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Massage & Bodywork for Horse Wellness

A working horse’s mind and body often endure immense stress. To help them recharge and maintain their mental and physical health, we offer a variety of equine therapeutic services. Here, our Ocala vets talk about equine bodywork and how techniques like massage, myofascial release, and more help improve wellness for horses.


Equine Bodywork: What is it and why do it?

In a world where the quality of life for horses is of the utmost importance, therapeutics that focus on their physical and mental health are indispensable. Equine bodywork combines massage therapy, myofascial release, acupressure, and stretching techniques to promote relaxation, alleviate tension, and improve the health of horses.

Understanding Equine Bodywork

Equine bodywork focuses on three specific areas - anatomy, physiology, and biomechanics. The goal of this method is to target musculoskeletal imbalances, alleviate pain, and increase the overall range of motion. Trained veterinary professionals or specialists generally perform these techniques.

The Techniques Involved

Bodywork techniques can be tailored to suit your horse’s unique needs. Here are some of the key techniques used with this method:

Equine Massage Therapy

With massage therapy, your horse will undergo care using a variety of techniques, such as effleurage, petrissage, tapotement, and cross-fiber friction. These are each used to target specific muscles and areas, promoting a well-balanced response from the body in addition to relaxation.

Myofascial Release

Equine myofascial release focuses on relieving tension in the fascial tissue. This technique gently moves tissue at the surface level, releasing tight fascia. This can also be a good choice for horses who are sensitive to traditional massage.

Acupressure and Energy Flow

Based on traditional Chinese medicine, acupressure involves applying pressure to specific acupoints (points that are thought to connect to the nervous system). This can help to stimulate energy flow and restore balance in your horse.

Stretching Techniques

Stretching is a common technique used in the care of horses. With gentle stretching, you can help improve a horse's flexibility, which can prevent injuries and enhance their performance.

Why Choose Equine Bodywork?

So now that we've covered the basics of equine bodywork, why should you consider it as a part of your horse's routine care? Here are just a few benefits of these techniques:

Pain Relief & Management

Working or sport horses can experience soreness and stiffness in the muscles. Bodywork techniques can be used to provide relief for pain and discomfort, promoting quicker recovery and allowing them to perform their best.

Enhancing Range of Motion

Equine bodywork focuses on your horse's muscles and fascia (connective tissue) to help improve flexibility and range of motion. This has a goal of reducing the risk of injuries and supporting overall well-being.

Reducing Stress & Enhancing Mental Health

Horses are prone to stress and tension, much like you or I. One of the benefits of equine bodywork is the deep relaxation that your horse may experience, improving their mental and emotional state.

Improved Circulation & Nutrient Delivery

Because these techniques are very hands-on and involve manipulating the tissue, there will be an improvement in blood circulation. This can help with the delivery of oxygen and nutrients to muscles and tissues throughout the body.

Enhancing Athletic Performance

With equine bodywork, we focus on helping your horse feel their best, and this translates to better performance when they are working. Ensuring that your horse has the greatest possible life, free from pain and enriched by a sense of well-being, is an overall goal that is aligned with taking care of their mind and body as a whole.

Horse Wellness Treatments & Bodywork Techniques at Florida Equine Veterinary Associates

Our equine veterinary team in Ocala offers numerous equine therapeutic treatments that focus on helping your horse live a comfortable, pain-free life.

From acupuncture treatments for musculoskeletal disorders to cryotherapy to reduce inflammation, the services performed by our veterinary team help your horse get back to performing at its best.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding animals, or professional advice regarding equine regulations. For the diagnosis of your animal's condition and help to navigate regulations governing the care and transportation of equine animals please contact your vet.

Would you like to learn more about the services we offer to help improve your horse's quality of life? Contact Florida Equine Veterinary Associates to request a consultation.

New Patients Welcome

Florida Equine Veterinary Associates is passionate about the health of sport and performance horses. Get in touch today to book your equine athelete's first appointment.

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