Magnetic therapy for your horse!
Those of you who follow my online comic or have the questionable pleasure of knowing me in real life know how much I abhor the cold. There really aren’t words that can be used in polite company that truly capture my loathing of all things winter related. Of the many reasons for this is that winter just makes everything take longer with ten times as much effort.
Need to go somewhere? Oh, we got 18″ of snow last night, better start 45 minutes early so you can shovel out the car and defrost a hole in the ice to see. Also, mind the ice on the driveway so you don’t slip and die.
Having horses in the winter isn’t only more labor intensive, you also get to hope your horses doesn’t inadvertently kill you or himself in his newfound exuberance and the sheet ice in his paddock.
But I digress, this post isn’t about how much I hate winter. I only mention that because last fall, with the doom of winter impending, I started looking for an alternative to the ice boots I was using for Will post-ride. Ice boots are super in the summer, but I wasn’t too keen about using them when it’s effectively freezing outside.
I started down the internet rabbit hole and found the Veredus Magnetik 4 Hour Stable Boot. Although I had not previously used any sort of magnetic therapy, they sounded interesting and Veredus makes high quality products, so I thought I would give them a try.
How Magnetic Therapy Works:
Magnetic therapy is one of those things that people either believe in or not. When I was researching magnetic therapy, it was indeed hard to find any peer-reviewed studies that proved their efficacy. Even so, there is an abundance of anecdotal information that seems to imply there’s something to it. And there was nothing that indicated it could do any sort of harm.
Magnetic therapy is a non-invasive, drug free treatment that works by stimulating blood flow while simultaneously helping with cellular growth and ligament repair; the magnets’ polarity is said to draw blood to the area that they are placed in.
The boots are extremely well constructed and fit nicely; after consistent use for the last 5 months — which has included a few times where I forgot to remove them and Will was left to his own devices with them in the paddock — they still look brand new. The main material is super soft and is quite breathable; Will’s legs never felt warm to the touch after wearing them.
As I have mentioned before, Will has more fluid build up in his legs than most horses. He’s been looked over thoroughly since the age of two and we always come back to that it’s just him. I was curious to see if the boots did anything for that.
What I Found:
When I first started using the boots, I only left them on for 45 minutes or so due to my own time constraints. I can’t say that I saw anything negative but I also did not see anything notable with regards to his fluid retention (he was going well though). I did notice that when I would remove the boots there were little circles of raised hair that corresponded to where the magnets were. These went away almost immediately after the boots were removed and were not due to the boots being tight (see the image below).
My initial thought on these was that the boots were indeed doing something, but I wasn’t sure what. Since Will was performing really well and felt great I didn’t question it too much. At the start of this year, due to scheduling changes, I was able to start leaving the boots on for two to four hours; that’s when I noticed a significant difference in both his performance and his tendency to have fluid in his lower legs.
With consistent use, perhaps four days a week, Will’s legs are noticeably tighter overall. He is also feeling super soft in his back and significantly stronger from behind. I would almost say he feels a bit fresh, but not in a bad way. He just seems to feel good in his body.
Ultimately, I’m pretty impressed with these. Will does seem to benefit from them and I am excited to have something to help him at the shows this season when he’s stalled and unable to move as much (as he always gets super puffy legs from that). I would wholeheartedly recommend them to anyone with a horse that tends to have puffy legs or someone wanting a nice way to help their horse feel a bit better after a workout. As with many things, I am sure every horse responds differently, but these are well worth giving a go. In fact, at some point I think I’ll need to try their Magnetik blanket too!
Morgane Schmidt Gabriel is a 34-year-old teacher/artist/dressage trainer/show announcer/ who still hasn’t quite decided what she wants to be when she grows up. A native Floridian, she now lives in Reno, NV, where she’s been able to confirm her suspicion that snow is utterly worthless. Though she has run the gamut of equestrian disciplines, her favorite is dressage. She was recently able to complete her USDF bronze and silver medals and is currently working on her gold. Generally speaking her life is largely ruled by Woody, a 14.2 hand beastly quarter horse, Willie, a now beastly 8-year-old Dutch gelding, and Stormy, her friend’s nearly all white paint gelding with a penchant for finding every mud hole and pee spot in existence. Visit her website at www.theideaoforder.com.