As the weather is shifting in coolness here in Canada, for many of my athletic horse friends, this means the competitive season is slowing down. They requested these acupressure points as they are experiencing frustration, irritability and are dealing with the change in their training routines. These are also super helpful for horses settling into a new environment, working with a new rider, dealing with grief or change of any kind. They are also beneficial for those horses that just have a personality that is Diva-ish! I am sure you’ll know if your horse is one of these types!
Acupressure is an ancient healing art developed in Asia over 3,000 years ago, using the fingers to press key points on the surface of the skin to stimulate the body’s natural self-curative abilities. When these points are pressed, they release muscular tension, and promote the circulation of blood and the body’s life force energy (Qi or chi) to promote health and healing. Using the same points as Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine, Acupressure applies a comfortable range of pressure from gentle to firm. Acupressure is safe, non-toxic and definitely habit forming… And the horses absolutely love it!
To perform acupressure, place the ball of your thumb or middle finger on the acupressure point. Gently apply direct pressure (approximately 2-4 pounds of pressure) to the point while exhaling. Use prolonged pressure directly on the point; gradual, steady, penetrating pressure for approximately three minutes is ideal. Slowly release the point while inhaling and move on to the next point. Use and trust your intuition as the horse will often guide you and direct you on the length of time and amount of pressure they desire.
Here are the acupressure points, their traditional names and benefits.
GV 24.5- Third Eye Point Benefits: Good for spiritual and emotional imbalance, use for calming your horse.
GB 20-Wind Pond Benefits: Relieves irritability, injuries, trauma and shock. Alleviates head and neck tension and pain. Helps with eye problems. Use for arthritis.
GB 21-Shoulder Well Benefits: Relieves irritability, frustration, fatigue and nervousness. Alleviates shoulder pain and arthritis. Use for hock pain, softens tense muscles.
LU 1- Central Palace Benefits: Relieves breathing difficulties, chest tension and congestion, emotional tensions, coughing and skin disorders.
CV 17- Middle of Chest Benefits: Relieves nervousness, anxiety, frustration and irritability. Influential point for energy. Use to improve overall energy of your horse. Use for all lung conditions, especially chronic problems. Stimulation of this point will increase or disperse energy, depending on your horse’s needs.
CV 12- Center of Power Benefits: Harmonizes the stomach, relieves gastrointestinal problems and relieves emotional stress. Colic point.
GB 30-Jumping Circle Benefits: Relieves frustration, irritation, hip pain, sciatica, lower back pain and rheumatism. Relaxes the tendons and restores joint mobility.