You asked for it ... information for all those of you who ask such great questions!

Articles and Publications
on a variety of topics including human and equine anatomy and
non-traditional approaches to working with horses and riders

Anatomy | Behavior | Bodywork | Clinic Organizing | Dentistry | Essential Oils | Osteopathy | Farrier |
Groundwork | Heartmath | Homeopathy | Fun | Massage | Misc. | Nutrition | Organizations |
Riding | Rollkur | Saddle Fitting | Chinese Medicine | Training Gadgets | Vaccination | Yoga | Zen



for your holistic barn, including our suppliers of herbs, essential
oils and other useful items


with some of the people we have learned from,
some of whom operate training programs so you can learn, too

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Articles and Publications

Anatomy & Movement - Human

Who's Best Built to Ride?  by Dr. Deb Bennett
Recognizing the Anatomical Differences Between Men and Women and Revising Traditional Teaching Techniques May Make Better Riders of Both Genders

EquiBalance Part 3 by Julie Leiken
Use the idea of two sets of bolts to help you learn to sit evenly in the saddle.

Comparable Parts – You are more like your horse than you think! by Wendy Murdoch

A Rider's Success Starts with the Hip Joint by Mary Midkiff

The Psoas Muscles
The psoas are the link between the upper and lower girdles of the body and enable experienced riders to influence their horses with their seats and legs.

The Psoas Muscle And Its Importance in Riding by Karen Gunn

Muscle Use In Riding - by Sue Morris

Basic Spiral Seat: Independence of Seat and Hands by Nancy Nicholson

The Secret to Riding – Engaging Your Psoas from Centered Riding

Why Do I Get a Backache When I Ride? by Peggy Cummings

The Psoas: Muscle of The Soul


Anatomy & Movement - Equine

What Being On the Forehand Means to the Horse by Kathy Farrokhzad, HorseListening blog

The Ring of Muscles Revisited by Dr. Deb Bennett

Good Movement:  Getting the Best from Your Horse by Susan E. Harris

Biomechanical Riding & Dressage: A Rider's Atlas   by Dr. Nancy L. Nicholson
Thoughtful and interesting text and illustrations detailing such issues as contact, bend, straightness and elevation.

Making Sense of Movement: Maximizing Performance & Minimizing Injury   by Katrina Woollatt
What would you say if I suggested that both we and our horses are better served by placing greater emphasis on nurturing suppleness and flexibility than on strength training?

Comparable Parts #2 – What do you know, it’s only my toe! by Wendy Murdoch

TMJ and TMD: Exploring the Whole Body Connection by Maureen Rogers

What Lies Beneath the Rider’s Seat: The Horse’s Psoas Muscles! by Stefanie Reinhold

Beautiful Necks By Barbara Chasteen

The Psoas Muscle Group as a Source of Performance Problems by K.J. Ridgway

Horses Inside Out - Articles by and about anatomy and biomechanics expert Gillian Higgins

The potential consequences of starting a horse under saddle too young
Why People Start Horses Too Hard, Too Young

The Horse's Head and Neck in Relation to Balance - by Tonja Dausend
Interesting animated illustrations to help you visualize the mechanics of a horse's movement.



The 5 F’s - Flight, Fight, Freeze, Fidget, Faint by Robyn Hood
One of the main principles of the TTEAM work is to teach a horse to override the flight or fight reflex. We teach the horse to stop and evaluate a situation by thinking rather than by responding instinctively.



Deep & the Methods of Modern Dressage Training by Theresa Sandin

Bent out of shape: Reflections on Rollkur by


The Alexander Technique: How it Helps Horseback Riders   by Adam Bailey
Release tension and achieve "self-carriage" in your body to help your horse achieve it in his

Clinic Organizing

Suggestions for Clinic Organizers -- veteran clinician Jessica Jahiel provides common sense advice for choosing and booking a clinician, sorting out the finances, advertising and more.



The Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ): More than a pain in the mouth!  by Joanna Robson, DVM

The TMJ is the “Master Link” by Dr. Heather Mack

Why Equine Dentistry?

What Every Rider Needs to Know About Equine Dentistry by Nancy Camp

Equine Tooth Problems & Dental Care

Common Equine Dental Malocclusions - illustrated glossary of common dental issues

Equine Dentistry - illustrations of some common dental issues

Check Your Horse's Mouth - an efficient and thorough ­system that lets you assess almost everything oral from the outside of your horse’s lips to the rearmost premolar

Year by Year, Tooth by Tooth from The Horse (free subscription)


Equine Osteopathy

What is Equine Osteopathy?



My Home Remedies for Horses includes Essential Oils, Does Yours?
Use of essential oils for many common horse issues

Equine Raindrop Therapy by Dr. Heather Mack 


Feet and Farrier Info.

Anatomy of the Inner Hoof Wall

The Farrier and Hoofcare Resource Center -- Find a wealth of information on hoof care issues, written for both horse owners and professional farriers.

Natural Balance Hoof Care

Treating Founder (Chronic Laminitis) without Horseshoes

Frog Management by Pete Ramey


Connected Groundwork -- Peggy Cummings' Connected Groundwork exercises not only loosen, reeducate and strengthen your horse’s body, they also give you assessment tools that tell you a great deal about the state of your horse’s mind and body.

Ground Work from the Rider's Point of View by Gincy S. Bucklin, a retired Centered Riding Instructor



Study: How horses and people connect
A horse's heart rhythms reflect their emotional state and can respond to the emotional state of a nearby human, according to a pilot study conducted by Alliant International University Professor Ellen Gehrke and the Institute of HeartMath.

New Meaning of "Horse Sense" - more on the HeartMath study.

Heart to Heart: A Quantitative Approach to Measuring the Emotional Bond between Horses and Humans
Ellen Kaye Gehrke, Ph.D, a consultant and professor of international business and management, and
her research team engage in a series of scientific studies to measure the presence of emotional coherence and incoherence between horses/horses and horses humans.



The Use of Herbs as an Additive to Horse Feed -- by Joyce Harman, DVM
Despite the increasing use of drugs in our society, chronic disease continues to be a problem, and is in fact an increasing problem. Herbal medicine offers a broad spectrum of choices for treatment.

Echinacea Proven Effective In Horses
Research from the Equine Research Centre in Guelph, Ontario



Homeopathy and First Aid for Horses by Madalyn Ward, DVM

Horse Homeopathy - What to have in your homeopathic first-aid kit

Natural Remedies To Relieve Colic In Horses - homepathic remedies for various types of colic

Nosodes: Alternative to Traditional Vaccines -- Horse owners can use homeopathic nosodes for West Nile, Rabies and more. Also for your companion animals ...

Nosodes for Treatment and Building a Strong Bio-Electromagnetic Energy Field (EMF) to Protect Against Infective Agents -- by Gloria Dodd, DVM

The Materia Medica of the Nosodes -- by Dr Robert Séror

Role Of Nosodes -- From the National Journal of Homoeopathy

Homeopathy and First Aid for Horses -- by Madeline Ward, DVM

Homeopathic First Aid Medicines -- from the British Association of Homeopathic Veterinary Surgeons

Amazing Arnica - Natural First Aid for Horse and Rider

How do I give a remedy to a horse? - answers to basic questions about homopathy for horses


Just for Fun

Hoofbeats: Gaits and Footfalls -  A series of "natural" movements many horses perform enthusiastically with no training, and often in spite of their riders' best efforts! Have you ever ridden "The Omigod" or "The Boink?"

French and Saunders: Ponies -- hilarious comedy from Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders

Men Doing Dressage

Beet Pulp Safety Warning a.k.a. The Famous Squirrel Story

A Horse's View of Natural Horsemanship -- A horse tells about his owner, the clinic junkie

Words of Wisdom From a Horse

The Cat Alarm

Doggie Dressage -- canine musical freestyle

The Horse Quartet



Printable Equine Massage Study Guide from the National Board of Certification of Animal Acupressure and Massage



Grandma's Home Remedies: Home Remedies for Horses



Conversion Calculator
Make sense of the measurements ppm/g/mg/oz

Mineral Ratios and Deficiencies/Excesses
Which minerals interact and compete with one another for absorption in the horse.

Holistic Equine Nutrition -- by Joyce Harman, DVM
When it comes to equine nutrition from a holistic perspective, virtually nothing has been published and very little research has been performed.

Feeding the Hoof by Pete Ramey

Fruits and Veggies for Your Horse
What's safe and what's not



International Alliance for Animal Therapy and Healing (IAATH)

National Board of Certification of Animal Acupressure and Massage



Holistic Horse

Natural Horse Magazine

Eclectic Horseman

Equestrian Network Magazine

Horse Science News


True Collection   by Dr. Deb Bennett
You won't find it in a "frame" or a head set. No, the perfect posture for ridden performance is shaped by your horse's spine.

Lessons From Woody: On teaching your horse to carry himself straight   by Dr. Deb Bennett

Connected Riding --Peggy Cummings' Connected Riding is a holistic approach to classical riding principles that bio-mechanically enhances freedom of movement for the performance, health and longevity of both horse and rider.

Aids Versus Cues by Ron Meredith

Circle of the Aids by Dr. Thomas Ritter

The Definition of "On the Bit"  by Dr. Max Gahwyler and Bettina Drummond

Contact = Connection -- A post on the Equine Studies Institute forum. Scroll down to the Aug. 1 post by Dr. Deb Bennett

Contact and
Activating the Hind Legs  by Sue Morris
Two interesting articles on how to engage the horse back to front and avoid the temptation to put a horse in a false frame

Who Balances Whom?   by Wendy Murdoch 

To Bend or Not to Bend: That is the Question by Karl Mikolka

Rider Affect on the Horse's Movement and
The Seat and Getting the Horse on the Bit
  by Beverly Whittington
Written for gaited horse riders, but containing much information that is applicable to all disciplines.

What's Missing is the Middle - by Mary Midkiff

The Horse is Your Mirror by Shana Ritter

Toto Too? Recovering the Sense of Tact in Today's Dressage by Kip Mistral

Anatomy of Riding: The Hands by Bonnie Walker

Saddle fitting

The Society of Master Saddlers fitting information for English saddles

Western Saddle Fitting Guide

The Proper Position of a Western Saddle

Horse, Rider and Saddle Fitment fitting information for Aussie saddles

Saddle-Fitting: Much More Than 9 Points to Perfection!  by Joanna Robson, DVM

Hands On Saddle Fitting by Joyce Harman, DVM

Used Saddle Safety Check (Bargain or Bust?) the basics of evaluating a used English saddle

Treeless vs. Conventional Saddles: Back Pressure Evaluated

Saddle Fitting for the Thinking Rider: Part 1
Saddle Fitting for the Thinking Rider: Part 2

Saddle Fit for Women by Jochen Schleese

Traditional Chinese Medicine

Whole Horse Chinese Herbal Medicine and Acupuncture articles on TCM applications for horses

Equine Acupuncture Meridian Charts

Printable Equine Acupressure Study Guide from the National Board of Certification of Animal Acupressure and Massage

TRaining Aids and Gadgets

On rope halters, hackamores, bitless bridles—’natural’ or potentially harmful? by Stefanie Reinhold

Tight Nosebands – Yes or No, and Why? by Kerry Weisselberg, 3*** evente

Drawreins and Sidereins by Jessica Jahiel

A Few Thoughts on the Use of Draw Reins by Karl Mikolka

Chambon and Gogue by Jessica Jahiel

Neck Stretcher by Jessica Jahiel

Gadgets: What Not to Use, and Why by Theresa Sandin/Sustainable Dressage

Reasons why we do not use side reins by Jean Luc Cornille
The concept that placing the neck will makes the horse’s back function a specific way is as naïve that the theory, “correct aids equal correct movement.” This is complete ignorance of the horse's mental processing. The horse's first reaction is always protecting his actual body state. If the horse “errors’ are analyzed intelligently, the horse errors inform the rider of the horse’s actual body state and the rider can decide and provide appropriated insights. If at the contrary, the horse’s errors are judged in respect of the side reins’ theoretical effects, the horse will only figure a compromise protecting his fundamental muscle imbalance, morphological flaw, memory, or other issue.

Teaching a Horse to Stretch (Without Gadgets) by Jessica Jahiel

Being Compassionate About Tack Choices by Karen Nelson
A good common sense look at the actual function of several common training devices - martingales, side reins, longeing rigs, etc.

Noseband Special: Part II: The Purpose of the Noseband
It is surprising to notice that many riders, even top level ones, do not have a clue why their horse is wearing a noseband, let alone why they chose a certain type.

The Body Wrap by Linda Tellington Jones                     See a photo of the bodywrap in use

Face and Head Wraps – Calming Bands by Robyn Hood, Tellington TTouch Instructor

Vaccinating animals

Horse Vaccination Protocol by holistic veterinary practice DePaulo Equine Concepts
Mark DePaolo, DVM. has been treating horses for the negative side effects that occur from the over-use and un-judicious administration of “routine/ yearly/ booster” vaccines.

Problems With Vaccinations - by Madalyn Ward, DVM
How this holistic vet changed her mind about the advisability of routine vaccinations.

Titer Testing in Horses - A horse owner's response to vaccine reactions

New Vaccination Protocols - All of the 27 vet schools in North America are in the process of changing their protocols for vaccinating dogs and cats.

A New Look at the Vaccine Question by Richard H. Pitcairn, D.V.M.

Vaccinosis, an Issue Worth Pondering from Natural Horse Magazine, March/April 2007

Annual Vaccinations by Joyce Harman, DVM

Holistic Animal Health: Vaccinosis

Controversy in the Kennel: Issues in Pet Care by Gary Null, PhD
Vaccination, homeopathy, insect control

Vaccine Reaction Essay by Patricia Jordan, DVM, CVA, CTCVH


The Yoga of Competition  by Amanda Botur, MA, L.Ac., CHom

Zen of Riding

Zen Dressage by Sue Morris

Mindweeds by Shana Ritter
Strictly speaking, any effort we make is not good for our practice because it creates waves in our mind. It is impossible, however, to attain absolute calmness of our mind without any effort.



Magnet Therapy: What is Gauss?

Equine Therapy for Veterans - resources for veterans with mesothelioma, cancer caused by exposure to asbestos

Horse We Interviewed About His Reiki Session

Gentleness and Discipline by Dr. Thomas Ritter

The Co-Operative Principle by Dr. Thomas Ritter

Bodywrap Possibilities for dogs and other animals by Robyn Hood



Sources and Resources

Essential Oils

Camden-Grey Essential Oils - family-owned business selling quality essential oils and ingredients for making your own toiletry products. Good prices on the oils included in the natural fly spray recipe.

Herbs for Horses and Humans

San Francisco Herb Company - Quality culinary herbs and spices, extracts, teas, dehydrated vegetables, nuts, seeds, botanicals, essential oils, potpourri ingredients and fragrance oils. I've been buying most of the herbs I use as supplements for the horses from SF for more than a decade.

Monterey Bay Spice Company - Premium bulk herb botanicals sourced directly from the farmers and growers. My newest herb resource.

Mountain Rose Herbs - Quality certified organic products with a strict emphasis on sustainable agriculture. Seems SF Herb isn't stocking Eyebright, the ingredient in the eyewash recipe, so here's a another source I purchase from. Mountain Rose also stocks Chaste Berry (Vitex), for those of you with Cushings horses.

Homeopathic Remedies

Homeopathy Overnight Homeopathy for Health - Nosodes for West Nile, Rabies and other horse diseases


GloryBee Foods Inc. - Beeswax, carrier oils and other supplies for lotions and potions

E.D Luce Packaging - any kind of container you might need - bottles, jars, droppers and much more

Arbico-Organics - natural products for home, farm and pets, including fly predators and natural animal-care products


Natural horse care products - Chemical-free versions of everyday products you might use around the barn, including natural fly repellent spray and ointment and wound wash.

Healthy Horse Treats - Make your own horse treats, just for fun.


Animal Communicator

Janet Shepherd
A professional horsewoman for 25 years, Janet has great insight into horses that helps you interpret what your horse might be trying to tell you. (She speaks to other species, as well.) She'll respect your animal while honestly passing along the information she receives, and she handles sensitive issues with tact and gentleness. Schedule a session by calling (410) 507-4093.

Bodywork - Equine

Integrated Equine Bodyworks - Marleigh Freyenhagen is an experienced equine massage therapist who has also studied with an equine osteopath. I have consulted her many times to collaborate on cases (including my own horses) where my bodywork approach just wasn't completely addressing all of a horse's issues. Based in Sonoita, AZ.

EquiTouch Systems - Our concept of equine massage therapy involves the "whole horse." We don't believe in teaching "bits and pieces" of massage with no solid foundation. So we combined several unique methods of touch, bodywork and massage as well as exercise physiology with in-depth anatomy instruction to create an exceptional program.

The SENSE Method - SENSE Method practitioners touch and move the horse in gentle, precise ways to remind the horse how all his parts can work together harmoniously. Originator Mary Debono is a Guild Certified Feldenkrais Practitioner who has also studied animal massage, acupressure, kinesiology, psychology and behavior.

Jim Pascucci - Human and equine rolfer and author of Equine Structural Integration and Myofascial Release

Illinois Alliance for Animal Owners Rights - news about equine dentists, chiropractors and bodyworkers working to ensure horse owners can choose the care their animals need without the practitioners livelihoods being threatened by state veterinary organizations.


Red Hat Chiropractic - Dr. Louise Cash, DC, CAC, is a chiropractor using low-force, non-force techniques as well as cold-laser therapy for horses and their riders in Silver City, NM.  

WinterHaven Health Center - Dr. Nathan S. Conlee, Chiropractic Physician P.C., specializes in caring for athletes including his fellow equestrians in Tucson, AZ.

Rochelle Reea provides lessons in the Alexander Technique, a hands-on method of education that helps the body achieve natural ease, poise and general health, in Tucson, AZ.


Perfect Balance Equine Dentistry - Jana Echols, CEqD, is a caring, knowledgeable horsewoman trained and experienced in all the most up-to-date automated techniques to help keep your horse's mouth balanced and comfortable.

The Rite Bite Equine Dentistry - Phil Ratliff, C/EQD, C/AWHD, is an experienced veteran equine dentist with a passion for educating his clients and a great gift for making horses comfortable with his manual treatment techniques.



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