The demonstration horse was a lovely black Morgan mare. She was sensitive and a bit nervous. Mary began her work on the nose, using an essential oil for calming the mare.
Presented by Mary Midkiff, Women and HorsesTM
Reviewed by Karen Tappenden
Location: Equine Affaire, Springfield, Massachusetts
The horse was allowed to sniff the essence " the first step to relaxation. The nose is a very sensitive area for the horse; it is 'where they hold tension and other emotions."
Mary demonstrated to the audience how to massage the mouth, a technique that is helpful for cribbers, biters and mouthy horses. Using the heel of her palm, she massaged the gums, then moved out to the TMJ and up the teeth line of the jaw, then around the eye sockets "I wanted to yawn myself."
She knocked on the mare's forehead and said a "stubborn horse will listen." She knocked directly in the middle of the forehead. This mare needed a couple of knocks!
Mary then stroked behind the cheek bones to release the lymph glands.
Then she showed us Triple Heater 16, an acupuncture point that settles restless mares. For some reason the garage door had dropped behind the little arena where they were working and this mare was not happy. TH 16 did help!
Connection, for many riders, has a great deal to do with the mouth. The techniques Mary demonstrated will help relieve some old tensions for horses due to strong, heavy hands. Also horses who have had bad experiences with the dentist would benefit from this demo. I am glad I saw it!
Look for Mary Midkiff at future Equine Affaire events & to hear more from Mary Midkiff, visit our podcast station and download her podcast. It's easy and it's free!
Mary's website, Women and Horses ( www.womenandhorses.com ) has a variety of articles on helpful horse information, a line of flower essences and an exercise program designed for the female rider.