Rodeo School Travels Midwest
The right equipment is important if you want to excel in any sport. However, buying basic equipment might be too expensive for a lot of people. This hinders them from pursuing something that might be life-changing. Tom Reeves decided that he wouldn’t sit by and watch this happen.
Tom Reeves is a rodeo legend who went pro before he turned 16. He is an 18-time National Finals Rodeo qualifier, the 2001 Saddle Bronc Rider PRCA World Champion, and a 2008 inductee ProRodeo Hall of Famer. He has also guided the Ranger College (TX) to the men’s National Finals Rodeo title which earned him a “Mentoring Award” from the ProRodeo Hall of Fame.
The challenge of acquiring the essential rodeo equipment, learning rodeo skills, and teaching important life skills was the motivation behind the Wild Horse Youth Program, founded by Tom Reeves from scratch. He hopes this free rodeo school will pass on what he holds dear as it travels across the Midwest.
As the main focus is on kids, the first sessions are slow and safety is the number one priority. The program aims to educate, inspire, and engage the youth in the Midwest by establishing a connection between the individual and horse as a way of guiding children from adolescence to adulthood. Activities such as roping, tying skills, competition, branding calves, breaking and riding young colts, mounting a horse, wrestling calves, and learning to ride inspires the imagination of young people. These activities challenge young people to build the skills necessary in developing relationships, promoting self-esteem, and using their skills in the best way possible. Tom Reeves and the program understand that these skills are needed globally.
Students of the program are provided with the best tricks and tips to stay on as they work their way up from the ground, beginning with staying balanced while your body is in the saddle. The program has some mentors who are also youth ranging from local volunteers to student-workers. They help Tom in making sure that the proper equipment, attire, and supervision is present before a child engages in any activity. The Wild Horses Program draws from the experience of Tom Reeves to mentor young champions, conduct youth events, and inspire excellence.
Reeves participates in the activities planned by the program. This instills confidence in young riders as they see Tom doing what might seem daunting. Showing them how to do something and doing it together is his teaching philosophy as it is not simply throwing information at them but ingraining the correct skills. Physical training is emphasized as physical strength is required in rodeo. This philosophy goes beyond rodeo and into developing healthy habits which come in handy throughout the lives of the youth. Peer pressure is explored in the program’s rodeo clinics. Students are encouraged to share their stories and are provided with tools to counter any challenges life might throw at them.
Students will hopefully test their skills and compete in a Wild Horses Youth Program Rodeo which Reeves plans to organize.