Friday, July 22, 2011

A Trainer Of Merit

So often we get stuck on the negative things in life - the things that go wrong, the injustices that we want to make right, the people that drive us crazy, and all the bad things in life that we feel powerless over.  This morning I would like to focus on the positive, and tell you about someone who has had a very positive impact on my life.  His name is Lee Mancini, and he runs a horse training facility in Howell, Michigan.

Lee trains Arabians, Half Arabians, and Quarter Horses and focuses on reining, stock seat equitation, and western pleasure, but because he is a very well-rounded horseman, he is able to assist customers with their english (hunter under saddle) horses too.  Lee is very talented with a horse; he has won many National, Regional and show championships, and is able to achieve great things in his horses by taking things one step at a time, layering the training and not blowing his horses minds (or bodies).  He is effective without being a bully, and is the kind of trainer that you can trust to respect your animal.

Yet, I think what his customers appreciate the most about Lee is his attitude. He is honest.  He is funny and easy to talk to.  He treats all of his customers the same, regardless of how much, or how little, they have to spend.  He absolutely will tell you what your horse can and can't do, and will send it home, or help you sell it, if he feels it can't do the job.  He has a keen eye for good horses, and can match people to their perfect mount.  Soundness is of the utmost importance to him, and he doesn't take shortcuts.  His stable is organized and efficient, and he is not one to waste his client's money.  He has a excellent, well-deserved reputation, and I have never heard anyone say anything bad about him, because he consistently keeps it professional.

I started riding with Lee when I was a pre-teen, and stayed with him until I went to college.  Riding with Lee was wonderful; he never lost his patience and wasn't ever the kind of trainer to yell or belittle or intimidate - which can be just crushing to a teenager.  At the same time, he wasn't flowery with his praise or over the top with his compliments; in fact, he isn't one to blow sunshine all the time, which makes you really want to ride better for him.  A compliment from him was really worth something to me.  I can honestly say that riding with him shaped me as a person and as a trainer/instructor.  He still is an example to me of what a good trainer is like and how they should treat both people and horses. 

Nowadays, horse trainers with DVDs, million dollar earnings, gimmicks and big names get lots of attention, but I think people are beginning to see that those things don't necessarily make a really good trainer, nor do they make for someone that you want to do business with.  There are plenty of great trainers out there who are more than just flash and bling.  I feel so lucky to have learned the difference early in life, and Lee Mancini was the trainer who taught me that.  Please check out his website here, and if you already know Lee, please leave a comment here, and help me sing his praises.

Have a wonderful day!

1 comment:

  1. What a lovely tribute. I just looked at Lee's website - thank you for bringing him to my attention!