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Recovery and rehabilitation processes in the equine sector have been evolving through models such as hydrotherapy. According to experts, it is clinically proven that this is the best treatment, without drugs, for the healing and consolidation of muscles, ligaments, tendons and bones in horses.
One of the many benefits of hydrotherapy is that it serves as an alternative method of physiotherapy and rehabilitation for animals that have to withdraw from their physical training due to musculoskeletal injuries.
According to the veterinary specialist in horse orthopedics, Lucas Giraldo Botero, this treatment is useful for improving physical performance in horses.
Giraldo explains that by applying this process, recovery from an injury can take between 3 and 6 months, depending on the severity. “When they are joint problems, recovery is faster,” he said.
How can hydrotherapy be practiced? Normally it is an exercise that is done in a circular pool, where the trainer or veterinarian spins the horse with a rope. The pool must have a cement floor so that the equine does not slip and a depth of about three meters.
The horse begins to swim around, increasing the number of pools progressively, and with it its ability to swim. This is how the horse can continue training without feeling more pain.
What happens with this therapy is that the cold causes three basic reactions: the first is at the cellular level, the second has to do with the permeability of the vessel walls, which decreases, and therefore the amount of liquid that accumulates in the affected area.
And finally, the cold numbs, to a certain extent, the affected area, acting as a local analgesic. One of the main advantages of cold is that it does not nullify the beneficial effects on the healing process.
This therapy should be done two to three times a week to see positive changes in the horse without leaving it too tired to train. Nicolás Hoyos, executive director of Asocaba, assured that “20 minutes in the pool are equivalent to almost two hours of exercise.”
In addition to its rehabilitation advantages, moving through the resistance exerted by the water, without impact movements, also helps to develop good lung capacity, which is why it is known that hydrotherapy provides a great cardiorespiratory capacity for farm animals. competence.
Swimming exercise can be an alternative in the daily work of the athlete horse, including it as part of its training program