The relationship between horse and rider is a complex one. Compensations, imbalances or weaknesses in the rider can cause musculo-skeletal changes in the equine that can affect their performance. Vice versa, musculo-skeletal changes and imbalances in the equine may over time affect the riders muscle balance as they have to compensate for reduced function or reluctance to work in a particular way. This could lead to a continued cycle of dysfunction, imbalance, pain and poor performance.
Signs you may need Rider physiotherapy
- Fixing through one reign
- Increased pressure on one side of saddle under seat bones
- Saddle slip
- Increased wear on one side of saddle/riding boots, jodhpurs or gloves.
- Finding canter transitions more difficult on one reign
- Plateau in performance when training/schooling a horse
Assessments will be carried out on and off the horse. This will establish if there are any musculo-skeletal issues off the horse and then combined with a ridden assessment.
- Massage techniques
- Mobilisations (treatments) to joints including hips and back
- Activation exercises to switch on muscles that are not functioning properly
- Tailored exercise programmes
Equine specific assessment can also be carried out in conjunction with rider assessments to fully understand the route of any poor performance (see Equine Physiotherapy section).