One main reason is to improve fitness. Swimming increases stamina and works the cardiovascular system. It develops muscle and can be incorporated into a training programme with other work. Your horse will become fitter aerobically and stronger muscularly without straining joints or exacerbating previous injuries.
Unlike a spa unit, the pool allows total non-weight bearing exercise.
Another reason is as a therapy, it provides exercise for an injury without the need for weight bearing. After the initial period of rest while the animal recovers, the movement of an injury can greatly reduce lesions and scar tissue, increase flexibility and return the full range of movement to the injured area.
Also it will maintain fitness whilst recovering from an injury. Convalescent time is reduced as the animal does not require building up again. They will not have lost condition to the same extent.
Additionally it interests jaded or bored horses by adding something different to their routine. Provoking a new interest in their training improves their participation. This is particularly useful in the case of animals in hard training, e.g. racing, eventing endurance and dressage.
Following a period of box rest where muscle wastage has occurred, or in certain back injuries, swimming builds up muscle and improves topline.
Youngsters benefit from swimming as there is no stress on young joints and they become confident in water.
Swimming is especially useful in the treatment of laminitis.
PRE SEASON FITNESS – We have a programme of activities that will build up your horse’s fitness before they begin hard training.
POST INJURY/CONVALESCING – Programmes using the horse walker for rehabilitation. This should be done in consultation with your own vet / physiotherapist to enable the best recovery.
Other packages can be tailored to your needs.