Horses have become domesticated and selectively bred for various sporting disciplines. Historically horses have demonstrated their ability to carry weight on their backs, although little is known about the adaptations of the musculoskeletal system to the various pressures placed upon the body when working under saddle with a rider or harness. These pressures can sometimes cause biomechanic alterations, discomfort and compensation of the musculoskeletal system reflected as muscle spasm, asymmetries and misalignments. McTimoney Manipulation and Sports Massage can be used to aid recovery, increase comfort and therefore improve the overall performance of your horse.
Misalignments and muscle tension can be described as acute or chronic. Acute problems are caused by a sudden trauma, whereas chronic problems typically develop over time and are often due to compensations.
Acute musculoskeletal problems can be caused by:
Chronic musculoskeletal problems can be caused by:
It can be difficult to determine whether your horse is suffering from musculoskeletal problems but it is important for owners, riders and trainers to recognise the early physical and behavioural symptoms associated with a developing issue. Initially the horse may compensate for a problem quite effectively but over time muscle tension and misalignments of the skeletal system may affect the comfort, soundness and performance of your horse.
Symptoms of musculoskeletal issues can include:
Equine Physical Therapist
MSc (Animal Manipulation)
BSc (Biological Sciences)
Pg Dip (ESM)