To use EQUISTIX, simply hold each handle of the EQUISTIX and roll the therapeutic combs across your horse’s muscles in a gentle, back and forth motion. Let the EQUISTIX flex and contour around and over your horse’s muscles.
Safety for you and your horse is always the first priority. Remember that stiff, sore and knotted muscles hurt. Pay attention to your horse’s reaction. If you massage a particularly sore area, your horse may react defensively. Watch your horse’s reaction and adjust accordingly.
Massaging over bone is uncomfortable and may cause bruising. If an area is hard and doesn’t yield to your touch, consider it bone and leave it alone.
Massage each area for about 20 seconds then move on to the next. If you do find a muscle that’s knotted or particularly sore, it may be best to gently massage the area, move on and then come back to it.
Never massage over an injured area, on a horse with an illness or infection, if your horse is lame or if you’re unsure for any reason. A particularly sensitive area may be an indication of an underlying medical issue. Consult your veterinarian with any questions that you have and before you begin any new treatment.
Be kind and gentle with EQUISTIX. Each horse will react differently and some are more sensitive than others. Patience and continued use over time will gradually decrease sensitivity and increase flexibility, comfort and willingness.
When massaging your horse, think of their body as being divided into three zones:
Fore Quarters: The fore quarters of your horse consists of the front legs, neck, shoulders and adjoining muscles. The superficial muscles of the fore quarters are used for flexing joints, moving the limbs, and lifting the neck. The health of these muscles is vital to collection, movement and flexibility.
Be mindful of pressure as you move over bones and other potentially sensitive areas, especially in the neck.
Barrel: The barrel encloses the rib cage and internal organs of your horse. It includes the back and extends from behind the shoulders to the front of the hip. The backs of our Equine Athletes carry a strenuous load with continuous impact. Massaging the muscles of the Barrel will encourage suppleness, prevent tension, and stimulate blood flow. Even the fascia (the tissue surrounding muscle) will benefit, as it too can become constricted.
Use gentle pressure when introducing, and adjust pressure based on your horse’s body language.
Hind Quarters: The hind quarters include the large, muscular area of the hind legs, behind the barrel. The large muscles of the Hind Quarters run down the back of the legs. The major superficial muscles are responsible for extending, flexing, and rotating the legs and hips. These heavily utilized muscles are used to drive your horse forward. Massage these muscles to ensure proper collection and carriage.
Apply consistent pressure to release tension in these powerful muscles. Be careful massaging down that back of the hind legs. Those muscles can be quite stiff and sore after a workout.
How to Clean your EQUISTIX
Cleaning your EquiStix is easy. Simply rinse with water. If it gets particularly dirty, use a mild soap and water, then rinse. Hang to dry.