by Cheryl Erpelding
Equine Sports Massage is a growing field and an important component that many owners provide the horses they love to keep them feeling good. Whether your horse has a demanding show schedule, or they are your favorite leisurely trail companion, massage and bodywork can improve their overall well being immensely.
I reached out to Jeanne Huliska ESMT who is both a certified equine sports massage therapist and a certified PEMF practitioner to help us better understand the work she does for horses to feel their best. I wanted to explore the important bodywork Jeanne does, and asked her these questions to share with our readers.
How long have you been an ESMT?
“I have been a certified equine sports massage therapist for over two years, as well as a personal trainer and human masseuse for deep tissue injuries and issues for over 30 years. I’ve always had a love for horses and my daughter and I own and ride, so I decided what better way to keep our horse healthy than becoming an equine massage therapist and it has grown tremendously since that time.”
Where did you do your training?
“I received my first certification through Equissage, Inc., and I received my certification in advanced equine sports massage. This included basic massage, saddle fitting, and stretches for different issues. I also became certified in 8 other courses since that time. I am constantly learning and adding new therapies for our clients. We offer fascia work, classes for owners, KT taping, PEMF, cupping and deep tissue work as well as massage for colic, PEMF paddle for hoof issues, and lower leg problems. The list is ever growing and never ending.”
How long are your bodywork sessions typically?
“My sessions last about an hour and most of my clients choose the weekly massage option so that their sessions can be a bit shorter so there are fewer issues to fix each week. In most cases, it will take about two sessions before owners see the remarkable improvements in their horse, so I like to check in frequently.”
“Horses do so much for us, that they deserve their “one day a week to recharge their batteries” so to speak, and get back a little of what they do for us every day!”
Tell us about your pricing.
“My prices are always affordable and very competitive based on the client’s location. Massage therapy is very beneficial for the overall wellness of horses…so I’m happy to work with my clients on a program that works best for them and their budget. Prices can vary between $200 a month for weekly (with me only). I also offer a lower price with my trained equine therapists and I offer discounts for groups. Each individual session is $65 to $125 depending on your massage therapist and what you would like covered – massage or only PEMF etc.
“I offer group training classes for owners, for shows, and etc. Pre and post tack massages can make a huge difference in a horse’s performance while keeping the horse forward and moving better during the training. Prices for shows can vary, but we also can get your horse ready for the show with pre-show massage sessions which helps the horses to perform extremely well.”
How does KT taping help horses?
“KT tape supports the joints and increases blood flow by lifting the skin slightly. You can feel the difference immediately after it is applied. Taping can be used for so many things – from trailering, to pregnancy support, to tendon support, to back issues, and the list goes on and on.
How does PEMF therapy work? What is the technology behind it?
Pulsed Electro magnetic field is an amazing technology that recharges the cells and helps tremendously with pain, swelling, and muscle recovery. It’s an anti inflammatory in a natural form that does no harm and can help with so many issues. It can help with a wide range of issues. Plus, it helps identify where pain or tightness may be due to the actual muscle pop that you can see when you place it in the area of work. I consider it two therapies in one and I’ve found equine sports massage and PEMF therapy go hand in hand to improve a horse overall. It’s an amazing modality that can help horses and their riders as well! We can all benefit from PEMF therapy. It’s important that your certified PEMF practitioner knows the proper techniques and is very hands on during treatment. A knowledgeable PEMF professional is extremely important. Not all bodywork is equal – that is a fact.”
Please explain Fascia work for our readers.
“Fascia is extremely important. I have taken many courses on fascia and I’m always learning more about this. Horses need fascia work because their fascia can become tight from work and use. If we don’t treat it, it becomes tight like a net around the muscles and the horses truly cannot stretch and move like needed for all the things we ask them to do. I always treat fascia during the massage, and end the treatment with PEMF for a happy horse that sleeps better feels their best and performs like never before. I guarantee my work. I enjoy hearing back from my clients when they excitedly tell me my horse feels amazing! Every session could be different depending on what the horse needs. Some sessions may involve everything while some may only involve one treatment. I have treated all kinds of issues and love seeing what improvements can be made. I am recommended by vets, chiropractors and trainers. I have over 75 active clients and I have not had one unhappy customer to date. My goal is to make equine massage a regular go to to keep horses loose happy and healthy along with all the other needs they have regular massage is similar to a supplement they can’t go without.
Jeanne sent us this testimonial from Eventing Trainer Megan McIver Sabo:
“I have been an eventing trainer and competitor for many years and have never come across someone with so much talent and quality as Jeanne. Jeanne goes above and beyond in everything she does, she points things out to look for with my horses that I would never catch without her and has multiple times dropped everything to support my horses either before or after a big competition.
“I know I would not be where I am today without Jeanne on my team working at making my horses perform their absolute best all the time.”
To schedule a massage or to book a class to learn equine massage and bodywork please contact Jeanne Huliska, 714-861-0914, firstname.lastname@example.org and visit https://equizenequinemassage.com. She can also be followed on Instagram @Equizen_bodywork and @Horse_zenmassage_Jeanne.