07 May Maintaining Equine Health, Vitality and Condition Through Times of Training Disruption
For our equine athletes required to take a break from training, or where there are interruptions to competition schedules, maintaining or providing biologically effective lighting ensures the following:
- Muscle tone and body condition are better maintained
- The immune system is strengthened to cope with new environments
- They stay in good skin
- Appetite is maintained
Using lighting effectively during these times will limit the time needed to transition back into full competition fitness when training recommences.
But, how can light influence physiology and health?
The horse’s ancestors evolved outside over millions of years and were exposed to regular changes in light and dark and high intensities of daytime light from the sun. Sunlight is naturally high in blue wavelength light. This type of light is termed ‘biologically effective’ or ‘bioactive’ as it is used by the body, not just for vision, but to keep every cell functioning rhythmically in tune with the environment. The continuous exposure to the cycles of natural daylight over time gave rise to the body clock, or circadian system, that functions to keep every organ and tissue working optimally.
When horses perceive blue light, receptors in the eye that are key for regulating the body clock stimulate the brain to send messages throughout the body so that all body systems function optimally in harmony with the environment. Poor lighting and exposure to the wrong kind of lighting at different times of day play havoc with an animal’s circadian system causing it to flatline. The consequences of this are seen as poor immunity, poor appetite, depressed behaviour and failure to perform optimally.
In times of stress, disruption or travel, exposure to consistent bio-active lighting that supports the horses’ body clock helps enhance health, immunity and maintenance of condition. Research conducted during the development of the Equilume Stable Light and the Cashel Light Mask supports these claims.
But don’t just take our word for it. Feedback from our customers speaks for itself.
“I was amazed at the overall change in the horses after about six weeks under the Equilume lights, by the condition they were carrying and the way their coats were starting to look.We were quietly surprised at how clean all the throats looked when we scoped them prior to shipping out to sales, clear of pharyngitis, all mucus and guttural pouch infections.For me, who is sceptical of most things new (because most are just gimmicks), I found these Stable Lights to be one of the only new technologies that worked really well.”
Eddie Woods, leading consignor of Grade 1 Winners in North America, Ocala, FL
“I had problems keeping a show coat on my horse. We had to body clip him at least twice a year until we started using Equilume. 8 weeks after I started using the Light Mask his hair shed so tight that he looked better than he did in July, and it was January. I highly recommend the mask to anyone, but especially those that cannot figure out a good remedy for a horse with a problem coat. Thanks for creating such a great product that is so easy to use.”
Patty Bogosh, USA