Friday, 4 August 2017

All About ... Horse Walkers and Treadmills

Horse walkers are often used as an alternative to ridden work, however, they also have a place as a rehabilitation aid.  Although the horse walks on a circle it is believed that this is very like the type of exercise wild or grass kept horses have when moving around grazing.  An hour walking a day can help to maintain pre-injury fitness and will improve general muscle tone.  

The walker allows a horse to build up muscle without the additional weight of a rider and so can be used following box rest.  They can, in some situations, be used to maintain the fitness of an injured horse.

Treadmills for horses are most often used as a rehabilitation aid.  They are useful for re-educating a horse to walk correctly as they recover from injury.  This is because the treadmill ensures that the horse takes strides of even length!   The horse however, does have to learn to balance and this uses different muscles to those used for walking off the treadmill.  

The treadmills provide a non-slip and cushioned surface which can be beneficial when reintroducing work following injury and can be used for speeds from walk to gallop.  Treadmills also allow you to carefully monitor the horse whilst exercising eg: heart rate.

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Until next time!


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