Kelly has completed her training with Centaur Equine Massage Training and is now a qualified practitioner. Gaining the qualification of Holistic Equine Massage Practitioner which is accredited by UK Rural Skills and passed with distinction.
If you have ever enjoyed a massage you will know, having sympathetic hands working over your aching or tight limbs and back brings instant relief and relaxation. Now your horses can also benefit from this too
Equine massage is the hands-on application for accessing the overall condition of the horse and relieving tense, tight and sensitive muscles.
Since horses can’t communicate with us verbally, the massage therapist has to have good horse sense and skills to be able to assess the horse’s response and work sympathetically where needed.
Kelly practices by always putting the horse’s comfort and welfare first. Giving her the ability to concentrate on relieving tension and increasing range of motion. Spending that little extra time to ensure your horse gets the most for a massage treatment.
Horses which work and play hard are the most susceptible to problems. Sports such as racing, eventing and endurance tend to have a large amount of injuries. Because most of these horses enjoy their job, they often perform without showing discomfort until it is too late.
Most soft tissue problems are accumulative, except when affected by trauma, accidents or illnesses. If all owners and trainers learned how to access the overall condition, they might be able to pick up on these problems when they are subtle and call the vet in for a diagnosis.
Horses in pain will often adapt their movement, developing a new way of going to accommodate the
discomfort. A horse that is protecting a sore muscle will force others to overwork to compensate thereby losing their freedom of movement. This may result in a drop in performance, a behavioural issue or a physical problem.
My aim is to restore the horse’s freedom of movement by reducing the resistance to motion. Skilled massage therapists can detect and act on subtle changes at an early stage, maintaining a horse’s performance level.
Although it is the massage therapists job to recognise the symptoms of muscular pain, massage can also help healthy horses by keeping their performance levels and maintaining correct movement.
Incorporating massage into a regular training programme is beneficial. It has recently been proved scientifically that massage can increase the range of motion. In a healthy, sound horse, that means enhanced movement, which is essential to the disciplines requiring elegance, strength and style, such as dressage.
Increased range of motion also adds to better stamina, which benefits racing and endurance. If you can
imagine even a minor lengthening of the stride of a racehorse, how many lengths that would be by the end of the race or how easier the ground would be covered on a cross country course.
Although equine massage is never a substitute for veterinary medicine, it can make a big difference in the health, performance and motion of a horse. It will also help to encourage a more productive life.
The veterinary act 1966 which was put into place for the safeguarding and welfare equines, requires permission must be given by the horses vet before treatment can take place.