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The Strong Man Stumbles

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat. 
- Theodore Roosevelt

"It's not nice to do to well"?

If it's the same Randy Byers I've run into (a real nice guy, graying goatee beard, does clinics, is a Josh/John Lyons certified trainer) then he's a ****ed good trainer. 

If it's the same person, I would tend to chalk up any bad reviews to someone who didn't follow through with or didn't learn to follow through and reinforce/maintain what the trainer taught the person to do with their horse. Then there's the cases where other trainers try to drum up business by casting aspersions on their competition. Who was it, Joseph Campbell who said, "It's not nice to do to well"?

I wouldn't let one bad review affect any decision. If you like the trainer and he does good work, then hang onto that trainer or go with him.

The Truth is in the Horse!

“Let's be perfectly frank and honest with ourselves regarding our relationship with any horse.  When you finish your ride and you get down from the saddle, it isn't the people who watched you ride, the officials at some event or exhibition who have any right to judge you. The real thing that matters, the true judge of your ability as a horseman is standing next to you. It is the horse who will tell you by his expression, his body and the look in his eye if you helped him, if you showed him how he can be better and if you have a partner in this dance.” JSR
I want to buy a dressage horse

I Want to Buy a Dressage Horse!

I can so relate to this.. LOL

It Works!

What value does Western Dressage bring to the table?

Have you ever had one of those days when you had an eye opening moment? Last month when I was coaching Cheryl Haaren at a Western Dressage show, I heard Cheryl say, "It really works!"

What prompted that expression of joy? First, you need to know something about this 12 year old Appy trail horse. This guy is kind, friendly and, has a big heart, but he needs lots of leadership because he has lots of instinctual fears.

It is very typical for Dunbar to be on the muscle and worried about the smallest things crawling on the ground. I told Cheryl to "trust the training". As you can see in the picture, he was in a new place, settled in nicely and showed some relaxation. This was Cheryl's second show and I am happy to say she picked up  a 1st and 2nd place with scores in the mid to high 60s.

Letter from Moshi by Jane Sovoie

I love this article by Jane Savoie, I think you will too. This is an unauthorized reprint, all rights and appreciation goes to Jane Savoie.
There are strong leaders, passive leaders, dictators, feckless guides, and bullies. What kind of leader are you?

Horses appreciate a good leader. We may challenge you now and then, but we hope you're strong enough to stand up to our testing. There are very few of us who really want to be the leader. We want YOU to lead and be in charge of keeping us safe. We relax when we're confident that you're taking responsibility for the both of us.

Being the leader can be tough for some people. Some humans think it's "mean" to take charge. They think they're being kind by letting us make our own decisions. This isn't how horses think. If we have confidence in your strong leadership, we allow ourselves to relax. If you don't take charge, most of us will. We'll look for things to be wary of, which often results in spooking. If we're the ones left in charge, we expect you to be nothing but a passenger. We may still like you, but we also lose respect for you.

One of the ways you let us know that you're in charge is by moving our feet. In horse language, he who moves the other guy's feet is the boss. It's that simple. Just by taking the leadrope and asking us to step sideways a few steps, take a few steps backward, and then move out forward, you let us know that you're in charge. Just remember that you have to be in charge when you get on our backs, too!

Are you a good leader for your horse? Do you have the tools you need to remind your horse that he is safe with you in charge? Be fair, but be firm. Be a good, clear guide. Your horse won't resent your leadership. In fact, he craves it.

Love, Moshi

  Jane Savoie


Welcome to Summer

Welcome to  Summer, "yeah right!" Not here in the Northwest. I hope all is going well in your world.

Sorry, I have not been in touch with you guys with more newsletters, but I have been extremely busy with Carbon, clients showing, and building training material to help with Western Dressage. This new sport is growing like mad here in the NW. I love this new sport because it really is an effective way of building a nice safe western horse. Carbon and I have been working hard with our clients to show the value of using dressage concepts and the use of the aids to influence control. The dressage judges have helped me and my clients to gain more confidence in our ability with our horses. That was a huge unexpected result of showing in the Dressage court.

How do you measure your development? Humbly I can say, with out a doubt, I totally underestimated the value of the Dressage testing. I put my ego aside and allowed dressage judges to look at my riding style and make comments. Why did I open myself up to this type of abuse? There are two reasons why I started showing: 1) to get a better grasp of what is expected in training Western Dressage. I knew that if I am going to be an effective teacher of Western Dressage, I need to get out there and learn what I need to learn to be more effective. 2) I needed some type of validation that I was or was not on the right track with my personal development. What I learned was totally unexpected!  My experience in the dressage court has been invaluable. I now know what is expected and involved with testing. The key is to transition the judges comments to make the needed changes back home after the show. This experience has opened up my eyes to things I have never seen before. Both me and my clients have seen steady, measurable progress and improved scores. This directly translates to being a better horseman. 

How can you benefit from what I have learned? I went back to the drawing board. In the last newsletter a few months ago, I announced the launch of the latest technology in website design. I knew at that time I needed a new innovative platform to help build this new discipline. Video and interactive media is a great way to get help. If you have not been to my website in the last month, you will be shocked at how much content I have added. I redefined my mission, added a video archive with over 30 never seen videos, most taken from a clinic in MN, I added a file download section that contains all my latest videos, and finally, I launched an online educational study program filled with video and diagrams.This online class is a step-by-step program that is taken right from my popular iPhone apps. This program starts with ground work and as I have time, I will be adding many more lessons that will lead to a finished "Western Dressage Bridle Horse". But that is not all, I have more ideas and concepts I will be adding as we develop this new state of the art innovative platform.

There is lots to see at my new website, you can spend literally hours looking at all the new videos. Hope to see you over there and let me know how I can help develop you and your horse for Western Dressage.


Written on 06/05/2012, 00:18 by admin
elaine-ward-excellent-demo-randyElaine Ward replied to Neide C Cooley's discussion "Ontario, Canada WD Enthusiasts" on Western Dressage Association™ of America------------This weekend Randy Byers is conducting a WD clinic near Woodstock Ontario. Last night about 50 people were in attendance for a BBQ and Demonstration by both...
Written on 28/08/2012, 16:01 by admin
you-carbon-are-wonderful-ambassadorsErika Culmann You & Carbon are wonderful ambassadors for a growing sport. CTDS wants to do our part in helping it flourish.
Written on 17/09/2012, 21:52 by admin
waste-no-time-on-the-negative-aspects   Robison Ranch Hi Randy, I have been watching your posts for a bit. They interest me because there is a common thread in horses and training. You also attract people who call you an abuser. As I gain more success and popularity in my community, I attract more critics too. A few women...
Written on 05/05/2012, 23:32 by admin
we-really-needed-to-get-over-the-humpLor Myers When you worked Xerxes the first few times, that was a break through point for him. We really needed to get over the hump of Xerxes being a GREEN horse into a horse that is actually working properly. We really needed that so we could start progressing. We did a month of full training then a...
Written on 15/02/2013, 20:14 by admin
it-is-a-dream-job-i-truly-learned-so-much Nadine Spiker It is a dream job! I truly learned so much. thankful for the opportunity and wish I could stay but so glad I was able to help. Thank you Randy, you are a great guy to hang with and I'm glad we are friends.
Written on 25/11/2012, 13:06 by admin
it-was-the-best-decision-i-have-ever-made     Carol Lewis Franklin   Hi Randy,I love seeing that huge smile on your face in the pictures from all the WD tests you and Carbon are doing.I have been watching a lot of HRTV and had people give me DVD's from different trainers to watch. I have to tell you that as I...
Written on 14/05/2012, 00:48 by admin
his-demo-on-his-horse-carbon-was-downright-beautiful Lisa wrote: "What is really cool about it is that its a meld of both dressage and western whereby you get the western horse who can stand quietly, not get easily spooked and have phenomal ground work combined with a connected dressage horse that is engaged and the body parts...
Written on 05/05/2012, 23:48 by admin
western-dressage-seems-like-a-good-fitEmmy Luepke This is a picture of myself on my horse: Celtic Smoking After Midnight, barn name: Smokey. We attended the Randy Byers Western Dressage clinic at Miller Stables in Tyler, MN. It was great! I have a lot of work to do, and change of tack, but I atleast have a place to start. I am really...
Written on 05/05/2012, 23:58 by admin
people-are-crazyHey Randy just wanted to say thanks yesterdays training was great i had a good day. I appreciate the encouragement and patience, people are crazy.~ Joe Bird
Written on 05/05/2012, 01:54 by admin
dawne-and-dexterDawne Shaughnessy-Mudford Dexter is a 5 year old Thoroughbred/Paint cross that came into my life just over a year ago. After owing and riding horses for 25 years I thought I could tackle a youngster.Wow was I in for a surprise.I love him with all my heart but I didn't get him to just use as a lawn...
Written on 05/05/2012, 23:53 by admin
he-gives-way-more-than-he-receivesThis is my awesome horse Lyric. He was a bucking bronco until Randy turned him around for me. Now he is my trustworthy partner. I support Randy as an outstanding trainer. I have known him for several years,I know many horses and people that he has worked with and have seen him give WAY more than he...
Written on 06/05/2012, 00:40 by admin
a-true-testament-to-good-trainingThank you Randy for a great clinic and extravaganza! I didn't get to watch anywhere near as much as I would have liked, but I took away a lot of knowledge from the parts I did see. I really have a lot of respect for how you conduct your clinics and love the wealth of information and how you clarify your...
Written on 15/02/2013, 20:14 by admin
this-would-be-a-great-opportunity-for-an-up-and-coming-trainer Terri Lynn Jordan I checked into this. This would be a great opportunity for an up and coming trainer who needs to learn about dedication to the business and putting the horse first. I personally have "been there done that" with another person and it was a huge help in my awareness and a...
Written on 05/05/2012, 23:17 by admin
you-go-the-extra-step-and-show-peopleRandy, I am so impressed with your training meathods. But in my situation it would only be a forever dream.Your intelect & how you train people to be better horsemen/women. Not just help with the horse & walk away. People need to know what you do, before they walk away and just say "Randy Byers...
Written on 17/02/2013, 09:47 by admin
finally-a-trainer-in-western-dressageKay Lodahl  Finally!! A trainer in Western Dressage. This is the most comprehensive information I have yet to find on this topic! Very well done, informative and inspiring.. Thank you for all you put into these videos...
Written on 28/08/2012, 16:05 by admin
thank-you-for-promoting-dressageTina Zehnder Having ridden western for twenty years, I can appreciate how much dressage could have helped my western riding. Thank you for promoting dressage for the western riders.
Written on 01/06/2012, 12:46 by admin
you-and-carbon-are-fluidity-in-motionCandace Jasmine Ferrari: I love watching you and your refined style,You have inspired me to go beyond barrel racing, reined cowhorse and roping,.Thank God for trainers like you.. You and Carbon are fluidity in motion..
Written on 11/03/2013, 08:47 by admin
they-are-both-fantastic-ambassadors-to-this-evolving-sportSherri Patterson Wow, I personally love schooling shows and Topsider Farm is great. I did not have a chance to meet Randy or talk to him, but my husband and I were at this show and I can tell you that he has done a phenomenal job with Carbon. I can also tell you that there was silence at the show...
Written on 05/05/2012, 01:01 by admin
it-s-not-nice-to-do-to-well I had a private lesson with Randy Byers and in two hours he managed to get my mare on the vertical and softer than ever, I've been working towards this goal for over 2 years with my regular trainer but my mare has never been consistant.Has anyone ever sent a horse to him for training? I...
Written on 05/05/2012, 01:41 by admin
you-ll-be-so-proud-of-romeStéphanie Lorette Thank you for the nice comments everyone! I absolutely adore this stallion! Randy, he's doing amazing! We rode with Marci Case-Brown this past weekend and had him in the double bridle, doing canter pirouettes!!!! We'll be posting video on our website later this week!...
Written on 05/05/2012, 23:40 by admin
when-you-collect-your-horse-you-collect-their-mindGreta Liubakka OK... it was a long time coming, but here it is. I have owned my Quarter/Morgan cross, Duelli for over 10 years… He is now 14. A few years ago, Duelli and I had a bad accident. The details of the accident aren’t important – the accident was 99.9% my fault (they usually are)… Long story...
Written on 23/05/2013, 22:19 by admin
an-awesome-sight-to-behold Earlene Lorts  I was introduced to Working Equitation this weekend at the show. Had a great time! Fun and challenging. Made some new friends and learned more about Western Dressage - Kudos to Randy and Carbon for taking 1st Place with their 2nd Level Dressage test - an awesome sight to behold -...
Written on 05/05/2012, 01:36 by admin
bcs-smashing-sucessAlex MacRae  BCS Smashing Sucess (CodY) was shown alot as a 2 & 3 yr old. He is well trained and because I didn't spend enough time riding him he lost his work ethic and I think he was bored of doing work in the arena.....Randy showed me a new way of asking for a change of gait that would take...
Written on 05/05/2012, 01:31 by admin
she-was-golden-absolutely-perfectYesterday was a big day for Firsts... Lisa had her inaugural ride on our Show Mare, MS Sasha. Randy started working with her 3 weeks ago to get her started under saddle. I was so thrilled... She was GOLDEN, absolutely perfect! Thanks Randy!!
Written on 05/05/2012, 23:11 by admin
she-was-supposed-to-be-for-my-husbandCheryl Haaren She has turned out to be an awesome girl! She did so well at Mt Adams this last summer with all the blown down trees and some not so perfect terrain. She was supposed to be for my husband, but I think she is mine!
Written on 21/05/2013, 00:35 by admin
what-more-could-you-ask-from-a-bossKaylin Wright So I'm sitting here thinkin about a million and one things quiet literally... Rethinking about some of the conversations we had at work today and I would just like to let everyone know I have one of the best bosses ever. Not only does Randy have an amazing gift with horses, he...
Written on 05/05/2012, 23:24 by admin
you-gave-us-a-better-partnershipCarol Lewis Franklin  Thank You Randy,YES i love her so much. She is my sanity. Dazzle is a 20 yr old Standardbred Mare, retired pacer. I have had her fir 3 years. i'm not quite sure how to say she helped me with horsemanship, she has helped me grow as a person, riding her and spending time...
Written on 30/09/2012, 15:41 by admin
nice-suspension-and-movement-from-behindWendye wrote: "You were beautiful, I got to see you last weekend and was very impressed, just nice suspension and movement from behind, looked smooth and fun!"
Written on 17/02/2013, 09:47 by admin
these-horses-leave-you-with-a-new-purpose-in-lifeSonia Richardson Randy, it does not matter what a low life cyber bullie thinks as long as you respect yourself and the animals you work with. These horses leave you with a new purpose in life not to be left out in the cold unwanted and unfed. You have trained them for a winning job and their owners...
Written on 09/08/2013, 19:29 by admin
i-love-this-horseMark Patterson I have seen this pair in action and this is well deserved. I love this horse! I wish it was me on him.
Written on 05/05/2012, 01:15 by admin
was-it-great-for-fiona"I think I demonstrated that when I whole-heartedly jumped in and did everything Randy told me to do at the clinic - much of which was totally counter to what I had been learning in classical dressage.  And, did I learn a TON?  YES!  Was it great for Fiona?  YES!  Will I...
Written on 05/08/2013, 17:07 by admin
you-are-an-inspiration-to-meCarol Westphal DettloffWhat an amazing team. You are an inspiration to me. Funny I really don't even know you but you make me get out and work my horse.
Written on 05/08/2013, 17:16 by admin
i-truly-appreciate-his-dedicationJayne LloydRandy is a great horseman I truly appreciate his dedication
Written on 20/04/2014, 16:13 by admin
once-again-my-brain-is-friedDianne wrote: "Thank you Horseshoe Ranch, Randy Byers for another day of training. Everyone had a great time & enjoyed the beautiful weather, the amazing hospitality and the expert instruction. Once again, my brain is fried!
Written on 18/02/2013, 21:15 by admin
i-saw-your-article-next-to-mine-in-just-horses-magDanica Yates Randy, I saw your article next to mine in Just Horses Mag and just watched your video on rearing- love it. Super teaching on a difficult subject and well presented I thought.
Written on 26/01/2013, 10:33 by admin
getting-to-see-the-tests-with-scores-and-comments-is-a-huge-help-in-educating-myselfMindy Lee Roland Thank you. I found your website looking for western dressage videos. I am very interested in WD and have been trying to learn as much as I can so your site was very helpful. I would like to eventually try it with some of our horses.  Just wanted to thank you for putting up...
Written on 05/08/2013, 17:01 by admin
carbon-are-amazing Marci Harnden  Randy gave me some excellent lessons on Two Hearts, he and Carbon are amazing.
Written on 01/01/2014, 11:57 by admin
i-am-so-happy-i-found-you-your-methods-are-working-fabulously-for-meDana D Kesselringthanks Randy for all your help in the year 2013, I have to tell you that you have given me whole new feeling about my horse training, I am so happy I found you, your methods are working fabulously for me, thank you so much and I look forward the 2014 and all I have to learn from your...
Written on 09/08/2013, 19:32 by admin
it-was-a-pleasure-meeting-you-and-your-amazing-horse-this-weekend Heather C. Hayes It was a pleasure meeting you and your amazing horse this weekend! Thanks for letting me get on him! Hope to see ya at the next show! (And why are we awake?!? Horse people are insane!)
Written on 15/02/2013, 20:14 by admin
an-u-just-make-me-smile-an-then-u-can-even-bring-tears-to-my-eyes Darla Strickland   I've been around horses from the when I was a baby my grandpa an dad had plow horses an my uncle had an brother had just ridin horses I guess u can say .. An yea if u haven't figured it out yet I'm just a country redneck girl rasin a ten yr boy ... An when I saw u...