Cold water hydrotherapy is used to treat and prevent a multitude of injuries. The saltwater spa has addressed virtually all lower leg injuries and is popular post-competition for maintenance and treating some of the following problems:
- Tendon and Ligament Injuries
- Soft-Tissue Damage
- Splints and Bone Bruising
- Swollen joints – Wind Galls
- Flesh Wounds
- Abscesses and Hoof-Related Problems
- Mud Fever and Skin Infections
- Navicular Syndrome
- Suspensory Desmitis
- Bursitis and Synovitis
Our spa has a static floor. Horses walk into a dry structure, like they would loading into a lorry or trailer. The spa is then gradually filled with water and jets may be used, as you would find in a jacuzzi.
Before using the spa, a small amount of preparation is required. First, the feet are picked out and legs are hosed down to remove any mud or grease from the lower limb. Measurements are then taken of the fetlock area of each limb and documented down. This is a great way to monitor any inflammatory changes in the limbs pre and post spa. Other measurements can also be taken and monitored in the same way, should we be treating a specific area, e.g: the hock.
We then fit the nappy to the horse to prevent any contamination of the salt water. Once the horse is fully prepared, we then load into the spa through the rear door. The handler then exits through the front door and closes it, whilst the assistant will securely fasten the rear door.
Once both handlers are in place, the pump is then turned on and the valve released, allowing water to fill from the lets in the floor. As the water reaches the fetlock area, the blower is then turned on to create a massaging effect and increase oxygen content in the water, which increases speed of wound healing. The poultice effect provides pain relieve and removes fluid/waste products, which can hinder the bodies natural healing.
The concentration of the salt water is higher than that of sea water, creating the poultice effect, which draws out any fluid or infection. After around 20 minutes, the valve is then re-opened to begin draining the water through the filtering system, back into the tank. The horse is then unloaded from the spa, once all water has been drained and any salt residue is hosed off and the nappy removed.
The therapeutic effects are long-lasting and healing time is significantly reduced. Leg measurements are then taken and noted down as a comparison.