Balanced Equine

Balanced Equine Natural approach to better healing

Tamarack Hill Farm

Fitness takes time people!

We talk about the desirability to build an "adjustable canter" into a horse, both for dressage and for jumping.

This is a "spring-loaded" type of canter, with hocks under, creating lift rather than, or at least in addition to, push. Most horses tend to find this "something of a struggle."

When I was on the Dartmouth College wrestling team, about 55 years ago, a fun thing our coach had us do was to run up and down the steps of the Dartmouth football stadium for strength and fitness.

I found this "something of a struggle," as in appallingly hard, especially about the third time up those damn steps.

So don't be surprised if you have a horse that would rather coast along on his forehand, rather than carry himself. Engagement , the act of stepping under and lifting, is hard, hard, hard.

Don't think so? Go to your local football stadium, and have a go, for some added insight into what the horse is feeling.

Rider Fitness

Rider Fitness

A little Tuesday Trivia:
Some horses can take over 3 strides per second when racing.
Some racing Quarter Horses, especially those running at short distances, have been shown to take over three strides per second. There are many aspects that make doing so somewhat mind-boggling. Racing Quarter Horses often reach over 50 miles per hour during a race. Combined with the fact that during the stance phase, the foot momentarily comes to a stop, it is likely that the hoof must reach speeds approaching (or over) 100 miles per hour during the swing phase in order to “keep up with the horse” (given that during part of the stride the foot is not moving). And to think that it can reach that speed, come to a stop, reach that speed again, and come to a stop three times per second is absolutely amazing!!!
Nielsen, B., Robison, C., Fabus, T., Kenny, J., & LeCompte, R. (2014). Stride rates of quarter horses and thoroughbreds during races of short and classic race distances. Equine Veterinary Journal, 46(S46), 44-45.
Nielsen, B. D., Turner, K. K., Ventura, B. A., Woodward, A. D., & O’Connor, C. I. (2006). Racing speeds of quarter horses, thoroughbreds and Arabians. Equine Veterinary Journal, 38(S36), 128-132.
Pratt, G. W. (1991) Clocking the fastest horses on earth. Quarter racing J. 4, 36–40.


Massage is so important

The Five Secret Benefits of Equine Massage
How to Choose the Right Equine Massage School for YouWhat is Equine Massage Certification?The Five Secret Benefits of Equine Massage

Equine massage is quickly becoming a vital addition to many savvy horse owners’ team of health care experts. These people have learned the secret benefits of equine massage. But what is so secret? Anyone familiar with massage and/or holistic health care techniques has read about the same old list of benefits of massage for horses. However, no one has translated that list into the hidden benefits for you, the horse owner. And unless you have accidentally stumbled upon and experienced the REAL results for you and your horse, you probably have no idea why massage is not just a once a year luxury.

The typical list of benefits of equine massage reads as such:

Dilates blood vessels
Returns blood back toward heart
Helps drain sluggish lymph material
Improves muscle tone
Prevents adhesions
Stretches connective tissue
Lessens stiffness and swelling
Has a stimulating or sedative effect on nervous system
Brings awareness to the area being massaged
How many horse owners really understand how this list can impact them? Quite frankly, very few of them do. Unless you excelled in biology and physiology in high school or college, chances are this age old list is Greek to you!

Let’s finally update and translate this list into how equine massage benefits you, the horse owner. We will start by condensing the list into three main topics: circulation, muscle performance and mental acuity.

CIRCULATION: Massage increases circulation to all body parts. All cells of the body absolutely must have oxygen and nutrients brought to them, via the circulation of blood, to generate new cells, produce energy, export toxins and maintain all cellular functions. Poor circulation leads to a decrease in each of these areas. In essence, you now are working with a half-baked horse that will most likely have varied health issues.
MUSCLE PERFORMANCE: Massage physically breaks down the knots and contracted muscle fibers that cannot do their job efficiently. This leads to better muscle quality and more comprehensive and balanced muscle action. Your horse is made up of 700 skeletal muscles and that is 60% of the body mass of the horse! Working a horse with tight, continually contracted muscles is equivalent to operating in a state of resistance. The horse is using much more energy to perform and achieving less than its optimum potential and headed for injury.
MENTAL ACUITY: Massage speaks to the nervous system in such a way that a horse will experience a significant state of relaxation, mental clarity and self healing. A horse functioning in a state of constant mental stress and limited focus will never perform to its full potential.
When massage is performed on a consistent basis the positive effects build upon themselves over time. Once a year massages are basically the equivalent of putting a band-aid on underlying issues and the horse never reaps the benefits of continual healing. However, regular massage not only benefits the horse, it also benefits YOU, the horse owner, and here is how:

You could experience a decrease in vet visits which ultimately may keep your horse out of the lay-up stall saving you time and money.

You may have a horse that can move more efficiently, with less pain and achieve more physically, which will equal a better performance for you.

You may have a horse that experiences less tendon and ligament injuries equaling more performance time and less lay- up time; keeping you in the saddle.

You may have a horse that recovers quicker from workouts and is feeling ready to work on a consistent basis giving you a willing horse to ride.

You may have a much happier horse with a better work attitude making your daily ride a pleasure rather than a fight.

Whether you ride for pleasure or performance, equine massage is a simple addition to your horse’s health care program which can keep you in the saddle at the top of your performance level.

Evention Tv Season 4: Episode 3 "What should I feed my Eventer?"

Good info here...I especially like that he says most lower work horses don't need supplementation in forms of a concentrated feeds. Yes!!

An episode you don't want to miss. We drove a long way to Kentucky to to discuss the all important topic of "What should I feed my eventer?" f...

Asymmetrical Athletes: Horse and Rider - BioRider Fitness
Asymmetrical Athletes: Horse and Rider - BioRider Fitness

Asymmetrical Athletes: Horse and Rider - BioRider Fitness

The job of a rider is to make sure a horse develops evenly as horses are naturally asymmetrical. Riders themselves are also naturally asymmetrical as every human being is naturally uneven. Studies have proved these imbalances within horses and riders but…


1136 Luke Bridge Rd
Trenton, SC

Opening Hours

Monday 10:00 - 15:00
Tuesday 10:00 - 15:00
Wednesday 10:00 - 15:00
Thursday 10:00 - 15:00
Friday 10:00 - 15:00
Saturday 10:00 - 15:00
Sunday 10:00 - 15:00


(817) 995-7752


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