Manual Equine Therapy

Lamesness Rehabilitation - Symmetry

Leslie Batistich

Lameness rehabilitation is a full-body, symmetry balancing and re-conditioning process. For example, if your horse is experiencing a lameness issue in or near the hoof, you will also notice muscle changes in the haunches, back, shoulder and neck area. Atrophy and weakness on one side and stiffness on the other can occur from lower limb pain compensation and stall confinement. Therefore, effective rehabilitation requires our awareness of how a lameness can affect everything from hoof balance to saddle fit.


It’s common for a lame horse to manifest pain and inflammation in other areas of the body in addition to the source area of the lameness. Tuning our radar to notice symmetry imbalances while we are grooming and working with our horse, empowers us to become more proactive in early detection and in adjusting the horses’ training or rehab schedule to facilitate healing.


Narelle Stubbs’ video slide presentation through the Michigan State MHU programoffers relevant information and demonstration photos on this ‘full body’ approach for lameness rehab.


One of the important issues that is addressed approximately 40 minutes into Narelle’s presentation, is to be diligent in monitoring and gradually progressing workout time to insure the horse is worked evenly in both directions and is not overworked. She reiterates the importance of symmetry awareness and demonstrates ‘carrot’ stretch techniques to reduce stiffness and weakness asymmetry in the horses’ core.
Have you worked with a Farrier, Vet, Trainer or Equine Physio Therapist, who is outstanding in lameness rehabilitation? If so please enter their name, profession, and location in the following form:

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