Horseproblems Australia
Post Office Box Victor Harbor
SA. 5211
(61) 0885521418




John O'Leary
© 2001



I get letters almost every day on the subject of Horses with 'stifle/patella/sacroiliac' problems. These afflictions are widespread because of the lack of Breeding controls in the Industry in this Country and no doubt other parts of the World. We need to follow the lead of the EU. This one today is typical:

Hello John,

I just came across your site while searching for information on rehabilitating sore stifles. My 10 yr. old gelding, DJ, has sore stifles…the left one not very bad at all but the right one is quite sore and shows up when doing certain maneuvers. The elevated soreness of the right stifle is causing him to put more weight on his left hind which in turn has caused some separation of the hoof wall on the near side. Not really bad yet, but I want to do what I can to help him.



  • Poor conformation

  • Poor feeding as a youngster

  • incorrect Riding

  • Poor Breeding practices.

  • Injury


Read these:



Fixing Hind End Lameness in the Performance Horse


During this time and via these Horses, we have been able to considerably add to the list of communicatory indicators that Horses always exhibit and it would be wonderful if the Australian Horse Public could remember some of these and to dispel the myth that Horses are 'naughty or being a problem"

There are no Problem Horses, only Problem People and of 1,000 Buck Jumpers that I have met, 999 did not want to Buck. (Two this Week) So here are some classic indicators for you. They all do all of these or some.

They attempt to Tell Riders that they don't want to go to the Arena

They Jig Jog upon arrival at the arena.

Their Respiration Rate increases

Rushing or running in one or more Paces, depending upon the injury type.

The Vast majority of Horses with rear end Veterinary Problems NEVER SHOW LAMENESS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



  • Coming behind the Leg and especially just prior to the Canter aid

  • They absolutely hate having a Head Set and will go down to please and come back up for relief

  • They are almost always 'Crooked' and that crookedness tells us which side the Problem is.
    Straighten them and they can become frantic.

  • Being put "Over the Back" and "truly round" makes them more unsound fast.

  • They almost always do not have a rhythm.

  • They often have irregular muscle development.

  • They are often degenerated in the hind end and have way large front ends.

  • They pull themselves along by the front legs at the Canter

  • They want to go 'hollow' and 'above the Bit'

  • They often have shorter front Legs than the back

  • They are often 'Rump High'

  • They are often 'straight behind'

  • Their Neck is often set on their Body incorrectly.

  • There Rump often falls away downhill

  • They do not like sitting trot

  • They all go through a check list of evasions and add new one's when Mrs. HP rides and negates each.

  • They threaten to rear when most other evasions fail

  • They want to run away if the pressure keeps coming

  • They sweat more than they should. PAIN CAUSES SWEAT!!!!!!!!!!
    and much more..............................

  • AND THEY GET ULCERS. Pain causes Ulcers.



Chiro's, Physio's and Vet's are increasingly recommending our system.

Apart from the fact that they are not made like crap, they are specifically designed to be actually adjust them to suit varying Horses that have different Veterinary problems and different conformation.

Buy them here

The Rehabilitation of such Horses should take Months and be progressive. Done in soft sand, preferably without a lunge rein on but in a round Pen however, if you must lunge in the open (say on an arena) this is how you rig the lunge line.....

Email me for the free 145 Page E-Book.

If you are interested in watching 27 Veterinary afflicted Horses speaking with us in order to be saved, go buy this.




7 HOURS AND FEATURING 27 HORSES CRYING OUT FOR HELP. An in depth look at what not to buy and why, what Horses are pre-disposed to unsoundness and why.

If you ever consider Buying a Performance Horse, watch this Production and it may save you Thousands!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


If you put the hard yards in and adopt the right training systems, under 3 Months is eminently possible. Mrs. HP's new Green Horse. 17th Sept. 2011






Philip Karl has aimed a sustained attack on the German Dressage Federation for it's systems and promotes his way as being better. By chance, I have been able to take a look at his system, as it relates to the well being of the Dressage Horse and I have found the following.

  1. That it promotes some Horses to think 'upwardly' and indeed become Rearers and
  2. That it negatively impacts against the Muscular preparation of the Dressage Horse and indeed, degenerates the required supportive Muscle Groups and could even promote Veterinary unsoundness.
  3. I have had at least 10 Horses through my Hands, mostly Rearing or Bolting, due to this system, in the Hands of Owners.

  4. Any system that promotes "Hollowness' in the Dressage Horse, progressively weakens the Veterinary defenses of the Horse!!


" For a system to be deemed worthy, IT MUST be easily used by normal Horse Owners. The Phillip Karl system fails completely and I have NEVER seen positive results, only negative. (remembering that I watch thousands of Dressage Horses as I strap for my Wife)

2016 Horse of the Year.


Here are some Photos from a Client of mine.


During Karl system

Video filmed in Perth, clearly showing Horses 'above the Bit' and 'resistant'


Then, after a few Months of my Running Reins system.




Side Reins to Running Reins ....but with the 44 Page Training E-Book that comes with them.


Side Reins Muscle Production on this Young Horse prior

Same Horse with our system (note the colour where the Side Reins probably caused Ulcers in the Young Horse.



We have found over the years that not all Horses are the same and that some need different adjustments for effective help. This can be caused by different conformation or different Veterinary problems.

Draw Reins are anti productive on such Horses and actually cause problems.


This piece of equipment SHOULD BE USED if you want to ride these Horses in an accessory which can be needed to force Veterinary afflicted Horses to go the extra yard to strengthen their weaknesses.

In fact, I use the Market Harborough as a diagnosis tool for suspect Horses for typically, such Horses are hiding and compensating for their problems and it is only when they are encouraged to really be 'round or deeper' that the problem areas will show themselves so the Horse can be helped. Vets cannot diagnose these problems.


Many of the isssues that effect Horses and look like true Veterinary problems, are in fact caused by incorrect riding and in particular 'above the Bit', where Horses go around 'hollow' and degenerating their driving and carrying muscles amongst many other things. The running reins and Market Harborough are often the saviour for these issues.


Yes they can and we do it regularly, as do some of my Readers. (providing real Veterinary has been eliminated of course, such as bone chips and the like)

Remember, with any athletic preparation, the use of this equipment must be sustained and over a long period. Think about that and don't be one of the thousands that think they can fix these things with a few rides :(

Hi John,

Good to have you back.
This is more of a vet problem than a horse problem.
I have written to you before about my mare Melody. She failed at harness breaking but has been great under saddle. I've finally realised however that I need more time to spend with my other horsey partner of eight years and need to sell my mare. Melody is sweet, easy to catch, handle, trim (barefoot), float, worm, vacc. Quiet temperament but with good stamina and enough go and big enough stride to make a nice pony club eventer. At 14hh she is a great size for a small adult or teen. What more could anybody ask? Well, more. My mare has a locking stifle- but only when she is on rich pasture/clover. I have had her for over a year now and it is quite clear that there is a correlation between what she eats and her stifle locking.
When I first saw this problem with my mare I searched the internet and spoke to my vet and was told all the usual stuff- build up her hind end, keep her fit, you can treat it with hormone injections, cut the ligaments etc. Then a woman who gave me some lessons told me it could be because of too much protein. Well I kept my mare out of the pasture and gave her year old grass hay. Guess what, the locking stopped. Started again if she went on our rich Kinglake pasture. I control it through diet. All through winter this year it didn't show. All through spring it didn't show. As soon as the horses went onto a newly rejuvinated pasture with lots of clover it started locking again. I took her off and fed her hay and it stopped.
Now I am trying to sell my mare. I am being up front with people for the sake of my mare. I don't want her being punished for being 'naughty' if her stifle locks again. One woman was really keen but her vet told her that she would have to keep my mare in peak condition in order to prevent the stifle lock. She pulled out and was so disappointed. The information was not even true. My mare has never been in peak condition and her stifle only locks when she is on rich pasture- and even when it is locking it isn't serious and doesn't prevent her being ridden. My gripe is the ignorance of vets. How many horses out there are suffereing needlessly with locking stifles and how many owners are watching helplessly when all they need to do is give their horses a diet similar to a founder prevention diet and get them off the rich pasture they were never designed to be on in the first place. I can't explain why the diet has an effect. My vet can't explain it either. I'm not saying it will work for all horses but it might just work for some and they are currently missing out. Please spread the word. A recent check on the internet showed me only one breif reference to protein and I'm still at a loss to explain WHY?

I have a lovely young mare for sale but for the price some people would rather buy a TB with mental problems, a standy that can't canter (and a good chance they also had stifle probs at some time in their lives), or a horse with an iron mouth.

Anyway, remember. If there are stifle problems try changing the diet first.




"Wear your Heart in your Hands"