Ed Crothers, The Equine Analyst

Ed Crothers, The Equine Analyst, grew up on a farm in southern Ohio. Ed's father was a blacksmith and horse trainer. He instilled the love of horsemanship in Ed at a very young age. Ed spent his whole life riding and working with horses, so it seemed natural to for him to enter into the equine world for his career.

Working with his father, Ed was exposed to a large number of horses, some of which were very disrespectful. As Ed's riding ability increased he found himself riding more and more problem horses. By the age of sixteen, Ed had begun training and breaking on his own and was embarking on a path that would lead him into a career in the equine industry.

Having spent his teenage years training horses, his training and breaking abilities were known throughout the county. After graduating high school, Crothers went to work as the farm manager for Delmar Farm in West Union, Ohio. At Delmar, Ed was able to prove himself as the farm manager of a quarter horse farm that averaged a normal boarding of 60 horses. Ed was in charge of breaking and training the horses that passed through Delmar Farm. During this time, Ed began close working relationships with area veterinarians and farriers. He also began managing personnel on a daily basis, as the farm hands reported to him.

After two years at Delmar Farm, Ed accepted a Farm Manager position at Classicway Farm in Morrow, Ohio. This move was a large step up as the daily boarding was 400 to 500 thoroughbred horses. Ed also managed and supervised the farm employees. At Classicway, in addition to being Farm Manager, Ed was also the Stallion Manager and handled all of the stallion and breeding operations. In this position, Ed was responsible for running the breeding shed, foaling out mares, staffing responsibilities and grounds maintenance. Ed worked with customers and clients on a daily basis to keep them informed on the status and progress of their horses.

It was during this time that Ed had a breakthrough development in his horsemanship skills by interacting with the farm veterinarians and chiropractors. Ed began to see that bad behavior was caused by health issues and not attitude problems. You could say that this was an awakening to the holistic approach of horsemanship that Ed has used for many years now.

In 1990, Ed became farm manager for Frisch's Big Boy Farms in Morrow, Ohio. This thoroughbred farm, bred and trained horses for the race track. The daily boarding was 400 to 500 horses; and Ed was responsible for daily activities and 10 full-time employees. Ed's duties also included foaling out mares, handling stallions, booking mares, ground maintenance and staffing. Customer interaction was also one of the tasks that Ed excelled at, and he increased the customer base of the farm. As Ed's reputation grew, he began to break an increasing number of horses. It was during this time, Ed began to see a large number of horses with behavioral problems. To address these problems, Ed began to develop round pen techniques to address behavior. This allowed him to train the horse, and also correct the bad behavior from the ground before getting in the saddle.

In 1996, Ed left Frisch's Farm to start out on his own, establishing Cedar Brook Farm. This move not only allowed Ed to return to his home, but he also had the freedom to train horses with the techniques he developed. Ed also returned to his love of training horses of all breeds and disciplines. Today, he continues to breed and train thoroughbreds, but also breaks and trains horses for pleasure, barrel racing, trail, etc. Over the last 20 years, Ed and his staff at Cedar Brook Farm have trained thousands of horses, including many that others could not train. Ed has continued to use and perfect the techniques that he has developed over the years. His holistic approach to horsemanship is to use veterinarian and chiropractic treatment to ensure soundness before the horse starts training. Basic training then begins in the round pen, using the techniques Ed has developed, allowing the horse to learn basic skills and respect. Body language plays a large role in this process, and Ed has developed sound procedures to bond with the horse and foster cooperation quickly. The current practice at Cedar Brook Farm is to train a client's horse and then train the client on how to perform basic round pen techniques to address common problems and allow them to assert authority and build respect from the ground.

Ed and his wife Angie have been in 4-H for the last 25 years and have advised their own club for 15 years. Ed has been able to share his abilities with the young equestrians in Adams and Brown counties. He feels strongly about giving back to the community and ensuring that the young riders learn skills that will keep them safe and allow them to identify potential problems. Ed has taught his round pen techniques at horse camps in both Adams and Brown counties to help young riders. Attending these seminars is entertaining and informative. Seeing the young 4-Hers line up with their horses to have Ed solve their problems is proof that the techniques work. Tractor Supply Co. was so impressed enough with the content that they have that they have Ed put on clinics at several of their locations. Ed has also developed and sells a video for young 4-H riders to learn proper safety with their horses.

Ed's plans are to continue to assist riders to have a more enjoyable experience with their horses. He continues with his basic round pen clinics and is developing a ndew clinic for horses that have been trained, and have now developed "bad habits". This clinic will include a vet and chiropractor that will treat any skeletal or internal medical conditions. Many horses develop bad behavior as a way to move away from or avoid painful conditions. By addressing the painful issues many horses lose their bad habits and become content and obedient again.
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