Game Ready™ Ice Therapy Used at Otter Creek
by Lydia Major
May 27, 2010 - The CSDEA was very pleased to partner with the University of Minnesota Equine Center (UMEC) to bring Game Ready™ Ice Therapy to the competitors at the 2010 Otter Creek Horse Trial and CIC */**. The CSDEA felt that this project was an important part of the horse welfare portion of our mission as well as a wonderful opportunity to partner with UMEC. We had an excellent response from the riders, who filled our schedule to overflowing, and from the horses, who seemed to relax and enjoy the therapy and the attention.
The UMEC team used special bandages to pack hind legs with ice and then wrap them with polo bandages to provide compression. They then wrapped the Game Ready™ boots, which looked like tall shipping boots, around the front legs and hooked up hoses from the Game Ready™ system to the boots. The system pumped ice water and air into the boots, providing cooling and pressure to the legs from knee to hoof. Cooling and compression help hot tendons cool, reduce inflammation, and protect the legs from injury.
As always, the credit for the success of this project goes to dedicated volunteers. In particular, I would like to thank Dr. Anna Firshman, a UMEC faculty clinician, specializing in internal medicine and rehabilitation services, who helped organize and run the project. She brought Dr. Sara Wefel (from the West Metro practice), Dr. Megan Swabb (from Large Animal Surgery), Maggie McQuestion (a veterinary technician), and Sarah Wahlert and Jeana Atkins (both UMN veterinary students). They worked for more than ten hours on Saturday without complaint. I would also like to thank Bob and Erin Owen, Lisa Borgia, and Alicia Cozine, all CSDEA volunteers who helped organize, set-up, run, and otherwise support the project.
We hope we will be able to bring ice therapy to future events.