Prerequisites: Anatomy, Conditioning and Handling, Saddle Fit, Hoof Care, Alternative Modalities.
At Kheiron our main modality in Therapeutic Techniques is MYOFASCIAL RELEASE. We achieve this with a combination of deep tissue and acupressure massage, muscle and joint manipulation using gentle stretches, exercises and soft tissue manipulation.
In this topic, students will:
Learn/apply basic massage techniques
Learn/apply myofascial release and manipulation techniques
Perform conditioning exercises that target certain ailments
Assess movement and identify ailments
Gain a basic understanding of other modalities (e.g., energy work, structural alignment)
A: Therapeutic Techniques
A1: Overview of Therapeutic Techniques
A2: Front End & Loosening Muscles 1
A3: Hind End & Loosening Muscles 1
A4: Nerve Techniques
A5: Other Modalities
A6: Front End & Loosening Muscles 2
A7: Hind End & Loosening Muscles 2
A8: TMJ & Cranial Techniques
Myofascial Adjustment and Manipulation
The word 'myo' means muscle and 'fascia' is the connective tissue that holds the body together. Direct myofascial release, or deep tissue work, releases and stretches the restricted fascia by applying firm yet gentle constant pressure, moving slowly through the layers of fascia until the deep tissue is reached. The indirect method involves gentle stretches, and even less pressure allowing the fascia to 'unwind' itself. The gentle traction applied to the restricted fascia will result in heat and increased blood flow in the area. This allows the body's inherent ability for self correction to return, eliminating pain and restoring the optimum performance of the body. As the fascia is so extensive, key pressure points are used, similar to acupressure, to release tension and perform adjustments with the maximum of effect and the minimum of impact on the horse. One of the benefits of myofascial adjustment is that because the fascia is all connected, you can work away from the sight of pain to the benefit of the horse and with the same effective result.
Myofacial Adjustment also includes gently manipulating the joints to aid and maintain proper alignment. When the shoulders or hips, for example, are out of alignement your horse will experience pain and discomfort causing irritable behavior. When aligned properly, improvement in the animal's motion as well as their attitude will be observed almost immediately.
Acupressure Massage compliments the myofacial adjustments by soothing and working out tension in muscle groups, often the result of the horse compensating for an injury or misalignment. Gentle pressure is applied to key focus areas to release tension in the shoulders, head, neck, pelvis and more allowing the horse to promote self healing and regain their natural fluidity and motion. If a muscle group is tight, it is more susceptible to minor rips or tears. Acupressure is one of the most deceptively gentle, safe, non-invasive, and extremely powerful healing arts that has been used for humans and animals for 1000s of years.