WHAT IS EQUINE
SPORTS THERAPY?

Equine sports therapy is the therapeutic application of professional sports massage techniques applied to the horse. A thorough understanding of anatomy and the interaction of bones, joints and muscles are the basis of the proven physical and mental therapy that is the art of massage.

An EMST looks at the horse as a whole and attempts to consider all possible causes and effects of any tension while interpreting a horses reactions and expressions.

DOES YOUR HORSE DO OR SHOW SIGNS OF ANY OF THE FOLLOWING: 
  • SYMPTOM

    Dislikes being groomed

  • SYMPTOM

    Prefer one rein

  • SYMPTOM

    Show lateral stiffness

  • SYMPTOM

    Reluctant to canter on one lead

  • SYMPTOM

    Hollow backed

  • SYMPTOM

    High headed

  • SYMPTOM

    Head shaking

  • SYMPTOM

    Bucking

  • SYMPTOM

    Cold backed when tacked up

  • SYMPTOM

    Lack of poll flexion and bend

  • SYMPTOM

    Head tilting

  • SYMPTOM

    Have an uneven stride length

  • SYMPTOM

    Holding the tail to one side

  • SYMPTOM

    Excessive rolling
     

All of the above can be signs of pain and discomfort and should be investigated.

MASSAGE SHOULD BE PART OF THE ROUTINE CARE FOR THE HORSE

Used during training and pre and post competition massage keeps muscles healthy, builds up those that may have wasted, maintains strength and suppleness and prevents atrophy even during a period of box rest or restricted work. After exertion massage minimises stiffness and speeds repair to tissue damaged as an inevitable result of physical stress and fatigue. Passive stretches help to keep or restore joints and muscles to full working capacity.

BENEFITS OF EQUINE SPORTS THERAPY

In the horse, the various massage and stretching techniques enable the horse to perform to its full potential by:

  • Increasing and improving circulation

  • Enhance muscle tone

  • Relax muscle spasm

  • Prevent and relieve adhesions

  • Increase the range of movement

Massage can benefit the well being of the animal, release tension and aid mental relaxation. In the event of an Injury, massage is of great benefit to aid recovery and prevent atrophy (wasting) of muscles.

MASSAGE ALSO HELPS TO PREVENT INJURY

To understand why we need to know more about muscles, is that more than 60% of the horses body weight is muscle. Small muscle injuries can take up to 90 days to become apparent (by a change in attitude, decreased performance and lameness) by which time they may have caused more serious injury. Prompt attention to these ‘minor’ muscle injuries not only enhances a horse’s performance but also may prevent future problems. Muscle tightening is transmitted from one muscle group to another, so for example, shoulder tension may be transmitted to the muscles of the forearm, resulting in extra stress being placed on the tendons. Muscle may also enlarge with tension.

CONTACT US TODAY TO SET UP AN EVALUATION FOR YOUR EQUINE ATHLETE!

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