What happens at an Appointment?

Here at Kirsty Rawden Veterinary Physiotherapy we do not work in a conventional way. I have found that allowing the horse to move during the session alleviates mental and physical tension. So ideally book the arena for our session or have somewhere clear where we can go for a walk if need be. 

First appointments typically last 1.5-2 hours but as my sessions are led by the horse I will allow the horse as much time as it needs. Follow up appointment will typically last between 1-1.5 hours.

Case History

Once you have contacted me to make an appointment you will receive a short form via email that will be filling in about your horse. This will ask questions about previous injuries, workload, management and any issues you are experiencing with your horse at present. This form will also ask you to provide consent to treat, provide information on GDPR and have you agree to my T&Cs. Payment for initial appointments are due at the time of booking via BACS, details will be provided via email.  Once I arrive for your appointment we will discuss the case history and any concerns you have about your horse. 


I will watch your horse at rest, walking and trotting. Horses may need to be seen on the lunge or under saddle depending on any issues you may be having. Once a visual assessment has taken place I will do a manual assessment palpating through the body and assessing joint range of motion to pin point any areas of tension, pain, muscle imbalance, weaknesses and areas of compensation. I will discuss what I have found and how we treat and move forward. 


Once I have identified areas of concern I will take the horse from you and begin treating your horse. This will start with me walking your horse out to encourage relaxation and start to build a connection. I will then invite your horse to soften his neck and find a safe space mentally that he is happy for me to work. It is really important that the horse is in a good mindset for treatment to be most effective. You may see me move between methods, walk or just stand and wait, by doing this I am giving the horse time to process and release what is happening to his body. At points this may appear like I am not doing very much, I may not talk much but I am just trying to find what works best for your horse.  I will incorporate stretches and electrotherapies where I think necessary. 

Exercise Plan

Once treatment has taken place I will write your report up electronically and include any exercises I feel would be beneficial to help strengthen your horses posture to include stretches, groundwork and ridden exercises. I will demonstrate any exercises given and explain the correct way to perform them. I will then allow you chance to practice and ask questions. You will then receive your report via email. 


It is recommended that your horse will require more than one treatment, the interval will be determined by how your horse responded and how he felt on the day. By returning I can assess how your horse responded to treatment, readdress areas that needed more work and assess and progress any exercises that were given. Once the initial course of treatment has taken place it is advised that your horse is seen every 3 months if there are no underlying concerns and more frequently if there is a condition that requires managing or the horse is used for competition.

Things to note

  • We will need an area to move the horse around - arenas are great, or just an indoor barn space, yard or field is fine. If the weather is adverse we will take cover whilst I treat and just walk out when needed. 
  • A long rope such as a parelli line is best, I have one in the car if you don't have one, headcollars are preferred over rope halters.
  • Please refrain from touching your horse during the appointment, sometimes they may appear zoned out but the need space to process mentally. 
  • Please refrain from wondering around or making feeds during the session as this can be very distracting. Enjoy the calm.
  • Avoid booking an appointment close to any competitions or outings as your horse may require an altered exercise regime following my visit. 
  • Ensure your horse is ready, clean and dry prior to your appointment start time. i.e do not catch them once I have arrived.
  • If you are unable to trot your horse up please make sure there is somebody available to do it for you. 
  • If your horse shows any sign of illness prior to your appointment please postpone your appointment and seek veterinary advice
  • Any appointment cancelled within 48 hours will be charged at 50%, within 24 hours at 100%
Book your appointment now!