Youth of the Year

Ahh! I’m competing in the Youth of the Year contest at Kyova. This is my first year, and I’m at a disadvantage…I’m the youngest of the senior division. =S

I have to give oral reasons…Eeep.

And a speech about getting people to join AMHAY programs. It’s my first year so I haven’t had much experience with the youth stuff.

Has anyone done YoY before? Any tips? I’m scared, lol. x]

2 Responses to Youth of the Year

  1. j.a.b. says:

    Hi! I was in YOY for years, then a volunteer for the program at OKC, ran several local contests and even worked at AMHA and ran the national contest. SO….what do you want to know?
    Oral reasons – check with your local 4-H office for a handbook, AMHA does have one as well, here’s a link to it online: Also, get a copy of the Morgan Judging Standards and study it, here’s a link to that as well

    To start out you should learn some vocabulary. Pick 5-10 positive traits and 5-10 faults and know them cold. Know how to identify them on a horse and if you do identify know how to talk about them so you can sound knowledgeable in your presentation.
    Most important is to not overwhelm yourself at this late date, just read through the stuff, know some of that vocab and learn the presentation format. I can give you lots more advice on this, too much to put here in this forum, email me privately or you can even call me at 330/806-9180

    For the speech – get creative! Don’t be afraid to go wild with your ideas. Just remember you have only so much time. 5 minutes can seem like a lot when you sit down to write your speech, but by the time you’re done I guarantee you’ll be trying to figure out what to cut out so you don’t go over time. Visual aides are always nice but only if they make sense with your speech and you incorporate them. In other words don’t put up a picture of a horse just for the sake of having a visual aide.

    Again, I can go on and on. These contests can be overwhelming if you let them. Don’t let it be. It can be a lot of fun too and a fantastic way to learn about horses in general. Besides that, some of my closest friends that I have today I made during my time as a YOY contest and that was, sadly 15+ years ago.

    Call me! : )


  2. leslie says:

    I did a local contest a couple of times a few years ago. I actually catch rode both times since I didn’t have my own horse, but I think the riding is actually the easiest phase.

    I’m terrible at public speaking, so that was tough for me. Definitely practice your speech in front of your friends or parents or even the mirror. I think you’re permitted a visual aid, which can help because then it gives you something to work off of. They tend to like creativity, so have some fun with it and don’t try to make it too academic.

    The written test is pretty comprehensive, but if you have a familiarity with show rules, basic health care and anatomy (including bones and teeth…I remember getting completely stumped when I had to label the teeth) you should be fine.

    Just have fun with it and treat it as a learning experience. Even if you don’t come in first this year, but it’ll get easier the more contests you participate in.

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