This is a formal complaint that i have filed against: “jessica santiago,” “ head-trainer” at: “fourth ‘n goal training” in anderson, sc. I have filed this report, because jessica santiago is a fraud on all levels. She is posing as a knowledgeable, professional horse trainer, and nothing could be farther from the truth. Jessica is a self-taught, “yahoo,” backyard-type rider, whom herself does not even possess basic “beginner-level”riding skills. Someone who cannot ride correctly themselves has absolutely no business “teaching” others how to ride. She is obviously “teaching” ignorant beginners, who do not know any better, because any experienced rider would take one lesson from jessica and run for the hills! she is essentially stealing the hard-earned money of ignorant beginners. That is fraud, and it makes me very angry. These people are paying good money to learn how to ride correctly, and jessica is teaching them all incorrectly. Is it not important, that the teacher possess the same skills they are attempting to teach? How can someone who cannot ride correctly themselves, teach someone else to ride correctly? It cannot be done! she is a fraud on every level, and i worry for the safety of any student that she “teaches.” basic fundamentals of a correct riding position, help to keep the rider more secure, Safe) when sitting astride a horse. An example of this, would be keeping one’s heels down when riding. Having a “secure leg,” Having your heels down) is probably the most important element of any type of riding. Whether you are a rider in competing at the rolex, or out for a relaxing trail-ride, all riders should have their heels down at all times. As you will see in almost all of her photos, jessica santiago rides with her heels up and not down. If she cannot correctly exhibit the first basic fundamental riding skills, then she has no right to “teach” anyone how to ride a horse. I have been in the horse business for over 35 years, and was privileged enough to be a horse show judge for many of those years. I have frequently judged many “equitation” classes, which places primary focus on the rider’s riding position. I guess this is why jessica’s terrible riding position bothers me so much.) i have never seen any “professional” rider ride as incorrectly as jessica santiago. I have taken the liberty of correcting her riding position, in the photos that she has posted of herself on her websites. She is so unknowledgeable, in-fact, that she doesn’t even know to be embarrassed of how incorrectly she rides. A picture is worth a thousand words, and i have many photos to prove my point. Ask any true professional rider, and they will all agree with my analysis. My problem with jessica santiago, began when i attended a horse show at garrison arena near clemson, s.C. After arriving, i immediately noticed a woman with dark hair, riding a large palomino gelding. I could see that she was struggling to ride, even though the big gelding seemed like a patient horse. The woman’s riding position, Aka “equitation”) was very poor. Her stirrups were too short, her heels were up, her leg was too far back, she was “perching” in the saddle, her reins were far too long, and so on. At first glance, i thought nothing of it; just another “bad” amateur rider at an open horse show. As i watched the dark-haired woman struggle to ride, i noticed that a small blonde girl was trying to give the “bad rider” some riding tips. No matter how hard she tried, the dark-haired girl just couldn’t get it. I thought to myself, “poor thing, she has no talent for riding.” i thought her to be a beginning adult rider, and thought nothing else of it. It wasn’t until a few hours later, that i noticed this same dark-haired girl That i had thought was a beginner) in the practice arena, appearing to give a riding lesson. I sat by the fence, and listened to the bad-riding- dark-haired woman give a “riding lesson” to a thin red-headed little girl. As i listened, i became very concerned. All the things the woman was telling the little girl, were incorrect. At that time, my interest was certainly peaked. I thought to myself, “who is this bad-riding-dark-haired woman giving the incorrect riding lesson?”so, i decided to find-out her name, so that i might know who the ignorant woman was. I asked a friend of mine, from the local feed store, and she told me that the dark-haired woman giving the incorrect riding lesson, was a “professional” trainer by the name of: “jessica santiago.” she said that jessica was “head-trainer, at fourth ‘n goal training in anderson.” shocked by her response, i responded to my friend with: “she is a professional?! she can’t even keep her heels down!” my friend snickered, and replied: “these days, anyone can call themselves a professional.” i was horrified by the fact that this woman, Who could barely ride herself) was giving riding lessons, to a child who did not know that she was being taught incorrectly. This ignorance angered me so much, that i decided to introduce myself to “jessica santiago,” and see where things would lead. I approached her, and she seemed friendly enough at the time. The small blonde girl came over about that same time, and introduced herself as “meredith.” meredith introduced herself as the “assistant trainer,” at fourth ‘n goal training. I will say, that meredith seems to be a fairly good rider. I’m not exactly sure why she is linked-up with jessica, who is obviously a total fraud) anyway, they began talking, and it wasn’t long before jessica was telling me about all the “experience” that she had with horses. She said she was from nj originally, and that she had trained under, and competed against, some of the “best riders in the country,” and that she had even competed on the “aa” hunter- jumper circuit. I stood there listening, but was totally confused. The things that were coming out of jessica’s mouth, did not match what i was seeing in person. She told me to visit her website, Fourthngoaltraining.com) and her facebook page, Fourth ‘n goal training) and if i ever needed any lessons, or horse-training, to give her a call. At that moment, i was still very confused, so decided to watch her for the rest of the day, and see this “aa-circuit nj horse-woman,” ride a little more. That afternoon was a “show to remember” to say the least, but not to be remembered in a good way! saying it was a “travesty,” would be putting it nicely. Jessica showed an older palomino gelding over 2’-2’3’’ and it was painful to watch. I have seen children, at 7 years of age, that ride more correctly than jessica santiago. This woman is either totally lying about her experience level, or she has zero natural talent for riding, and cannot grasp basic beginner-level riding fundamentals. In actuality, it is probably both in her case.) her courses were so bad, that i really felt bad for the horse. The horse was sweet, and very tolerant. Jessica’s “leg” was all over that poor horse. Her jumping position was nothing other than dangerous. Her heels were never down, and her leg would slide so far back, that it would push her body over the horse’s shoulders, and it’s a miracle that she didn’t fall. In addition to the terrible leg position, she would “over-jump” each small fence like she was in a grand prix event, and land on the horse’s back with a “thud!” her reins were always too long, and her releases were far over exaggerated. She almost fell off several times, but the honesty of that horse kept her aboard. That horse deserves a gold medal for taking care of such a diabolical rider. Riding this badly, should be considered as horse-abuse. After awhile, i couldn’t take the embarrassment, and i decided to leave. When i got home, i immediately visited jessica’s website, and this is verbatim what she says about herself: “ | “jessica santiago is our head trainer here at fourth ‘n goal training. Jessica has extensive experience in bringing along hunter and jumper horses. She has competed against some of the biggest names in the hunter/jumper world and uses her experience to teach her students. Jessica believes in teaching her students the important aspects of caring for horses and understanding them.” | It seems to me, that jessica santiago writes about as well as she rides. Maybe she is a professional writer as well! haha!) i know that after i post this report, she will change her website “trainer info,” so i took a screen-shot of the page, and decided to upload it to this report. Despite all of the grammatical mistakes, this website introduction just doesn’t match the person that i saw ride. Something is definitely fishy here. I think that it is wrong for someone who cannot ride correctly themselves, to be instructing others how to do so. Especially children) obviously, the clients she has “wrangled” must have no experience with horses, or with the correct ways of riding. If they did, they would never send their child to this “trainer” again. When i visited jessica’s facebook and website, i saw many photos of her riding incorrectly. Anyone with an experienced eye for equitation, can see that she is a total farce. I took it upon myself, to correct her riding via photos that she has plastered all over her website. It may seem a little harsh to some, but i feel that this woman is a danger to beginner riders. As i stated previously, on the first day that a beginner rider takes her first riding lesson, the first thing taught is to: “keep your heels down.” this is one, if not the, most important fundamental elements of all types of riding. If keeping your heels down, is so important on day 1, then why can’t this self-proclaimed, “professional” rider, keep her heels down in any of the photos shown here? If this rule is that important to a beginner, don’t you think it is more important for a professional to keep their heels down? Of course! this woman has no idea how to ride correctly. Just view any of jessica’s photos, and see all the basic riding mistakes that she makes. A photo is worth 1000 words, and i have about 8-10 photos of jessica riding terribly. It’s not like 1 photo out of 10 photos is incorrect, it is 10 out of 10 that are incorrect. Jessica santiago’s riding skills are that of a advanced-beginner rider. She has no business teaching anyone to ride, or “training” anyone’s horse. How can you teach someone to ride correctly, when you, yourself cannot ride correctly? It’s the blind leading the blind in this situation. I was worried about the children that jessica is trying to teach, so i decided to post this report. Riding lessons are expensive, and it’s easy for jessica to take advantage of someone who isn’t familiar with correct riding technique. Parents, grand-parents, etc) this would mean, that jessica santiago is a fraud, and that she is taking hard-working people’s money, and not providing correct instruction. The only way to classify it, is as “fraud.” i called several of my friends who are trainers in nj and none of them had ever heard of jessica santiago. My final though it, i feel that jessica santiago, is a self-taught backyard yahoo rider, who has no business teaching anyone how to ride, or training any horses. She herself needs many, many, many, hours of professional help with her own position. She is a fraud, who is stealing people’s money, and not providing correct instruction. As always, the proof is in the photos.
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