In which we prep for endurance season by stuffing our heads (and mouths)

One of the lovely things about the Green Bean movement is an upsurge of
interest in Endurance 101 clinics.

A good excuse to stay indoors in February:  learning!

Doctor Susan Garlinghouse led a two-day course of instruction last weekend at Griffinwood Stable in Olympia, WA.

Dr G talks a *lot* with her hands.
Here's one of the only pictures we took of her when
she doesn't appear to be Warding Off Attack Owls.

Unlike most of my more-informal Q-and-A clinics (which usually take place in the shade of somebody's rig the day before a ride), Dr G's sessions include Powerpoints and lots and lots of research, punctuated by hilarious stories and sharply pointed anecdotes of Things Gone Horribly Wrong.

Rapt audience: Brains On Fire
 We followed the brain workout with lots of Real-World Practice.

Mary K talks about crew bags and what she puts in them

Including a Practice Vet Check

Maria and Eve learn proper trot-out technique in a no-pressure environment

 and a Practice Ride!

A 3.5 mile loop, followed by a vetcheck and 20 minute hold,
and then a repeat of the 3.5 mile loop.

Some experienced riders escorted Green Bean horses and riders through the process.

Heading out: a nice quiet start line

Since we weren't keeping track of finish times and weren't giving "placings,"
we opted for a staggered start to keep the excitement down

Val and Sage returned quietly at the end of the loop, just as Dr. G taught!

Some riders borrowed horses so they could see the trail.

Eileen wanted to try riding a gaited horse, so Amy loaned out the beautiful Kate.
Bobbi's horse stayed home, so she took Duracell the stick pony out for a loop.
 Those of us without horses at the event practiced new roles and skills.

Santa Jim was the "ride manager" for the event, with me as assistant

Duana wanted to learn the use of her brand-new bright orange stethoscope.
Turns out that Rosemary isn't dead, but her heart isn't very loud.

Dr. G gave a tutorial on parts of the steth

Janice and Anne-Marie figure out how this pulsing thing works

Fashion is never an obstacle:  Patty got to be the timer for our event.

Endurance peeps are good at eating, and the food was plentiful!
HINT: Dr. G is a complete sucker for good eats.
If you want to lure her to your event, you might mention food.

It's rare to see Gretta out of the saddle, but she was an outstanding
helper-monkey on the ground all weekend!

When all the riders were back in camp, Duracell demonstrated the Best Condition exam.

Dr. G talked about the reasoning behind each part of the BC exam.

Duracell was deemed very sound.  The rider in the purple shirt, slightly less so.

Santa Jim launched his new business venture:

Selling stuff we all need

Closeup of the store.  His inventory includes copies of Endurance 101 and some
of Monica's Understory Shirts, as well as tiny flashlights that will wrap around
your tack, solar chargers for your phone, and brightly-colored stethoscopes.
 Stay tuned for news about Jim's wares available online.  We're still trying to figure out a name...any ideas?

At the end of the weekend, the riders were given completion awards.

A Useful Completion Award:
a tiny wrap-around flashlight with a custom logo applied.

On the way out the gate, one of the new riders told event organizer Anne-Marie that she "thought she could probably do this thing!"

Sweet words.  Sweet words indeed.

So, readers:  who wants a clinic?

Dr G and Anne-Marie and I are all on the AERC Education Committee, and we're determined to get new riders the information they want and need.  Send me a note or leave a comment.  We are paying attention!

And that is, of course, Good.


  1. I love seeing how many of the E101 clinics are happening and the positive feedback coming out of them...may it result in new, successful members! I kind of like the descriptor of "selling stuff you need" as a store name..."Stuff You Need". Too vague?

    (See you next week, Aarene!!)

  2. How about 'Santa Jim's Necessaries'? Or does that sound too much like a fancy underwear boutique?

  3. How about Rider Wares. The place where riders go to get the stuff they need.

  4. Wonderful post about how it all went. Wish I could have attended! Is there any video of Dr G's talks by chance??


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