We ask a lot of our horses – both mentally and physically, and in order for our horses to give us their best performance – whether that performance is a clean show jumping round or a few steady hours on the trail, we need to take care of them. This is where body work can come in, helping horses get more comfortable and move more freely.
The term body work encompasses a number of alternative treatments, from acupuncture and chiropractic to massage and myofascial release. Using different types of body work can help with major medical situations, such as recovering from an injury, but these techniques can also be very useful for horses that “just aren’t right.” Those times you feel something is wrong when you are riding, but may not be able to exactly pinpoint the problem.
That’s why I called Dr. Patricia Blakeslee of Unionville Equine Associates to work on Bandit. Dr. Blakeslee is an equine chiropractor and acupuncturist, as well as a veterinarian. She has been practicing veterinary medicine for 27 years and has been adjusting horses as a chiropractor for 18 years.
Body work and specifically, equine chiropractic work, is often viewed with skepticism and perhaps some misunderstanding, especially within the medical community. Dr. Blakeslee explains the theory and science behind using chiropractic work on horses as well as points out where some of the misunderstanding occurs.
* The rest of Bandit’s session with Dr. Blakeslee, as well as several other videos on Equine Body Work are available in Training Journals. If you are already a member, log in to view them. If you are not yet a member, Click Here to start a Free Trial.
**If you are a local reader and are interested in having Dr. Blakeslee work on your horse, visit her website or call her office at 610-932-6800.