Tag Archives: fatigue

Bowed Tendons and Massage

Bowed tendons are most common in horses that work at speed. The inflammation and swelling is caused by rupture of tendon fibers. Aside from speed, other contributing factors are fatigue, poor conditioning, poor footing, poor shoeing, poor conformation…

Often with veterinary problems, there is too much to worry about (icing, medication, stall rest, etc.) to think about muscle spasms and compensations that may affect the outcome of the rehabilitation. The horse may recover, but never move as well as it did before the injury. This may be a sign that there are tight muscles and body work may be the answer.

When a horse is on stall rest and coming back to work, they are often given sedation and muscle relaxers so they don’t hurt themselves and others. Muscle relaxers and pain medication will relax all the muscles and mask problems, but as soon as they wear off, all the muscles will return to their state of tension.

Along with body work, cold laser therapy is wonderful for a bowed tendon, which by definition is inflammation (either acute or chronic) of the tendon fibers. Products such as Traumeel, DMSO, and Transfer Factor can also help greatly in the recovery process.



Is Your Horse Tired?

Some forms of fatigue are obvious: the horse moves slowly, hangs his head, and seems to be struggling to work at the usual level. There is a form of fatigue that might be more difficult to recognize: If the structure of the horse is stressed repeatedly, without enough rest in between, the structure can collapse. The horse might be just fine with a certain level of stress once. But the same stress experienced over and over can cause failure. Fatigue failure of this type is a major factor in the development of arthrosis, a degenerative joint disease. If cartilage in a joint can withstand one day of stress, damage is done when repeated too often.


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