Is becoming a racehorse trainer right for me?
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How to become a Racehorse Trainer
To become a licensed racehorse trainer, you have to fill out a licensing application and pass a test. Trainers must be licensed by the racing commission of each state where they intend to start training, and licensing requirements can vary from state to state. The test is both of practical knowledge relating to horse care and training and of the Rules of Racing, with particular attention to the rules regarding use of medications and other issues for which the trainer is responsible.
There is no requirement that you have any education of any kind; there are racehorse trainers who have never completed high school and trainers who have advanced college degrees. Most people who apply for trainer's licenses spend time working on the backside of a racetrack or at a training centre in other capacities (as a groomer or assistant trainer) under the supervision of a licensed trainer as a way of learning the ins and outs of training, and also to make contacts.
Many successful trainers start out as assistants to successful trainers. This is where they make the connections with people who can recommend them to clients. Most trainers barely scrape a living when they start out. It isn't uncommon to find new trainers living out of a car or van, or living in a tack room on the backstretch, when they first start out.