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         Equine Lucky Star Wellness

Jessica Liebman - C..E.S.M.T

                     Welcome to Equine Wellness through

                             Heal​ing ​Therapeutic Sports Massage 

​Some Important Benefits of Equine Massage 

Pain Relief :    It is well known that massage therapy reduces and relieves muscle tension Areas of scar tissue can also benefit from massage. Massage helps loosen scar tissue gradually helping the horse move more freely and reducing any associated pain.Massage and stretching can help restore  a horse's mobility after an injury by reducung tension as collagen fibers heal and realighn themselves post trauma.

Improved Locomotor Function : Massage can be valuable addition to a rehabilitation program. By loosening tightened connective tissue, massage helps improve a horses overall locomotor function .The results are easy to see and are often visible immediately after a session . 

In a study at the Royal Veternary College in Hertfordshire,UK massage iof the caudel muscles of the equine hind limbs significatly increased passive and active hind limb protection .

Improved Circulation : The compression and release pattern of equine massage can help promote  circulation in the superficial areas of the limbs. It's particularly useful for stallbound horses that develop lower leg Edema by promoting blood and lymph circulation 

Relaxation : Many horses visibly relax during a massage session by dropping thier head,licking or chewing ,cocking a hind leg , swaying with the massage therapist's movements  and eyes going in to sleep zone.. A  2016 Study on the effect of massage on the heart rate of Arabian racehorses,measured the heart rate and variability of horses during race horses' emotional state. Each group trained 6 days per week, and the experimental group suggested that " massage may be effectively used the racehorses more relaxed and calm.

DISCLAIMER : Equine body work therapy is not a substitute for or to solely treat or diagnose any medical condition , or to replace the care of a veteranarian 

Accupressure Sports ​Massage Types  

Basic Massage : These techniques​ involve applying firm pressure to muscles and other underlying soft tissues such as the fascia or connective tissues surrounding the muscles.The muscles are typically warmed up  prior to deeper work: strokes used might imclude percussion ( gentle tapping to wark up the muscles and encourage blood flow ) Effleurage ( light to firm stroking ), and compression ( application of deeper pressure ) 

Trigger-Point Therapy : Trigger points , often described as " muscle knots "are sensitive spots caising painin soft tissues. Although the precise underlaying cause of these painful points isn't known,many experts beileve they're likely associated with a small patch of contracted muscle . The chronic contraction causes constricted blood supply to the area, a build up of lactic acid , and an eventual vicious circle of spasm and pain. 

A skilled therapist can identify a trigger point as a small , firm area within the muscle , where if pressure is applied directly to that point it can result in direct pain, small

 ( sometimes visible ) , spasms or twitches , and/or pain refferred to another location 

Trigger points can occur as the result of hard work ,stress , or injury. When practicing trigger -point therapy ,your massage therapist applies direct pressure to relax the muscle , release lactic acid ,relieve spasms ,encourage blood flow , and improve oxygen the oxygen supply.

MFR:  (myofascial release) Fascia is a dense , strong tissue that surrounds and supports structures in the body ,including muscle ,bone,nerves , and the internal organs. Myofascia refers specifically to fascia surrounding the muskoskeletal system - it is the strong ,white stringy stuff you peel away when preparing chicken breast .

In a normal horse , fascis provides support , but it's relaxed and soft , causing no restrictions to muscular contraction or joint movement . Fascia can cause issues. however, when it becomes tight and restrictive as the result of trauma, disease ,or just plain hard endurance work.

A therapist trained in MFR will recognize these areasof restriction and employ stretching and manipulation techniques to release this tension and restore free movement. Some MFR Techniques may cross over with trigger -point therapies by targeting trigger points within the fascia.

MLD : (Manual Lympahtic Drainage ) Edema , or fluid accumliation in the tissues , is common issue that can occur as the reslt of a variety of issues , ranging from an allergic reaction to a response to injury or simply inactivity. Picture the older senior horse on stall rest who stocks up in all four legs , or the horse with the thick plaque of edema on his belly following a severe case of hives .

In order for the edema to resolve , the fluid must be taken up by the lympahtic syatem . Natural mobilization of excess fluid can be an insuffecient process , made even more difficult because of the horse's large size. Successful resolution often depends on excrercise , which isn't always possible. Enter MLD . Therapist preforming it will begin by applying a series of massage strokes the encourage circulation in the tissues, followed by a specialized system of manipulations designed to mobilize that excess fluid and ecncourage it to travel to the lymphatic vessels so it can be cleared . compression bandages of the lower legs will often be recommended following this therapy .

Stretching : Many different types of stretching can be beneficial for increasing flexibility and joint range -of-motion , or for improving the over health of the muculoskeletal system . It is important to understand the difference dynamic and passive stretching .

Dynamic stretching ( such as a carrot stretch ) allows the horse to be involved in the "decision" about how far to stretch - making ita safer technique in untrained hands Passive stretching ( the human preforms the "streches " on the horse ) has some solid science supporting it's benefits for muscle health , but it also carries risk of injury - making it extremly important that the therapist is well trained and experienced .

Therapists preforming passive repetitive streching will guide the joints through a series of movements several times , pausing only very briefly ( one to two seconds ) at the end of each range of motion .

DISCLAIMER : Equine body work therapy is not a substitute for or to solely treat or diagnose any medical condition , or to replace THE CARE OF  VETERANARIAN 

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