In case you haven’t heard the news, Trinity Farm is the place to be October 29 and 30. That’s when we–in conjunction with Horses LTD–will be hosting the Michael Zukerman clinic. And the best part is? It’s open to anyone who wants to participate–regardless of jump height, show status, or rider experience. All you have to do is sign-up and choose your level of participation.

Since the announcement several weeks ago, there have been several common questions circulating around. So we’d like to go ahead and address the most of them (but if you still have questions, please let us know!).

So… without further ado…

The FAQs of Michael Zukerman’s Clinic

Mike on board Denmark at the Old Salem Farm Hunter Derby.

Photo Credit: SEL Photography

I’ve never heard of Michael Zukerman. Who he is? And what does he have to offer?

Mike and his family live on Long Island in New York. They’re the owners and operators of Lynnwood Stables, a full service Hunter/Jumper barn on Long Island. Mike is both a professional rider and an instructor. He has ridden in Grand Prixes and in the High Performance Working Hunters all the way down to the Baby Greens and Young Jumpers, and instructs various riders through those same levels.

Mike likes to work with his riders to ensure that they each have a plan and set goals for the future. He strives to build a solid foundation for both rider and horse, ensuring each confidence in their abilities.

In the winter time, Mike and his students spend their time at the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) in Florida, competing.

Recently (October 2, 2016), Mike won the Old Salem Farm Hunter Derby (on field) with a client’s horse.

Fun fact: Mary Mielenz’s horse, Lacoste, came from Lynnewood Stables.

There are lots of clinicians to choose from. Why Mike?

For our first clinic, we wanted a clinician who wasn’t locked into a rigid teaching format and can be more fluid based on horse/rider combos. Our goal is for each rider to gain as much personalized feedback as possible. Mike was happy to step-in, based on that criteria.

There are two types of clinic sessions. Can you explain the difference?

2 Hour Session ($350)

The two hour session will have a small group (exceeding no more than six riders) of similarly-skilled rider/horses pairs. For example, if a horse/rider pair are currently jumping and showing at 3’6” or over, they would be placed with other rider/horses jumping the same height. These session will be more physically demanding and will focus on very specific technical aspects of the sport, whether it’s through flatwork, polework, or jumping. By keeping the class smaller, each rider can have personalized feedback and one-on-one time.

1.5 Hour Session ($250)

The one-and-a-half hour session will consist of a larger group (more than six riders) and will have a mixture of rider/horse skills. Ideally, we would like to have at least two groups, so we don’t have an extreme imbalance of skill (experienced 3” rider with someone tackling just polework). However, that depends upon enrollment. This session will likely feature lots of flatwork, combined with poles and gridwork to tackle specific aspects (i.e. cadence, impulsion, and rider form, to name a few). While this will be more strenuous than a lesson, it won’t be as stringent as the two hour session. Even though there is a larger rider field, we still want individualized feedback for each rider.

Regardless of either session type, we want everyone to feel relaxed, confident, and encouraged to tackle a new skill with a new instructor. So classes may be structured differently than other clinics.

Mike on board Mario at Lake Placid in 2004.

Photo Credit: Lynnewood Stables

Do I have to ride to participate in the clinic?

Absolutely not! If you don’t feel up to riding, you don’t have to miss out. You can audit the clinic for $25 a day or $40 for both days. To audit the clinic, fill out the sign-up form and choose the audit option.

Is the clinic only for Trinity Farm & Horses LTD riders? Or can anyone participate?

The clinic is open to riders of all Hunter/Jumper barns in the area. Just fill out the sign-up form.

We don’t have enough space to keep horses overnight; so riders from other barns will need to haul in and out each day. There’s plenty of spaces to park trailers.

Mike on board Koala at WEF 2015.

Photo Credit: Lynnewood Stables

What time does the clinic start each day?

Right now, the start time has yet to be determined. Once we finalize the schedule, we’ll send out an email to all the participants with more details. We’ll also post the information on our Facebook page as well.

What else can you tell me about the clinic?

Lunch will be catered for all the participants (both riders and auditors). To ensure that everyone can hear what Mike’s saying, we will be renting a PA system from Pegasus Productions.

Above all, we want everyone to enjoy their time at the clinic. This is a fun, relaxed environment to learn from someone who’s been there and done that and has something to impart on each rider, whether you’re on a horse or not.