Welcome to the Equestrian Wellness Blog!

Welcome to the Equestrian Wellness Blog!

Hello and welcome to our Equestrian Wellness Blog.

The aim is to evaluate with a critical lens various fitness offerings, training techniques, new scientific literature and a little bit of miscellaneous!

About Adrienne

Adrienne Schmitke has been riding horses since 1999. Along with her parents, she runs a successful boarding operation turned sport horse breeding farm in Southeastern Ontario.

She competed in jumpers on the Ontario and Quebec 'A' Gold circuit and breaks and trains most of her homebred warmbloods. 

She has trained with Olympians in all 3 Olympic disciplines, and operates her farm under the philosophy of "horse before human".

Adrienne completed her Bachelor's degree at Queen's University in Health Studies and is completing her Master's degree in Equine Science at the Royal (Dick) Veterinary College at University of Edinburgh. 

After a freak accident with one of her horses, shattering her foot, Adrienne realized the need for equestrian-specific manual therapy. She realized it was difficult to explain the physical stressors of the sport to those who did not even believe riding was a sport! This realization lead her to complete her Registered Massage Therapy training in Toronto, Ontario. 

She also holds a certification in Equine Massage Therapy. Adrienne was the first Canadian to take part in Neurokinetic Therapy training for Equines, held in Petaluma, CA. NKT is a great tool for assessment.

Adrienne focuses her practice on getting to the 'why' of dysfunction and alleviating compensatory patterns that are often caused by previous injury. She uses fascial release techniques, soft tissue release therapy, and cupping therapy to decrease adhesions and increase one's range of motion.

The Importance of Science in the Stable

Horse riding is a sport steeped in tradition. Not content with simply doing things the way they've always been done, Adrienne wanted to contribute to the available scientific literature through research and review. Through her studies in Equine Science, Adrienne realized that there is a large body of research relating to our horses, but it does not seem to be well-known by the very people who look after and love our 4 legged friends.

Why is what we already know not put into practice?
Why does tradition and science have such a disconnect in our equestrian community?

Fit to Compete was born out of a desire to improve the athletic performance, lives and welfare, and knowledge base of our horses and riders.


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