Understanding why we need to use massage, chiropractic, acupuncture and nutrition in combination with other techniques to maximize the performance of the body, gives us many reasons why we would want to provide the same for our horses. Much can be said for the benefits of regular body care and a balanced lifestyle for both horse and rider.
To help us understand how shiatsu massage can benefit our horses, let’s take the words “emotion” and “disease” and ask what they have in common. We will find that they are related to both energy and health. The word emotion put in its proper understanding relates to dynamics; the greater the E-motion, the greater the dynamics, the greater the power and healthier the body. The greater the movement one can say, the greater the E-motion. If you observe the universe everything is moving; the sun moves, the moon moves and the wind will blow. At times the wind will bring just a gentle breeze and at other times it may bring a tornado, this is a lot of E-motion. When water moves downhill through our mountain creeks it is flowing evenly but what happens when a log jams it or we put a damn around this flow of water? The water becomes stagnant and it is no longer flowing with ease. We now have water that sits in a state of dis-ease. We can no longer drink this water, bugs live in it and fish will not survive these conditions. When you take E-motion and put it in a state of dis-ease you bring on the inevitable and this is disease.
Let’s take this concept to the performance of an animal or the human athlete. World class athletes such as those that compete at the Olympic level all use things like massage, chiropractor, acupuncture and nutrition to maintain their bodies. They utilize skills such as mental focus and visualization techniques to develop a positive image of themselves. They believe in their success and the power of the mind and body. If they are not focused and their energy is not dynamic they are not going to win the Olympics. Both human and equine athletes also share the same qualities as far as the physical and mental aspects; bone is bone; muscle is muscle; blood is blood; tissue is tissue and emotions are emotions. If a part of us becomes shut down, our E-motions and dynamics cease to operate at full capacity. Shiatsu Massage assists in reversing this state of dis-ease thus allowing the athlete to perform optimally in their sport once again. Shiatsu massage is known to be one of the most powerful healing tools in the world and by receiving regular maintenance treatments one will be able to deal with the stresses of athletic competition more efficiently.
For the non-competitive type, shiatsu massage benefits include: support of the immune system; stimulates the nervous system; promotes blood circulation throughout the body; releases hormones and calms the mind. Like the equine athlete, shiatsu massage assists in maximizing physical potential by maintaining suppleness thus reducing the opportunity for injury. During a shiatsu massage endorphins are released which has the effect of a natural analgesic. One of the main focuses of shiatsu massage is to balance the Ki which is the subtle energy that is present in all life forms. As with traditional acupuncture, shiatsu massage is practiced by stimulating acupuncture points from various meridians of the body. When specific acupuncture points for certain ailments are stimulated, a healing effect takes place in the body.
Disclaimer - Equine massage is designed to reduce muscle fatigue and tension and is not a substitute for veterinary care.