Sophie Vertigan performing Equine Muscle Release Therapy on Stilts, a horse owned by Toby Cavers.
Keeping Your Horse at Peak Performance is a Balancing Act
We all want our horses to show and work to the best of their ability. Consequently we are always searching for aids and treatments to better that performance as well as become as healthy and happy as they can be. We want our horses to enjoy what they do and make us look good doing it.
In today's equine life, there are so many new treatments available, it is tough to decide just what our horses need, don't need and will benefit from the most. We could spend a fortune in diagnosis. This is where a thorough knowledge and understanding of your horse comes in. Not to mention working closely with your vet for a proper assessment. Many of the treatments offered for horses are done outside the realm of our veterinarians. Many veterinarians are quite willing to work with the specialists in other areas of treatment for our horses, but it should be done so with the full knowledge and co-operation of a vet for the overall well-being of our horses.
That being said, here is Toby Caver's story of how EMRTTM (Equine Muscle Release Therapy) through the services provided by Sophie Vertigan of Balancing Acts has helped Toby's horse.
Meet Stilts and Toby. This is Toby's 8-year-old thoroughbred. Toby purchased Stilts four years ago direct from the track. He came to her unsure, but willing to learn. After three years of working with Stilts, Toby noticed he still carried his head in "giraffe" position and seemed reluctant to move forward at anything more than a slow walk.
"Prior to the muscle release therapy, Stilts looked like three pieces -- a head, body and rump -- but not well connected," said Toby.
Toby wanted the best for horse and most of all wanted him comfortable and happy while working. She had heard about muscle release therapy and last year decided to give it a try enlisting the help of Sophie Vertigan, an EMRTTM practitioner, Bowen Therapist and riding instructor.
First, jut what is Equine Muscle Release Therapy?
EMRT™ is a very dynamic technique which signals the brain to initiate the healing process. These signals are sent via specialized nerve cells found in the fascia or covering of the muscle. By applying the moves over the muscles in specific areas in a sequence, the body receives the message to take the spasm out of that muscle. This gives the body a chance to achieve balance that promotes well-being of the whole horse. EMRT™ is not a replacement for Veterinary advice.
EMRT™ consists of gentle rolling, sequential moves over specific points of the muscular fascia. Energy flows are stimulated & balanced, encouraging the body to reset & heal itself, producing rapid & lasting relief from pain & discomfort.
Non-invasive & non-manipulative, EMRT™ helps bring about a positive response to muscular, respiratory, organic & glandular conditions. It is an ideal way to help the body function at an optimal level of health & efficiency & can be used as a preventative in the same way that sports massage is used by athletes.
Equine Muscle Release Therapy can be used in conjunction with, & complements, other healing modalities, such as herbal medicine, as it activates the body’s powerful natural self-healing ability.
What Sort of Problems can EMRT™ Help With?
- Muscular, tendon & ligament strains
- Skeletal/structural problems
- Injury and illness, speeds recovery and recuperation through improved circulation
- Colds/flu, bladder/kidney infections, dry/cracked hooves, wound healing
- Removal of toxins & Lactic acid build-up associated with such conditions as 'tying up"
- Degenerative and Growth disorders
- Mental/emotional problems caused by fear, tenseness
- Prevention of problems or simply as a 'treat' for your horse
Now, Stilts has had four sessions with Sophie in the past year. The first was a mini-session and ultimately what convinced Toby to continue the therapy.
Sophie had been in the area last year at a local ride when Toby started discussing how Stilts looked with her. Although Stilts was well fed and exercised, his rib cage was very visible. Sophie took a closer look at Stilts, performing a brief muscle release therapy session on him. A little while later, they returned to Stilts to show someone else how visible his rib cage was only to discover that you could barely see his rib cage now.
"I felt as if I was imagining things, " said Toby. "His rib cage was suddenly barely visible. It was like he gained 100lbs in minutes".
While this type of visible result is amazing, even more dramatic changes in the horse can be seen over time with consistent sessions.
"Visible changes happen often at the first session. Horses filling out, hunter bumps softening and hip angles becoming far less angular, veins raising because of increased circulation and jugular reflux.I have a client whose horse has been dragging his back legs to the point his feet have worn square at the toe. After the first session he stopped dragging his feet," tells Sophie.
Stilts now looks like he is altogether one horse. Not three pieces of a horse. His pigeon-shaped chest is starting to fill out and the giraffe-head is levelling out. Stilts is more balanced, more relaxed and more willing to move forward and work.
Toby commented, "My belief is that there is no miracle cure, but this muscle release treatment has helped me move forward in my journey with my OTTB."
Sophie Vertigan has been riding for 30 years, the later of that in eventing. She believes "
Balanced bodies can function at optimum level. These modalities can help regain balance in order to reach your goals in life, health and riding. These goals could range from relief of pain to competing at your peak in high level sports.All three of these elements together or alone are Balancing Acts."
To learn more about Sophie and EMRTTM visit her website www.balancingacts.ca .For more information on EMRTTM, you can also visit www.emrt.net.au
Sophie is available by appointment. She is also available to do barn demonstrations for a nominal fee.