Many horse riders know it’s important to cool their horses’ legs after exercise. Cryotherapy – the use of very cold temperatures – is used for short periods of time after exercise or injury to minimise swelling and inflammation and kickstart the recovery process. But what are you really trying to achieve when cooling your horse’s legs?
What Are the Benefits of Cryotherapy?
One of the main purported benefits of cold treatment is the associated reduction in tissue metabolism, cell activity, and enzyme reactions (1,2). This means that you are preventing or delaying the inflammatory response.
Metabolic enzymatic activity decreases by half for every 10°C decrease in tissue temperature from normal body temperature (2). Cryochaps have been found to drop temperatures by over this 10 degrees significantly more than cooing clay, water evaporative boots and cooling gels.
See Evaluation of the Cooling Efficacy of Different Equine Leg Cooling Methods by David Marlin and published in Comparative Exercise Physiology for more information.
Temperatures between 10°C and 11°C have been suggested for effective inhibition of metabolism and minimisation of secondary tissue damage.
Studies using internal temperature probes have found that internal tissue temperature does drop to around 10 degrees when using ice wraps on the horse’s lower limb.
Cryochaps Cooling Boots for Horses
Cryochaps ice boots help you bring the benefits of cryotherapy to your horse, wherever you go. Our versatile, effective cooling boots for horses are easy to use and you can even take them to competitions, fun rides or arena hire using our Cryochaps cool bag. We have created a knee-to-fetlock ice boot designed to cover all the major soft tissues in the lower leg, as well as a handy equine ice wrap that is great for knees, hocks and pasterns. The Cryochaps K2F cooling boots are available as a single boot, pair or quad set, whilst the Cryochaps Absolute Wrap is available as a pair.