Does everyone use a horse physio on a regular basis?

Mary Poppins

Well-Known Member
Oct 10, 2004
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When I first got Ben I had a local physio come and look at Ben to just check him over and make sure that he didn't have any issues. He was a little bit 'tight' in places, but nothing too bad and she suggested that she see him again in 6 months time.

It's now been a year since she has seen him and I asked my RI if she thought that I should book Ben in for another treatment. She asked if I had any concerns about him and I told her that he feels the best he has ever felt and had no problems at all. She said that it was obviously up to me, but if I didn't feel that there were any problems and he was feeling good, there probably wasn't any need to book him in for a treatment. She said that it was rare for any horse to be 100% perfect (like humans) and that in her experience, physios can often 'open a can of worms' and end up finding problems which are not really problems and then getting involved in a long treatment program which isn't really necessary. Ben is in light to medium work -we do a bit of everything but not to a very high standard!

What are your thoughts? Do your horses regular see physios? Are they a necessary part of horse care, or just useful for when there are problems?


Well-Known Member
Jul 27, 2009
I don't know if it's necessary, but I have an equine masseuse treat Rusty every 2 weeks (approx.). He loves it and I like pampering him. While he doesn't work very hard - I only ride a few times a week, I think his cribbing causes tightness in his neck.


Well-Known Member
Feb 8, 2012
Mine recommends getting your horse checked every 4/5 months.

I will do that as it's only £25 and good for picking up any problems early, even things like he needs to be more supple on his left rein etc. Also my horse really enjoys it... but I only get his teeth done once a year rather than every 6 months which is probably really bad :frown:
I tend to only get them out if I feel there is something amiss and my physio said only need to call her out again if and when I feel I need it. I liked that from her mainly because it seemed as though she definitely wasnt money grabbing.

I had jasper seen to every year for 3 years after the first one the lady said he would need to be seen to yearly, consequently when she came out the further 2 times he actually needed very little done and I was paying £45 for that!

I am thinking he may need a treatment at the moment but going with the lady I had out earlier in the year as I felt I got a better service from her and I actually noticed a difference afte she had been to Tegan but I didnt notice a difference at all with jasper the three times he was seen to.


Well-Known Member
Apr 23, 2009
No-one else on our yard does, but I decided to get ours seen last year. Jack will now be seen every 12 months, as he doesn't do much at all, only light hacking at weekends really, and Raf every 6 months because he has a much busier schedule! Raf was seen for the second time a couple of months ago and I'm glad he was because the physio found quite a bit of tightness which she freed up.

I do agree though - humans would probably also benefit from a regular physio workup, but most of us wouldn't bother spending the time and money on ourselves!


Well-Known Member
Feb 20, 2000
Dorset, UK
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Both Hebe and I see a physio regularly - the same physio! It started because my instructor, who was new then, said Hebe and I were both very stiff on one side, and that the two could be related ... I was reluctant for myself at first, but the treatment fixed a painful knee, which I'd just put down to old age, but which in fact was the result of a slight misalignment of my pelvis. Now I think it helps to spot problems before they happen, and helps to keep us (relatively) straight and supple.


With out my boys life would be bland
Apr 16, 2009
Both boys see a sports physio every 13 weeks. Excellent at keeping them supple and picking up when I am not sitting correctly due to my AS so they need extra work over one side of their backs. It is on both boys in roughly the same spot on two different saddles so I know it's me.

They love it and I can feel the difference the next day. at £45 per horse it is not cheap but I think they are worth it


Cantering cabbage!
May 18, 2009
Belle is seen every six months regardless, she's had three physio's since I bought her and so far nothing has been picked up thankfully, she's very supple and no tightness or soreness anywhere, probably because she doesn't do a lot, but I still get her checked over just as a precaution really. I don't think it does any harm and better to have them checked regularly than wait until there is a problem I feel.
I also see an osteo every six weeks (max), if I didn't I wouldn't be able to ride, it helps keep me supple and relatively pain free.

There are only two of us on our yard who do though, having said that we're the only two who have the dentist and saddle fitter regularly too.

Dark Storm

Well I'll be a Krampus's Auntie! :D!
Jan 4, 2009
I only started using one a couple of years ago, Shadow might get seen 2-3 times a year depending on how he is, I sometimes just get them out to give him a good go over to make sure he's in tip top condition and he's not hiding anything from me.
Had one out just a few weeks ago as I suspected issues with his hinds, which turned out to be a minor issue with his ham strings being a bit tight (due to when he was ill and box rested for 12 days).

Dizzy Woo

Well-Known Member
Apr 20, 2008
Both Hebe and I see a physio regularly - the same physio! It started because my instructor, who was new then, said Hebe and I were both very stiff on one side, and that the two could be related ... I was reluctant for myself at first, but the treatment fixed a painful knee, which I'd just put down to old age, but which in fact was the result of a slight misalignment of my pelvis. Now I think it helps to spot problems before they happen, and helps to keep us (relatively) straight and supple.

How interesting, Daisy and I are also stiff on one rein and I also get extremely painful hip/knee/ankle/foot after a good long hack that I would like to push further as we explore further afield but have to get off and walk after a couple of hours.
Could you recommend someone local Linda (pm)


New Member
Mar 22, 2013
Yes. Mine are checked twice a year and have extra sessions if there is an issue.

They bth have issues that need maintained.


Well-Known Member
Feb 20, 2000
Dorset, UK
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I've sent you a pm, DW - let me know if you need any more info.

By the way, my knee was nothing to do with riding - but it was very interesting to find out how the different bits are connected ...


Active Member
Dec 30, 2006
I don't but my saddle fitter takes a wholistic approach and checks over Joy's back and muscle (under the flubber) and I've been very quick before to pick up on issues myself so this is one area I'm happy to act on if I feel something is starting to go wrong. At that point I have a fully qualified physio in, rather than just a massage.


Jane&Sid these days!
Apr 30, 2010
Surrey Hills
We have a chiro out to both boys about every 3 months. Generally it is just tuning up, but Mattie has incipient arthritis and it really helps to keep him mobile, and Ziggy tends to get very tight shoulders and moves much more freely after a treatment.

I could probably do it less often, but I remember being so horrified when I got Ziggy by the number and seriousness of issues which the physio found that I am overgenerous now!


Equine Karaoke Queen
Apr 15, 2012
Rubic had 3 treatments in May. That was the first she'd been seen by a physio. She basically said to get in touch with her if I felt something else was up but that she would recommend that Rubic be seen once a year (maybe just when I'm starting to bring her back into work properly again) because of her tendency to tense up through her neck when she gets stressed.


Well-Known Member
Jun 21, 2000
I tend to only get one when I suspect a problem and my saddler does a check similar to JC's he'll check my horse for stiffness and check his back. Then ask to see the horse move without the saddle inhand on both up and down at a walk and trot. He has been quick to find problems where I have had an idea something might be amiss (but not said anything) and he will mention it.

Whenever I have been suspect about anything I've always had a chartered APCAT physio out, not a massage person either. The physio will treat the horse and has on occasion treated me ! For some routine treatments I've use a local McTimoney person who again has treated me/horse and even the dog when I saw him moving not quite right.

It does come down to cost and my local person is cheaper (just) but my instinct hasn't let me down over the last few years and I've learnt to trust it more and more so I use the more expensive physio (£100 a time !) when I suspect it needs more than the other treatment.


Well-Known Member
Feb 16, 2013
I'd probably only use one if I suspected a problem too. I am a wee bit sceptical about horse massage!
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