I am a fully qualified and insured

EQUINE SPORTS MASSAGE THERAPIST

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Experience

I’m Louise, an equine sports massage therapist who has had a lifelong passion for horses. As an equestrian, I have ridden since I was four years old, owned a number of horses, and worked in a variety of equine-related industries.

Following BHS 1-3 exams, work and theatre experience at Walmsley’s Veterinary Practice (now Liphook Equine Hospital), I studied Equine Science at Writtle University College. Following Writtle, I worked for a variety of yards (livery, racing, private, and eventing); an equine insurance company, and Albion Saddlers.

After spending time in advertising and marketing, I realised I needed to get back to horses. I moved to North Devon in 2018, and shortly after completed a course with the College of Animal Physiotherapy in equine sports massage and passed with distinction.

It was time for Elkay Equestrian to open and for me to begin my career as an equine sports massage therapist.

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Goals

My primary objective is to provide you with the best care for your horses through my knowledge of equine massage therapy techniques. I want to help them function at their best, to feel as healthy and active as possible. My knowledge of equine anatomy and biomechanics is extensive, and I continue learning through CPD courses.

The goal of my business is to make sports massage therapy available to every horse, regardless of whether they are competitors, happy hackers, recovering from injuries, or retired.

Both horses and their owners / riders can benefit from the increased productivity and enjoyment I provide.

Having horses in our lives is a real blessing and brings us a great deal of joy. Giving them something back is really important to me. 

My long-term goal is to gain equine physiotherapy training – a four-year programme of study that will allow me to add physiotherapy to my current equine therapy practice.

 

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Techniques

As a qualified equine massage therapist, I will focus primarily on treating areas of soft tissue tension, muscle spasm, friction and heat.

A static and dynamic assessment, palpation, massage, and stretching are all used to identify any problematic areas.

As part of your horse’s treatment, I will try to consider all of the possible causes and effects of any musculoskeletal problems, while interpreting both the horse’s active and passive reactions.

After every appointment, a full report will be given to you which will include recommendations for any exercises and stretches you can do on by yourself before the next appointment.

The following massage techniques will be used:

  • Effleurage
  • Petrissage
  • Tapotement
  • Friction
  • Phototherapy
  • Stretching exercises

CPD and further education

I am an active member of the IAAT – The International Association of Animal Therapists. The IAAT’s primary objective is to promote excellence in animal therapy. They provide a resource for veterinary professionals, owners and insurance companies to have access to a register of trained professionals.

For professional membership, the IAAT’s members must be qualified, insured, and also take regular Continuing Professional Development (CPD) in the form of industry courses and lectures. We must complete at least 25 hours per year to continue as an IAAT member.

This membership ensures that I keep up to date with any new / emerging industry knowledge, scientific research and techniques; and ensures I practice within the Veterinary Act (1966). An equine sports massage therapist needs to be continually updating their knowledge-bank with annual CPD courses and lectures to offer the very best service to your horses.

Some examples of CPD courses to date:

Equine Neurophysiology

Equine Conformation & Performance

Phototherapy for Animals

Training Horses from an Anatomical Perspective

Behaviours Indicating Pain in the Ridden Horse

Equine Conformation Biomechanics & Beyond 

 

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Fully insured with Balens

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equine sports massage therapist elkay equestrian

What are the Benefits of Equine Sports Massage Therapy?

Why does your horse need an equine sports massage therapist?

Horses are athletes and just like a human athlete they will likely benefit immensely by including sports massage therapy as part of their regular maintenance routine.

Whether your horse is in regular training, competition, or a happy-hacker, it’s likely that they will have accumulated muscular stresses and strains.

It’s important that you choose to work with a qualified and insured equine sports massage therapist. We can legally work with your horse and are regularly recommended by veterinary practitioners as an aid within a rehabilitation programme.

Please note that if your horse is under veterinary treatment, you will need to get approval from your vet, just ask me for a referral form.*

*Equine massage is never intended to replace the care of your veterinarian. It is not within a massage therapist’s scope of practice to diagnose or treat illness or injury.

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