The Welz Trim: Healthy Trimming Basics

  1. Heels are trimmed to a natural, comfortable low heel.

  2. Bars are trimmed to be straight and tapered.

  3. As little sole is removed as is possible (“new sole” a.k.a. “live sole” is a guideline)!

  4. Wall flares are addressed as necessary.

  5. The outer wall is rolled (Mustang Roll). For hard terrain, entire wall should be rolled, toe to heel. For soft terrain, roll as desired.

  6. Every hoof is approached with the concept of “Target Trimming” - trim that which is most important first, and only that - one item at a time. This means that every single part of the hoof is not always trimmed; focus only on what is necessary.


    All hooves in these photographs were first-time trims by James Welz. All hooves in the photos above are front hooves. All horses were previously barefoot, with fairly healthy hooves. All horses were sound before and after trimming.

    The bare hooves are barometers of the horse's state of health and its current living conditions, and if something is wrong, you need to know, and you need to fix those problems. Any young horse given a healthy lifestyle and trimmed correctly can remain barefoot in just about any performance career. If you are told the horse needs shoes, ask why. If your current farrier can't provide a barefoot trim that keeps the feet healthy, find someone who can.


    Educate yourself and empower yourself to be in control of the health of your horse's feet.

No hour of life is wasted that is spent in the saddle.  ~ Winston Churchill