ABOUT THE WATER TREADMILL
WHAT IS THE WATER TREADMILL?
The Equine water treadmill is a controlled environment for horses to exercise with the resistance of water, Whilst also offering the benefits of hydrotherapy. Our treadmill has a transparent side allowing the horse to feel more relaxed and less confined. Horses work in a natural outline without a rider at controlled speeds in walk and when appropriate in trot. Water is introduced gradually over a series of sessions to a maximum of knee height. The water level and speed of the treadmill can be altered meaning each horse has its own individual programme.
HOW DOES THE WATER TREADMILL WORK?
The horses walk on a moving conveyor belt and as the water is added they lift their legs up out of the water in a more vertical plane. This has the benefit of increasing joint flexion and exaggerates the use of the back muscles. With no rider to influence the horse’s way of going the muscles develop symmetrically as the horse works in balance and without interference in a straight line.
The water reduces concussive forces allowing the safe strengthening of muscles and tendons. Whilst the water does provide a degree of buoyancy and support around the limbs, the horse has to work hard against the increased resistance of the water and this will develop stride length, tighten core stomach muscles along with tendons and ligaments. The cold water on the lower limbs provides a massaging and cooling effect excellent for horses recovering from leg problems.
WHO USES THE TREADMILL?
The treadmill is used by professionals and amateurs alike. Whether its used for rehabilitation or as part of a horses training programme. It has proven advantages for all disciplines. There is no maximum age limit for horses to use the treadmill all we ask is that horses are well handled.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF USING THE TREADMILL?
Increased cardiovascular activity
Increased stamina and strength
Increased stride length
Low impact exercise with increased resistance
Increased joint flexion
Increased core muscle engagement
Increased muscle tone
Helps in recovery from injury when riding is not possible