Horse books

Testimonials about Doris Halstead's physical therapy work with horses and her teaching


Doris Halstead is amazing. I certified in Equine Natural Movement, which is Hellerwork for horses. When I encountered Release the Potential, I devoured it and practiced the releases whenever I could. They are so effective and simple. So many horses benefit from this work. Some of my clients are $100,000 competitive horses, some are $100 mustangs, but they all get to have these releases when I do a bodywork session. There is nothing like the thoracic release, the dural releases and poll work.

Doris, thank you so much for your work and your book. I wish I could study with you directly, but the book is priceless. Right now, I am working on a mare who has so much poll disorder that she seems to be eliminating toxins from her head, with a crusty residue that is new. Go figure that out! But she seems on the mend from incredible panic attacks.

If anyone hasn't tried these releases, don't be afraid, just jump in and do them. The horse is our true teacher. Horses understand the minute we start this work. The horses talk to me when I do this work. Thanks again, Doris, for your masterpiece book.

- Margaret Henkels, Equine Natural Movement

Hi Doris, I discovered your work a couple of years ago after having been through the universal gamut trying to find someone to help my horse's subtle lameness. The local university vet school couldn't see it, and the only vet that could see it wanted to blister his knees. I knew this wasn't the cause of the problem, so I went to a variety of massage therapists and holistic body workers, with some temporary positive effect. My friend and I searched arduously for a copy of your out of print Release the Potential to no avail. Very frustrating as I knew that as long as he was moving like this he would be creating compensatory injuries that would only cloud the issue even further.

I recently received your long-awaited second edition. It's very user-friendly and my horse is giving me some very dramatic feedback. But I think I need a little help training my eye to see rib subluxations and thoracic vertebrae misalignments. Do you know of anyone that does the BREMM Method professionally in Georgia?

Thank you for making available this valuable work.

- Robin

To Doris Halstead, the BEST physical therapist ever, Cassidy was a little "off" to one direction after being a little rowdy in the pasture. An easy adjustment using your instruction and he is perfect again. Thanks! Many times I have said I would not want to be trying to ride horses anymore without Doris' instruction.

- Sharon

Doris, I want to let you know how greatly I appreciated your recent Texas workshop, and how much I was able to take home and put into practice. I feel an undersaddle difference in my gelding already, and both horses on which I worked are eager to have me do some more! The book has been very helpful, as well, as a reference resource.

- Helen

Dear Vera, Wow! What a great clinic we had with you this last weekend. Doris was everything you promised AND MORE. I'm usually hesitant to commit my horse to a clinician I've never seen, but you have a good reputation and Doris' book convinced me to go. I'm very glad I did! Thanks again for loaning out your RV to us.

Best Wishes, J.E.

P.S. Let me know if you're able to get Doris back in the future.

Vera, Thanks so much for hosting the Doris Halstead clinic. I learned so, so much. It was very gracious of you to allow Judy and me to stay in your RV and VERY convenient for us to not have to drive so much. If you have time (no rush) can you drop me an email reminding me what Doris did for the cinchy horse (QH/Trak cross)? I have a friend who has had big problems with her young horse just going under saddle who bucks, bucks, bucks as soon as he feels the girth tighten. Thanks for all you do,

- R.W.

Thank you so much for hosting Doris and allowing me the opportunity to audit her clinic. I went home and put some of what I learned into immediate practice -- and saw results! But, boy, she must be a very strong woman to work on horses all day long:). I hope that it is not several years before I have another chance to study with Doris -- and next time, have her work on my horse(s) and/or myself! Also, your home is lovely, and your husband's cooking delicious.

- H.M.

Yay! I am so pleased to hear this (Release the Potential is again available)! I've sure been waiting for this news. I've ordered a copy at your site and hope you sell zillions more.

- Holly Dolben

I have known Doris for many years. I know her as a breeder and a very fine-feeling and elegant rider. Her many years of experience, (where she studied the strength and weaknesses of the horse) and her love for horses, have given her the push to help those beautiful creatures through her physical therapy.

- Walter Zettl, Author:
Dressage in Harmony: From Basic to Grand Prix
Circle of Trust: Reflections on the Essence of Horses and Horsemanship

I completed an equine sport massage course last summer and as part of the class we watched Symmetry in Motion. As I worked with horses I began looking for something more than massage and remembered the video. When Release the Potential became available, I ordered it and like the results that I'm getting but feel like I could benefit from further instruction. Are you available for clinics? If so, what is the format? Do you work with both riders and horses? How many days? What is the cost? How many students per clinic? What type of facility do you need? . . . Thank you for the information,

- Sue Graham

Hi Doris, I downloaded your excerpt from your new book. I really enjoyed it and would like to be able to get a copy of your new book when it becomes available. I also talked to Beth Benard, she said she contacted you and you are out near Buffalo. Well, I was wondering about any clinic you may be doing this year. I would love for you to work on Leader again. And I know he would love it to. He needs it. I have him adjusted by a chiropractic vet but could sure us some of your touch. I try to do it but somehow I don't get the same results. He was never better than when you worked you magic on him. Well, I just wanted to say hi and see if you may be close enough at some point to have Leader be seen by you again.

Kris Conley and Leader

Hi Doris,

I wanted you to know I am really enjoying your new book. There is so much good information in it! If you ever decide to teach a hands on class, please let me know.

I would be happy to sell/promote your books at the Holistic Horse Fair. I can take mine for people to see.

I think you have so much valuable information to teach to others;-)).

Wendy Wolfe
Animal Communication - Animal Aromatherapy
Equine CranioSacral Therapy - Energy Touch

Spring is finally here in northern Vermont!!!!! Can we schedule a visit from you? Everyone is anxiously awaiting their next session with you!!!

I bought your new book and IT IS GREAT. The addition of the diagnostic part is a HUGE improvement. It is so easy to use now. (I should have sold my copies of the earlier edition while the prices were hot!!!

- Susan

Thanks so very much for the great visit this week. Allie feels absolutely GREAT! Relaxed and straight moving. I started Liam yesterday with first the Therapeutic Touch and ground work (labyrinth) walked him thru the obstacles forward then did ask him to back over a pole ~ not easy. He was very agreeable as I have done a lot of in hand "Spanish" style ground work before. Liam was interested in working with me nicely. Then I saddled him and walked him around then thru the labyrinth again, nice cooperation. We then trotted about the arena and he felt well balanced and easily connected his hind end to the front ~ Yea! I trotted him about 5 minutes or more than called it a day. I will gradually keep up this regime and allow him to build up not only his strength but also the confidence. Thanks so much!! He is a nice horse and we so need to help him enjoy a great life! Already we have people interested in seeing you the next time here! perhaps sooner than later.

- Susan

Since you worked on Simon last spring, he has not had the head jerking problem that occurred every year (since 1998) from about the winter solstice to the spring equinox. I saw just one tiny jerk a few weeks ago. Joanna has not seen any. Usually, they occurred quite often and sometimes the jerk "traveled" about a foot. They were so bad that he couldn't be ridden because the bit would be a problem when a jerk occurred. I have not had Terry out to see Simon because there seems to be no reason to. Our regular equine massage therapist is on disability and she recommended someone else [who] gave him a regular massage in August and has given him "maintenance" massages monthly for $35. So, Simon is doing very well for his 23 years. And I am delighted that you were able to work on him with everyone involved profiting from the experience -- Terry for the education, Simon for the results, you for the photos for your book and me for my pocket book.

- Pat

Dear Doris, I am happy [that you're writing a new book], because your first book seems to be out of print at the minute, I tell everyone to get it and I look forward to the revised edition. Everyone seems to be on the bandwagon now, but you started it before it was cool.

- Vera

Just wanted to let you know your chapter is excellent! You have such a talent for explaining myofascial 'work' that it's a pleasure to read. Even though I've practiced this approach for 18 yrs, I learn something new every time I read and re-read your book. So now I'm more eager than ever for publication day.

- Holly

Coventry Equestrian Center in Washington, PA has an enthusiastic endorsement of Doris's equine therapy work. In part:

"... What Doris recommends is reading her book Release the Potential. She says every thing she did to Johannis and Dakota is in the book. I, of course, ordered the book, and she is right -- this book is so simple to follow and laid out with great pictures. If you see me groping behind your horse pulling its tail, massaging its gums or flexing the crest of its neck, you can be sure that I learned it from Doris...."

From their October 2003 newsletter