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Ask Sharon — Training


Learn to enjoy the journey; life is a series of completed processes that interlock for success.

—Sharon Camarillo






BARREL RACING PERFORMANCE EVALUATION

For Sharon Camarillo Clinic students, we offer an online video performance evaluation service. Post your competitive or practice runs on YouTube , we will evaluate your performance and Email you a report, including a customized training plan for improvement. Please contact us for pricing and to arrange this service!




In order to study horsemanship one needs an attitude of compassion, awareness, patience, forgiveness and confidence.

—Sharon Camarillo



Victoria from California

Posted by sharoncamarillo Admin on

Dear Sharon, I am a 14 year-old girl and have always dreamed of being a professional barrel racer. In the arena, my horse is having some trouble under the bit. My horse seems to do better with a gag snaffle, but I am not sure what I should be using. Would you have any suggestions to help me better control my horse when racing? Dear Victoria, Success begins in the practice arena, not the competition arena. Be sure your horse is controllable in his comfortable environment before subjecting him to the additional stress and stimulation of competition. Unfamiliar noises, large...

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Tanya from New Mexico

Posted by sharoncamarillo Admin on

Dear Sharon, I grew up riding under a Grand Prix dressage rider/trainer who competed in the Olympic Trials while I was one of her students. I have felt fortunate for the years of experience I had riding under her as I have continued to ride and train in other disciplines. However, in recent years, I started working with young barrel horses and was told by a well-respected local trainer that the fundamentals of dressage and collection have no place in the training of barrel horses. He was very clear on this point – no place at all – and, in...

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Mandy from Texas

Posted by sharoncamarillo Admin on

Dear Sharon, I have a copy of The A.R.T. of Barrel Racing, but loaned it out and have not gotten it back yet. Could you give me a daily workout plan for my horse? I want to get started right away. Thank you so much. Dear Mandy, Thanks for your letter of inquiry regarding a daily conditioning workout program. I am a firm believer that conditioning is important to keeping any performance horse sound. Unfortunately, many of us do not prioritize conditioning, resulting in strained tendons, ligaments and muscle soreness. Also keep in mind that balanced connected riding while doing...

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Heather from Alabama

Posted by sharoncamarillo Admin on

Dear Sharon, I have a seven year-old Quarter horse mare I am teaching to barrel race. I can’t get her to lope on the course. I’ve tried spurs, over and under, whip, nudging and squeezing with my legs. Nothing seems to work. What can I do to get her to run? Dear Heather, Thank you for your question. You mention that your horse won’t lope on course. I interpret that to mean she will lope when you are not on the barrel pattern. First, let’s review that spurs are not for making your horse move forward. Spurs are for assisting...

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Emma from Nebraska

Posted by sharoncamarillo Admin on

Dear Sharon, I want to teach my young Quarter horse how to barrel race. Could you give me some advice on how to make him the best he can be? Dear Emma, Thank you for your question about your young horse. I think the best thing you can do for your horse is to be sure that he has a great foundation before you introduce him to the barrel pattern. Your young horse needs to be able to walk, trot and canter easily and maintain his rhythm in all gaits. The youngster needs to be able to lope circles and...

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