Stretch Exercises for Horses

Build and Preserve Mobility, Strength, and Suppleness

Jean-Michel Boudard



A highly illustrated guide to the most effective and beneficial stretches for horses.

Stretching is a necessary part of any athlete's exercise and maintenance routine. Long recognized to promote flexibility and prevent injury in humans, stretching can bring the same benefits to horses when made part of their daily care. This illustrated handbook makes it easy for riders and owners to include simple exercises that improve performance and increase longevity in their usual training schedule.

Optimal equine performance requires strength, flexibility, coordination, and resilience. The practice of stretching makes it possible to develop and maintain all these elements in harmony. It also provides valuable transition time from hours that may have been spent in a stall to the gymnastic expectations we have for horses under saddle: rhythm and elasticity of the gaits, willingness to go forward, beautiful and dynamic movement, reliability and surefootedness, and more.

With clear descriptions of the anatomical and physiological principles of stretching, readers gain an understanding of the exercises that may be best for their horses and disciplines in mind. Then, detailed instructions are provided explaining:

  • Simple, quick-to-do joint and muscle evaluations.
  • Stretches targeting specific muscle groups.
  • Stretches to promote suppleness and relaxation.
  • Stretches to warm up and prepare for work.
  • Stretches for cool down and recovery.

    Color photographs demonstrate evaluations and stretches step-by-step, supplemented by detailed explanations of what you may discover in your horse's reactions. Perhaps best of all, readers are provided a therapeutic reason for more hands-on time with their horses, and new ways to listen to him, to understand him, and to ultimately improve his well-being and performance.

    Additional Information

    Author: Jean-Michel Boudard

    Format: Hardcover

    Page Count: 128

    Illustrations: 110 color photos & 38 color illustrations

    ISBN: 9781646010936

    By Jean-Michel Boudard

    Jean-Michel Boudard has passionately practiced osteopathy (physical manipulation of the body's muscle tissue and bones) in the worlds of both high-level human athletics and top equestrian sport for more than thirty years. Since 1996 he has specialized in stretching, massage, energy work, manual postural regulation, and osteopathy for horses. Having developed several original methods specifically for horses and riders, Boudard teaches his techniques in Europe and the United States. He is based in Paris, France.

    Catskill Horse Magazine Says:

    "This is an amazing resource that should be a part of every performance horse owner’s library."