Three young horses galloping in a row
Before Buying Buying Care Tack Use Woodswell Farm logo - a water well under a tree

Off the Hoof Horsemanship

A horse care guide for prospective owners to consider before buying their first horse.


As the owner of a boarding barn in a college town over many years I saw a lot of graduating students purchase a horse without considering any of the aspects of horse ownership. Often this ended badly not only for the students, but for the horses. So in the 1980's I developed the "Off the Hoof Horsemanship" idea as a non-credit course to teach prospective horse owners the things they needed to know BEFORE they made the plunge into horse ownership. This web site is the result of that course.

On this site, I will cover the parts of horsemanship someone needs to know in order to make an informed decision about horse ownership and the choices they will have to make for the welfare of their horse. As part of knowing what you are getting into, I will cover riding styles, breeds, horse care, and stable management.

A Horse's View - a picture of a pasture from a horse's point of view