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Educational

How Aquatic Therapy Benefits Equine Athletes

Why Choose Aquatic Therapy for Equine Rehab and Conditioning?

Equine athletes exercising while utilizing the properties of water see greater improvements in rehabilitation, strength and conditioning. By eliminating the weight of the rider and the impact of the horse’s own weight, the concussion forces from the ground are greatly reduced. This results in decreased wear and tear on the horse’s body and allows them to condition and rehabilitate without “pounding” their joints. Underwater treadmills provide cardiovascular workouts without adding stresses to the musculoskeletal system.

Overall Benefits of Utilizing an Underwater Treadmill System:

    • •  Improves performance
    • •  Encourages soft tissue mobilization
    • •  Develops core strength
    • •  Reduces recovery time by 50-60%
    • •  Improves muscle tone and strength
    • •  Reduces weight bearing by 40-60% when used with increased water depth
    • •  Reduces swelling and increases circulation
    • •  Improves length of stride
    • •  Reduces concussion
    • •  Improves fitness and stamina
    • •  Improves flexibility and suppleness
    • •  Promotes muscle development
    • •  Encourages lateral flexion of the back

    Utilizing the properties of water (buoyancy, viscosity, hydrostatic pressure, and temperature) allows a horse to complete a good work out without the ground force reactions through the hoof and leg and reduces the chances of injury/re-injury.

    A case study conducted at Hilltop Farm, utilizing the AquaPacer by Hudson Aquatic Systems, shows how the benefits of adding underwater treadmill workouts to training and conditioning regimens improved results. Three horses were studied for three weeks, each completing 20 minutes of exercise in the AquaPacer daily. The results show that each horse built considerable muscle throughout their entire body and showed improvement in range of motion through the fore and hind limbs. The benefits continued to be evident several months after the study concluded.

    Read Full Case Study Here

    Learn more about the benefits and features of the AquaPacer underwater treadmill.