When Bobbi came out to work on my horse Renny, he was recovering from a torn check ligament of his left foreleg. As well, Renny had suffered an injury before I owned him (more than 5 years ago) in which he had run into a doorjamb and now had a softball sized depression with a lot of scaring behind his left elbow on his ribs. He was just coming back into work and I thought that with Bobbi's help he could heal and change the way he moved so that he would not reinjure himself.
The Vet that treated him thought his injury was due to him compensating. When I rode Renny, he tended to not put weight on his left front leg and he had trouble bending through his rib cage (Renny is highly protective of the old injury site i.e. the scar as well as his shoulder, barrel and hind end).
After the 1st session, I noticed Renny started to be able to bend better to the left. In the 2nd session, Bobbi showed me how to work the scar tissue on his ribs to begin to release tension in it. By the end of the session we both noticed that the tissue was far less depressed. After this session I noticed that Renny was more relaxed and his neck felt like butter when I rode him. As the sessions progressed I noticed Renny progressively able to bend to the left better, he was foaming on the bit more, his walk-canter departs improved and he just seemed happier overall. Although Renny began to stiffen up after time, he was able to work out of it when he was ridden.
Bobbi was able to help Renny move his body better and we hope he will be less likely now to reinjure that leg again (so far he is still doing well). Also I have to say that Bobbi was really patient with Renny and that was really helpful for him to relax and let her go deep into his tissue. I give Bobbi a lot of credit, because Renny is ‘very’ difficult to work with as he has so many trust issues. Renny and I both thank Bobbi for her wonderful work.
Diana, Stockton, NJ.
* In 2012 Renny suffered a broken leg while out on pasture and was humanely euthanized..RIP Renny.
Pavoroti is a 13 year old Dutch Warmblood whom I’ve had for 2 years and am training with at Level 1 Dressage. Pavoroti previously had been training at Level 4 and Prix St. George, yet, he was stiff and unyielding and could not stretch easily through his neck and body since we had gotten him. Pavarotti’s steps were very short and choppy and I had a lot of trouble getting him to relax and reach toward the bit. Although it seemed easy for him to turn left, he had trouble bending to the right and doing figure eights. His head would come up and he seemed frustrated, almost as if it hurt him to try. In general, he just wasn’t very fluid in the way he carried himself.
When Bobbi began to work with him I noticed his stride became bigger, his shoulders and hind end really started to swing. When I got on him he started to reach with his neck all the way to the ground (even with my extra long reins). While it used to take Pavarotti almost an hour to loosen up, he began to be supple right away.
Since Pavarotti has finished the Equine Natural Movement series, he has no trouble switching his bend in either direction. Pavoroti feels so much looser in his body, his muscles move and no longer feel like hard blocks and he feels like he has much more power coming from behind. I think of it as he now has ‘umph’ when I ride him!
One of the biggest gifts this work has given both of us is that my horse is much happier. Having been tight and having had to struggle with his body all those years, as a result of realizing he can now move like a horse should, I think Pavarotti is thrilled. When he gets turned out these days he runs around like a maniac, but it is in a joyful manner!
Sammy, Lambertville, N.J.
I wanted to tell you how impressed I am with your work and “The Equine Natural Movement Series”. As you know we share common interest in the welfare of a horse named Kole. I am Kole’s hoof care practitioner and unfortunately watched as Kole’s health deteriorated months ago from Equine Protozoal Myeloencephalitis (EPM) resulting in loss of coordination and muscle atrophy. He actually was so affected by EPM that I was unable to trim his hind feet. Kole could not balance his body when I tried to lift his hind legs to trim them. Kole’s future as a riding horse looked very bleak at best and it was quite painful to even watch him try to walk or move around.
Through Veterinary care and your help using The Equine Natural Movement Series method of therapy, Kole has made an impressive come back. Kole’s owners Susan and Jim M. explained how your work on Kole was helping him along and that immediately after each session there was noticeable improvement in Kole’s condition. I must tell you that I was amazed at his progress at our last scheduled trim. Not only was Kole able to give me his feet to work on but he actually trotted in his pasture when Susan went to get him for his trim. Nice work Bobbi. Koles progress is nothing short of miraculous. I’m glad I had the opportunity to witness Kole’s comeback from EPM. With your help his future looks much brighter. It was a pleasure to see the result of your work. Thanks for helping Kole.
John Zeiselmeier, DAEP, MIIAEP, Bare Performance Hoof Care LLC
To see testimonial video about Kole from his owner, Susan M., please click here
...coming soon on this website: See and read the most current story about Kole's recovery from EPM after his illness began late last summer (2010).
Stomper, our 24 year old QH, was retired 4 years ago due to unsoundness. He had done everything from Congress to jumping, western, trail and even 2nd level dressage. He has been pretty lame these last few years. Stomper ‘hobbled’ and generally went around like a cripple. We give him legend 1x/month and he has had his hocks injected.
After Stomper’s second session of Equine Natural Movement, we began noticing him playing more when we turned him out. We even saw him bucking which we hadn’t seen him do in the longest time. During the last few sessions Bobbi suggested we have the chiropractor come out to see Stomper because she felt he needed to be adjusted. The chiropractor saw Stomper shortly after he finished his 5th session. That seemed to really be the last piece of the puzzle to help alleviate Stomper’s lameness issues.
What we have seen with Stomper as a result of him having gone through the Equine Natural Movement series is that now when he is turned out, he trots and canters soundly; He has even taken to leaping off of all fours on occasion! He moves around much more evenly which is a miracle for him (especially at the trot). After the chiropractor finished adjusting him, he told us we could begin riding him that afternoon!
Geri-Ann, Lambertville, NJ.
I bought Danny a year ago as a project horse. I fell in love with his disposition; despite his ‘greenness’ he was very willing and kind. I brought him along slowly and showed him successfully at the local jumping levels. As the training progressed, we seemed to hit a block then we took a turn for the worst.
This past winter, Danny started exhibiting more and more resistance to training and felt tense and tight when being ridden. He was becoming cold-backed and often felt as though he wanted to run away from something. He would shake his head during transitions. He walked and cantered without bending his back legs much (lacking spring), and would lean hard onto the bit. His trot was better to the left than the right. Danny’s canter was noticeably fast and unbalanced and had a ‘pegged-legged’ feeling and look to it. Although it was better to the right than the left, his horrible canter made him feel as if he was split in two.
I began noticing Danny was getting more and more reactive to grooming and saddling. Danny’s willing disposition was quickly turning into an aloof one; where before he would willingly come up to me in the field, he would now walk away. Danny would often look ‘glazed over’ on the cross ties and would often stand with his legs pointed in four different directions. He also became plagued with frequent ‘huge’ hoof abscesses.
Without any obvious medical signs or symptoms I wasn’t sure what to do. I knew something was wrong and that we needed help. I was succumbing to the thought that Danny might become nothing more than a ‘walk-trot horse’ or a ‘glorified lawn ornament’. Then I heard about Equine Natural Movement therapy, and although I was skeptical, I decided to give it a try. I contacted Bobbi Jackson, a Certified Practitioner of Equine Structural Integration, because her methods of Equine Natural Movement made sense to me. Unlike most other therapies used to ‘correct’ structural problems, hers seemed non-invasive and gentle.
Bobbi’s work on my horse began with a close evaluation and a gentle pass over his body with her hands. During this first session, I noticed Danny seemed calm and relaxed and he enjoyed Bobbi's company. After this evaluation, Danny immediately appeared to walk better than he had been walking previously. Still skeptical, I figured at the very least Danny had enjoyed his ‘professional petting session’. I was pleasantly surprised to see, as the sessions progressed, that ENM therapy was actually working! Danny started moving with a nice ‘spring’ in his step and started acting like his old self, even coming up to me again in the field.
With the knowledge Bobbi has brought me, I have come to believe Danny may have had a severe accident at some point in his life and had hurt his back. Whatever had happened to Danny in the past caused his back to be out of alignment. What I had mistaken as ‘typical crooked greenness’ was actually ‘structural crookedness’. It is now apparent that Danny had been having problems where his hips and his backbone meet. This had caused severe inflammation and pain surrounding his spine going forward from that point. As well, behind the ears, his neck had not been in alignment either.
Today my horse's body and mind have blossomed as a result of Equine Natural Movement therapy. With Bobbi's encouragement, I have been addressing the greater underlying structural problems through Chiropractic treatment. As a result of the ENM treatments, Danny's tissue no longer looks and feels tight and rigid, rather, he moves, looks and feels more 'rounded' and 'soft'; he even shows 'suspension' in his movement! My horse has become happy and bright again and now stands proud and square! Danny feels better than when I got him. When I ride him now, I’ve noticed Danny feels as though he actually enjoys his work - no more head tossing, no more running off, and finally he is carrying a rhythm in all gaits (which had always been an issue before)! These days, Danny feels like a ‘made horse’ that enjoys putting in a good days work!
I would recommend Bobbi Jackson and her work to anyone. Her educated eyes and hands, and her compassionate and ever-hopeful approach have turned me from a skeptic into a true believer! I have hopes that now that Danny is more balanced and uses himself in a more organized fashion, he will even stop having continual problems with abscesses; it has been four months and so far there haven't been any new abscesses!
Tea U., Hunter/Jumper/Eq. Trainer, Pennington, NJ.