Team approach to equine careBY BIANCA VAN DER KORT

On Sunday the 10th of February I travelled to  Equitopia HQ to join a great team of professionals for the Equitopia horse owners’ clinic. I didn’t really know what to expect apart from the fact that we were scheduled to do some clinics. I was welcomed warmly by a great team – Dr. Sebastian Laguna – the veterinarian; Georgie Welge – the saddle fitter;  Katja Porenta – the bodyworker;  and Ann Ramsey – the hoof specialist.

As soon as the jetlag subsided a little bit we head out to a nearby boarding facility to see three horses. All of them had been having problems for a few years and the owners, in spite of being really diligent, were stuck, so they turned to Equitopia for help.

GETTING DIFFERENT PERSPECTIVES

We assessed the horses as a team, every professional giving his input and offering his unique perspective. That way we arrived at an incredibly thorough assessment, which is a great starting point for problem solving. Working together like this is incredible, as every one of us has his own set of skills and knowledge which enables us to complement each other.

After the initial assessment, we made a detailed plan for each horse – everything from feet balance, bodywork, further veterinary diagnostics, saddle fit and of course training. The plan will be different for every horse, as every horse is unique and has a unique set of issues. For most horses, we begin with sorting out the feet and getting rid of muscular and fascial restrictions with bodywork. After a proper veterinary exam and making sure the horse is capable of carrying himself correctly, we can start with training and saddle fitting.

Team approach for better horse care

THE WHOLE STORY

Working in a team environment and complementing each other is so much better than each professional standing alone with his big ego, doing his own thing. We showed the horse owners what Equitopia stands for and what we can do as a team for a horse with problems. Having all the experts out on the same day instead of getting each one out separately works so much better. This way you can get the whole story and a clear path of what to do next. Having five pairs of eyes on the horse is much better than just one. We all look at the horse differently, we all see different issues and all of those issues need to be addressed if we want to enable the horse to be a happy and healthy athlete.

Every day that I was working with this wonderful team, I learned so much. I wish I could work in this setup every day and get to use the combined expertise of all the experts on every new horse-rider combination I work with. It was such a privilege to work in such a talented team. I hope this kind of work becomes more prevalent in the future. It is all about teamwork, everyone working together for one common goal – to help the horse.

If you found this post interesting, you might like  this course presented by Dr. Karin Leibbrandt of 4dimension dressage at Equicare Plus in Holland – available at this link.

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