No, not the typical kind of spa day (although that would be nice too)… I’m talking about the kind of therapeutic spas that they have for horses! A recent feature on the benefits of equine spas mentioned the fact that both humans and horses can benefit from hydrotherapy treatments – in fact, Mo Farah uses a ‘Nitro Bath’ after his races, which has a soothing effect on his aching legs via a rather cool set temperature of -170 degrees! Whilst the idea of -170 degrees doesn’t appeal to me, after over-doing it at the gym and finding I can hardly walk up the stairs, right now the thought of being pain free does!
For horses in particular though, hydrotherapy treatments can have enormous benefits. Indeed, I know many top professional riders who use them as part of their holistic approach to ensure their equine athlete’s well-being and soundness.
Many vets also recommend the use of equine spas as a rehabilitation treatment for injured horses, and some insurance policies also recognise the benefit that spa treatments can have on a horse’s journey back to full recovery.
When interviewing top eventer Laura Collette a few years back, she told me the following:
“We are very lucky to have a super equine spa, which a friend of mine Philip Walker owns, so we take them along after taking the horses up the gallops. The spa is like standing them in the sea… it has Epsom salts and water that is kept at 3 degrees. You can also add airflow to move the water around, which again has been shown to be beneficial to the horses’ legs. Obviously not everyone has a spa on their doorstep, and if we didn’t have access to the spa, we would combine cold therapy with hosing as part of the horses’ holistic routine”
Hmmm… maybe I need to hobble outside and grab the cold water hose pipe, as it seems cold therapy is what its all about!