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Strengthening and ensuring muscle development of your horse Logo PaskaCheval

Whether your animal is a foal with a promising pedigree that doesn't seem to be developing enough in terms of its growth curve, a horse coming out of a period of convalescence and needing to get back in shape, or even a competitor in the height of competition or racing season, the muscular system of horses can be subjected to varying situations. In certain cases, it may be necessary to help muscles develop or become stronger, or to even provide them with support so that they recover better after physical effort. Explanations.

For the sake of clarity: in order to know if horses in good health a priori – i.e. with no known pathology – are correctly developing their muscle mass and can withstand the physical efforts required of them, the first thing to do is to make sure that the animal has a well-balanced feed intake and is given a balanced diet that meets the essential needs of each individual. Once this prerequisite has been met, and alongside sustained and daily observations by the owner, trainer or rider of the horse in question, it will then be possible to provide your animal with supplements, if needed, to favour good muscle growth and recovery.

Optimising muscle building

Muscle development in horses is intrinsically related to the fact that horses are subjected to regular physical activity. Given this physical activity, and in order to provide the body with the energy and ingredients necessary to build muscle mass, the feed ration must therefore be appropriate for each individual, depending on age, weight and workload (frequency, rhythm and intensity). However, in some cases, horses do not assimilate all the benefits of their diet, which then becomes a ‘limiting factor’ to their muscle development. Just like with humans, the qualitative aspect of food can indeed be a problem even if the quantitative aspect is present. Certain feed supplements can avoid this phenomenon as much as possible and optimise not only the assimilation of essential nutrients, but also all the energy contained in the ration, which is essential for muscle development. For example, the addition of amino acids and live yeast to the ration will reduce nutrient ‘waste’ as much as possible and help optimise its benefits. These nutrients favour good muscle development and physical harmony, while also possibly showing the gene expression profile of a horse, while guaranteeing the most natural growth curve possible.

Horse muscle composition

Acting on resistance and recovery

Some horses may sometimes take a long time to physically recover from a competition, a race, or a more intense than usual training session. If in doubt, and to make sure that horses can withstand the efforts required of them and that their muscular system isn’t affected negatively, a blood test can then be carried out. Once any possible muscular deficiencies have been detected and taken into account, or even before reaching that point, solutions exist to help horses recover physically during periods of repeated and/or more intense effort. Muscle effort results in the production of free radicals, i.e. waste products (oxidants), which can destroy muscle cells. Thus, the intake of antioxidants (e.g. vitamin E, vitamin C, group B vitamins, amino acids or even selenium, among others) helps, especially, prevent the oxidation and destruction of muscle cells, which cause a lack of stamina, cramps and, in pathological cases, myositis.

To support horses throughout their sporting career and their growth, PaskaCheval offers a complete range to optimise muscle building, as well as to ensure good resistance and muscle recovery

Our field experts are available to advise you.

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Paskacheval is a range of plant-based feed supplements and external care products designed to enhance the performance and well-being of every horse.