Thank you to these gracious Trainers for stepping up to be part of an amazing, meaningful competition in Appalachia.
Trainers are able to apply through April 15th to be one of 20 men and women chosen to compete in the 3rd year of the Appalachian Trainer Face Off, sponsored by a grant from the ASPCA and support of Buckeye Feeds.
The 20 trainers chosen to compete will be judges in 2019 by:
“Josh Lyons grew up learning from “The World’s Most Trusted Horseman”, his father, John Lyons.
Having this foundation and continuing to grow the legacy, Josh has developed proven methods used world-wide.
“I was born to become a horse trainer, of that fact, I am sure. I have always been most content and at ease around anything equine and since the age of twelve, I knew there would be horses in my life forever.
I grew up in Toronto, Canada without nearly enough access to my passion, and so I read, and by saying the word “read,” I mean every single thing I could get my hands on that had any information from which I might glean another tidbit about horses. Every fictional story or how-to book in both the school and the local library on the subject of horses was eagerly read at least once. All of this information gathering was before the internet and therefore, harder to come by, back in the early seventies.
A trip to my local feed store proved me wrong and changed my life. I found a copy of Alois Podhasky’s complete training of horse and rider in the bargain bin, and I stayed up all that night to finish reading my first real dressage book. I learned that I, in fact, did not, invent dressage. However, dressage would be my next calling and I began studying in earnest both the discipline and the art form, that is dressage.
Busy as I was, I rather selfishly took a position at the Arabian Nights Dinner theater in Orlando, Florida, because I wanted a chance to ride and learn from the horses there. I was part of the show for a little over five years. I met and married my husband, Kim, there, became the principal trainer, a feature performer in the show, and eventually the Director of Entertainment Operations.
Kim and I then decided it was time to let show business take a back seat to our dressage aspirations, and we accepted a position as head trainers for Bob Oury at Indian Hills training Center in Gilberts, Illinois. There, we started training and competing dressage horses in earnest. We had over sixty horses on the farm to break, train, and sell, along with four rather unruly stallions to sort out. During this period, KYB Dressage was born.
Since then, we have imported some fabulous and award-winning show horses for a variety of clients. We have qualified horses and riders for World Championships and World Cups. Dozens of National and Regional titles have been earned by horses and by riders under our guidance.
The books I have written, Ride the Right Horse, The Dressage Horse Manifesto, The Spirit of the Horse and All the Kings Horsemen, are a reflection of what I have learned over these many years studying my equine friends and the people who work with them. I am a horse trainer, first and foremost. I love my life, my family and the horses I get to work with and am blessed to have the people in my life who believe in me.
As a horse crazy child, I would have given anything to have someone extend a hand to help me, and I have never forgotten my roots. I now extend my hand to help young professionals and aspiring riders find their chance to be around horses and to discover for themselves if their life calling is the pursuit of hoof prints in the sand.”
“I grew up in High Point, North Carolina and found my passion for the horse at age sixteen. Today I spend my time riding horses for the public in Paris, Kentucky as well as traveling around the country teaching clinics. My journey began with a desire to fill what I thought was a basic need, yet evolved into a love of working with horses. As I figured out a thing or two, I learned how much I loved not only educating horses but people as well. It is truly an honor to work with each one of you and your horses and I look forward to the day we get to ride together.
My journey began as a stable hand at a local Hunter Jumper equestrian facility. There I learned the basic of caring for horses and riding, then spent the next four summers traveling the East Coast and to Canada with Arabian/Half Arabian trainer, Rick Gault. From hauling trailers across the country to learning what it means to get to know a horse as an individual, my time with RGT prepared me with the knowledge and ability to take care of any horse just as if they too are a national champion.
During the regular academic year I spent many hours volunteering for Safe Haven Equine Rescue and Retirement. It was there that I found my passion not just for the horse, but the lifestyle of horsemanship. There was a need to help educate these horses so they could find their forever home and I set out on a mission to further my horsemanship to help them. Little did I realize this was the beginning to the journey I would dedicate my life to. Early on I did not know who to look to for guidance so I spent many hours learning from the horses in a round pen. Several months later I stumbled across a style of horsemanship that captivated and spoke to my soul.
It was a Vaquero and Buckaroo style horsemanship that caught my eye but went far beyond just horses. This horsemanship was brought to us by horseman Tom Dorrance, spread across this great country by Ray Hunt and introduced to me by Buck Brannaman. In pursuit of furthering my understanding, I was selected to spend several weeks with horseman Kip Fladland courtesy of the Legacy of Legends Scholarship program. The LoL program was founded by Buck and Carolyn Hunt to help young aspiring horsemen have the opportunity to spend time learning from those who have dedicated their lives to living out and teaching the principals Tom and Ray dedicated their lives to.
While riding horses for the pubic after class, I pursued my collegiate education at the University of Kentucky earning a B.S. in Equine Science and Management and a minor in Agricultural Economics. Following graduation I spent the next year and a half traveling the country assisting in the teaching of clinics and private lessons, education of horses in training as well as handling the business administration duties. Forever grateful for the horses that taught me so much and the friendships made along this part in the journey, it became time to return to the horsemanship I value so much and to learn from the best teacher of all: the horse.
Today I am humbled to have the opportunity to live out my life as a full time student of the horse and to share the journey with each of you. We look forward to one day having a home and ranch where we can welcome each one of you and share part of my dream to have enough land that one could not hit the fence line after a full day’s riding. “