We use a variety of tools and techniques to help your horse feel better.
Therapeutic Laser or Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT):
The "cold" lasers we use are a 903 nm infrared laser. Laser light has been found to stimulate tissue repair, stimulate and tonify acupressure points and promote wound healing. Infrared light is a single, powerful, coherent wavelength. As a result, laser light penetrate into the skin/tissue layers and stimulates cellular (mitochondria activity) energy and metabolic processes that promote healing and tissue regeneration. It also stimulates the release of natural pain killing chemicals within the body that facilitate long lasting pain relief. The main feature of a 'cold' laser is that while it produces changes in the cell metabolism it does not cause a thermal reaction (heat). Jeff primarily uses lasers in three capacities, 1) Traumatic wound healing, 2) Acupressure point stimulation and 3) muscle and tendon trigger point relief. There is quite a bit of research and documentation of the efficacy of LLLT for a wide range of condition. If you would like information on papers relating to any of the following conditions, please contact us. Skin and cell metabolism, Collagen synthesis, Muscle and Tendon regeneration, nerve regeneration, blood properties, vascular effects, accelerated wound healing and scar tissue formation, musculoskeletal pain, Arthritis (osteo and rheumatoid), and reproductive issues. Back to Top
If propulsion is painful, consistent impulsion is close to impossible. Small knots in a large muscle can cause major problems in your horses' ability to travel efficiently. They can also cause cumulative strain failures (especially tendons and ligaments), spinal subluxations with resulting neurological problems and decreased performance. Trigger point therapy, myofascial release and sports massage, can relieve these painful areas before they cause more extensive injuries. Another, less quantifiable but equally important benefit, is stress reduction. I believe that our patterns of horse husbandry and use are out of sync with the instincts and needs that the horse has evolved for survival over the last few thousand years. While those patterns are unlikely to change, the accumulated low-level stress is one of the underlying causes for many of our horses' problems. Just as with humans, most horses visibly relax and respond to skillful healing massage. Back to Top
It goes without saying that for any therapeutic bodywork to be effective, the feet must be correct. They must be balanced dynamically (meaning that when a horse moves, the feet land flat in a way that supports the bony column of the leg and hence the entire horse). This is sometimes difficult for even an experienced eye to see, and that is where the stop frame video evaluation is so helpful.It gives us a tool to evaluate movement at any given point in the stride to isolate where and which muscle groups are causing the problem. Balance around the biomechanical centers of rotation is also critical to prevent a cascade of other deleterious changes to the horse structure (compensatory lameness'). Usually, I prefer to work with the existing farrier to correct foot issues that are having an adverse impact on the structure and function of the horse. Ongoing maintenance is usually easier and less costly with your regular farrier. Back to Top
Correct movement of the equine spine is absolutely critical to not only the horses' function but also his perception of where its body is in time and space (propioception). Traditional methods of adjusting horses use human chiropractic techniques i.e. short lever- high velocity, specific adjustments. While there are times that equine chiropractors are useful and even necessary, I have found over the years and many hundreds of horses, that less invasive, less traumatic techniques of spinal mobilization and alignment seem to work better and last longer in a holistic approach that includes mobilization, release of soft tissue spasms and trigger points and systemic re-balancing of reactive acupressure points. Back to Top
There is no space to adequately explain the entire philosophy behind acupressure. It is a centuries old form of healing based on the principles of Traditional Chinese Medicine and relates to energy flow throughout an organism. Western medicine has recently and reluctantly admitted that while it seems to work they don't quite understand the reason. Acupressure enables us to take action systemically on specific points that are measurable with instrumentation by demonstrating a change in electrical resistance. The intent is to ensure a continuous uninterrupted flow of energy throughout the body. This energy flow, which the Orientals have called Chi or Qi, the life force, passes through the body in an electrical fashion, thereby providing and maintaining the energetic balance necessary for normal bodily function. (1) Traditional Chinese Medicine maintains that an interruption of Chi is the ultimate root of disease. Acupressure seeks to correct this imbalance before it manifests as any symptom but particularly in horses, as muscle or joint pain.
1) Dr. Marvin Cain, Acc. Diagnosis and Treatment of the Equine, Cain, 1996 Back to Top
Bach Flower Essences:
Bach Flower Essences were developed earlier this century by Dr. Edward Bach, M.B., B.S., M.R.C.S., L.R.C.P., D.P.H., a physician and homeopath, who spent his life searching for the purest methods of healing. Prepared from nonpoisonous wild flowers, their purpose is to achieve a balance between the mind, body and spirit, gently balancing the emotional upsets that give rise to physical symptoms or delay recovery from an illness. While these are not medicines, it is increasingly recognized by both medical doctors and natural therapists that the mind and emotions play a vital role in the state of health of an organism. Today, these safe, gentle essences are used worldwide by private individuals, medical and integrative health practitioners, dentists, veterinarians and healers. (2) These essences may be taken on their own or in conjunction with medical or other treatment; they will not conflict with any medications, including homeopathic remedies. It is important to note that they are NOT a medicine or intended as a substitute for veterinary treatment and no medical claims are made for them; should symptoms persist you should always consult your vet.
2) Bach, E, Bach Flower Essences for the Family, England, 1923 Back to Top