Equine Sports Massage Therapy
is a performance booster. It helps keep your horse at his best and extend his athletic career. Top level horses of all disciplines throughout the USA reap the benefits of regular massage therapy. Massage is not to replace proper veterinary care. In case of injury, lameness or any condition you are not sure about, a vet check is advisable. I do not diagnose, prescribe or do surgery. I am not a veterinarian. Sports massage therapy is used for human athletes around the world. And why?
Because it helps prevent injury from the sport, increases or maintains each athlete’s natural ability, helps them stay flexible helps to prevent injury and reduce down time when they are injured.
Benefits of Equine Massage Therapy:
There’s lots more.....
"Fascia is a three dimensional web that surrounds every bone, muscle, nerve, organ, and vessel down to the cellular level from head to foot or, head to hoof. It is comprised of elastin, collagen and a fluid ground substance. Restrictions can develop in fascia from trauma, poor posture and repetitive training. These restrictions can create pain, swelling, misalignments, poor muscular biomechanics, decreased range of motion, decreased strength and lameness. Fascia loses it's pliability, collagen becomes dense and fibrous and the ground substance can solidify. Standard tests will not show a fascial restriction.
Myofascial Release is a hands on, whole body manual therapy technique addressing the fascial system. MFR is used to elongate the fascial tissue with a 90-120 second gentle pressure into the restriction or tissue barrier. After releasing through several barriers the tissue will become soft and pliable. The pressure will be taken off pain sensitive areas and motion restored." --Tamara Thomas, Physical Therapist, lecturer and expert myofascial release therapist.
Red Light Therapy- Concerning muscle tissues
Photonic red light therapy has other uses of which are out of my scope of practice. Concerning muscle and connective tissue ... this is why I am using it. It won't harm the animal or burn the skin. For other uses of this therapy it would take a veterinarian prescription and diagnosis. To aid in equine massage therapy it's a great addition to the tool box!
Since the early '80s, light therapy (sometimes called red light therapy, (Phototherapy, LED therapy, DPL, Infrared therapy, Photon Therapy, or Red/Infrared Therapy) has been used in the horse world for treating equine concerns and helping owners and trainers keep their horses in top shape. LED light therapy is really a way to help the body heal itself using specific wavelengths of light that are absorbed by a photo acceptor, cytochrome c oxidase within the mitochondria of the cell. The energy (photons) from the lights increases the energy within the cell and that speeds up the healing process. The lights must be specific wavelengths and must be delivered at a specific dosage. Two wavelengths are used in the light therapy pads, a visible red and a near infrared wavelength. Using both red and near infrared lights is beneficial because the wavelengths are absorbed by different depths of tissue. The combination of the two work in concert to provide benefits for soft tissue injuries, inflammation, ligament soreness, tendon problems, sore backs, splints, strains, stifle issues, sprains, swelling, shoulder pain, hip pain, sore backs, sore necks, , arthritis pain and for trigger points and acupuncture points. Visible red light (660nm) is absorbed by skin layers very efficiently and is best for uses such as stimulating trigger and acupuncture points . Near infrared light (880nm) penetrates to a deeper level has been used to treat concerns of tendons, ligaments, joints and muscle. It is repeatedly reported that when the cell is "re-energized" it accepts no more energy, so you cannot cause harm and it is reported to have no effect on healthy tissue. The body will not absorb what it cannot use.
Taping can be effective in reducing swelling, inflammation, soreness and stiffness. It can be useful for a horse who exhibits tense or shortened muscles, joint swelling, ligament/tendon or other soft tissue damage including trigger points, scar tissue and fascia. Helps to increase lymphatic flow, blood flow, relieves superficial pain receptors, helps increase proprioception, supports joints and soft tissue, helps reduce muscle fatigue. It helps to improve gliding ability of muscles during movement. Kinesiology taping can also help restore full range of motion. It allows for full movement while offering support and stability. I am FMT RockTape Equine certified. I prefer RockTape. Due availability other brands may be used. I also employ RockBlades or IASTM (Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization). Specially designed for use on the body, they are comfortable, help with addressing tissue and fascia release. A great addition to my tool box!
Saddle Fitting and Adjustments
I do offer saddle fit checks and for both Western and English saddles along with tracings. For wool flocked saddles I am able to perform simple flocking adjustments. I do not drop panels and replace flocking, repair saddles in any way or do any leather work on them of any kind. During my time as a collaborator with County Saddlery I have been trained to do such. I use a good quality wool. Saddle fitting sessions include static and dynamic fitting so, access to an arena is required.
At the Bates Saddles Conference in 2019 in KY I was also trained to fit the Easy Change Fit Solution. This system uses various size adjustable gullets, and risers to achieve an excellent fit for many horses. Now known as HART. Horse and Rider Technology I encourage you all to check out that website. There is so much there I can't duplicate only share. From ElastiFlex tree, Performance Panel Technology, Comfort Seat Technology, CAIR Cushion System and more to ride better, have better connection, freer movement and better performance by your horse. I am very excited to represent this saddle fitting system and design! I will share a few graphics. Please visit that website to learn more! www.horseandridertechnology.com
Massage, myofascial release, red light taping, proper saddle fit.... it all does so much for your horse to perform his best, address problem areas, helps restore full function.
Suggestion? Schedule regular massage. Schedule a saddle fit check. Your horse will appreciate it!
Jeanette James Equine Sports Massage Therapy LLC
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