1. Laying on of Hands – a resting position to connect with the horse
2. Nerve Stroking – uses the finger tips or palms of the hands to allow your horse to increase his awareness of his body, helps to relax the horse and affects the central nervous system.
3. Effleurage – a gliding stroke done with the palm, whole hand, fingers and or arm. This movement opens the tissue/muscle to get ready for other movements.
4. Petrissage – is one of the main movements in massage which is a kneading action to increase the circulation to the tissue and to soften the muscle tissue. It also prepares for deeper therapy.
5. Compression – uses the palm or fist in a lift and press motion. Another form of compression is direct pressure using a hand, thumb, arm or elbow into the muscle and waiting for the muscle to soften.
6. Vibration – is used to affect muscles and joints below the superficial tissue. Vibration in a superficial way will stimulate and soothe your horse, or used more deeply will help to break up restrictions and adhesions within the tissue.
7. Friction – is only used once the muscle and tissue is ready and open (see above techniques), it is used to break up adhesions and scar tissue.
8. Shaking – is used to increase circulation and help a horse relax an area he is holding tension in.
9. Tapotement – is used to stimulate and wake up the horse, also to increase circulation. It can be used prior to exercise to warm up the horse’s muscles. There are many variations of Tapotement.
10. Effleurage - is then used to close the muscles and drain the area of fluids that have been loosened up in the muscle. It can also be used after a heavy workout to drain the area of toxins and lactic acid.