodeo companies, large ranches, or they may be self-employed.
Suggested Professional Organizations and Associations: 
  • Walking Horse Trainers Association
  • American Quarter Horse Association
  • Certified Horsemanship Association
  • Equine Science Society
  • National Barrel Horse Association
Average Annual Full-Time Salary: 
$45,000
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Salary data is provided by the AgCareers.com Compensation Benchmark Review™. These salaries should be considered as examples and are provided for educational and exploratory purposes. The salary information provided should not be used as a benchmark. Actual salaries are influenced by numerous variables including but not limited to demographics, size and scope of the role, level of experience, qualifications, and education of the worker.