How To Perform an Acupressure Treatment
Start by finding a comfortable location for you and your horse where it is calm and you both can relax. Slowly, take three even breaths in and out.
Think about how you want to help your horse and strengthen his digestion. Taking a moment to formulate the intent of your treatment is very important.
Review the Bladder Meridian Chart; you will be tracing this meridian on both sides of your horse three times. Begin by resting one hand near your horse's shoulder. Using the heel of your other hand, place it at the poll and gently stroke down his neck, just off the midline. Continue stroking down to the hindquarters staying to the side of the midline. To finish, stroke down along the outside of his leg to the coronary band. Your opposite hand can trail along the same path touching the horse lightly. Repeat this stroking procedure three times on each side of your horse.
Now you are ready for Point Work. Follow the Digestive System Strengthening Treatment acupressure points given in the chart for the Point Work section of the treatment. Begin by resting one hand on your horse wherever it is comfortable. You are going to perform the actual Point Work with the other hand. Use either the thumb or two-finger technique depending on what is most comfortable for you.
* Thumb technique: Place the tip of your thumb directly on the acupressure point, also called "acupoint," and hold the point gently, but with intent, for about three to eight seconds.
* Two-finger technique: Put your middle finger on top of your index finger and then place your index finger gently, but with intentional firmness, directly on the acupressure point for approximately three to eight seconds.
Repeat these acupoints on both sides of your horse. Watch your horse's reaction to the point work. Healthy energy releases are: yawning, deep breathing, muscle twitches, release of air, and softening of the eye. If your horse is overly reactive to a particular point or exhibits a pain reaction, try that point again at a later session.
To complete your treatment session you need to trace the Bladder Meridian exactly the way you did at the start of the treatment session. Rest your hand comfortably on his shoulder. Place the heel of your other hand just off his poll and stoke down his neck, over his back to his hindquarters, keeping your hand to the side of his spine and down the outside of his leg to the lateral side of the coronary band. Your opposite hand can lightly trail along the same path the working hand. Repeat this procedure three times on each side of your horse.
Note that it can take 24 hours for the effects of an acupressure treatment to be fully experienced.
Nancy Zidonis and Amy Snow are the authors of Equine Acupressure: A Working Manual; The Well-Connected Horse: A Guide To Canine Acupressure; and Acu-Cat: A Guide to Feline Acupressure. They own Tallgrass Publishers, which offers Meridian Charts for horses, dogs, and cats, plus Introducing Equine Acupressure, a 50-minute training video. Tallgrass Animal Acupressure provides training courses worldwide. To contact them: phone: 888-841-7211; web: www.animalacupressure.com; email: firstname.lastname@example.org