When will a Horse Benefit from McTimoney Treatment?

The horse’s spine is fairly rigid and normal movement such as bending and stretching are well tolerated. Extreme activities which force the joint to its maximum of movement cause the muscle around this joint to tighten in the attempt to correct. In most cases this self-protection of the horse’s body will be enough to realign the joint. However, if the problem is repetitive or the influence is too great, the misalignment will persist! The muscles around the spinal joint can go into spasm, causing the joint to stay in a fixed position. This will result in pain, joint inflammation and even nerve irritation.

Common reasons for a McTimoney Treatment?

  • Following a fall, accident getting cast in stable
  • Following dental issues, orthopaedic conditions
  • Unexplained deterioration in usual performance
  • MOT pre- competition season

McTimoney treatment can help relieve an animal’s pain and restore movement after they’ve injured themselves or from problems caused by conformation, dental, feet or condition issues. Also horses are subject to various strains and stresses to their musculoskelatal system during daily activities. Slipping in the field, playing, turning tightly, repetitive movements, ill-fitting tack or rugs, unbalanced riders can all lead to misalignments. These misalignments, if not corrected can cause discomfort and reduced performance.

Signs that a Horse may Benefit from McTimoney Treatment

  • Asymmetry, such as stiffness on one rein or a disunited canter
  • Unexplained resistances (bucking, rearing, refusing)
  • Limb dragging or odd, irregular gait action
  • Uneven muscle development or atrophy
  • Sore or cold backs, uneven pressure from saddle or saddle slipping to one side
  • Uneven hoof or shoe wear
  • Tilting head
  • Carrying tail to one side
  • Uncharacteristic behaviour or temperament
  • Unexplained deterioration in usual performance

What to Expect from a McTimoney Treatment?
The initial visit will take approx. 1hr, subsequent visits will take approx. 45mins.

1. Case History-A full history of your animal is recorded to gain a clear understanding of your animal and also to assess any possible contraindications to treatment. Details are taken of any previous injury, current concerns or changes in behaviour and an impression of the animal’s exercise pattern and general lifestyle.

2. Conformation evaluation-Conformation, condition, blemishes, muscle tone and muscular asymmetry are assessed.

3.Gait Analysis-You will be asked to walk, trot and turn the animal in hand. This is to assess the animal’s movement and flexibility. 

4. Palpation-By hand, assessment for misalignments of the spine, pelvis and any other relevant joints are undertaken as well as assessing for tension, spasm in the associated muscles and discomfort.

5. Treatment-Problem areas, identified during palpation, will be treated using very precise and rapid adjustments to correct the misalignment and reduce any muscle spasm. Each treatment is individually tailored to the needs of your animal.

6. AftercareAfter treatment, the healing process continues for a few days. Aftercare usually involves rest and/or limited exercise for a few days. Advise will also be provided about any appropriate stretching regime and/or exercise programme so that the owner can continue the rehabilitation process and gain the most from the treatment.

7. Future Visits-Some animals may require several treatments, depending on the nature of the problem. However, it is recommended that all animals receive regular check-ups to maintain optimum performance and health and as a preventative measure.

How Will a Horse Benefit from McTimoney Treatment?


  • Improve posture, muscle symmetry and development
  • Improve suppleness and balance on both reins
  • Improve impulsion, ability to track up and engage hindquarters 
  • Improve irregular gait that has not been eliminated by a veterinary examination
  • Improve effects of uneven shoe wear


  • Improve movement and willingness to work, e.g. jump,lateral work, one rein stiffness
  • Improve behaviour and performance (e.g. uncharacteristic rearing, bucking, jogging, stumbling)
  • Alleviate grumpiness when being groomed or tacked up