We caught up with Kamerra Brown to talk about the success she’s had using Tad Coffin’s SmartRide Rx saddle and a Thera-Tree with her 5 year old off-the track Thoroughbred, “Highest Rank.” At the 2021 Retired Racehorse Project competition in Lexington, Kentucky, Kamerra and “Hank” went into the final round with the Leading High Score for Showjumping out of 72 competitors. Some green moments led them to a 5th place finish overall, but considering all the factors, Kamerra was pleased with the performance.
“This horse is very expressive, especially in his jumping style. He is 110% exuberant all the time, everything is a production, and he doesn’t hold anything back,” she says. “The indoor ring at Kentucky is an impressive venue, with a lot of spectators, and he didn’t get to school in there because the schooling break was too exciting. I walked one circle and went out because it was way too hectic and he’s an excitable horse. When he went in to compete, the job seemed so easy and I actually think I should have been jumping him a little higher to help keep his attention. But as we never want to over face them, I had signed up for the lower height.”
Hank had only been in Kamerra’s program for a few months, and she credits Tad’s technologies with being able to start making progress with him immediately. She said he started out very nervous about the saddle. “Literally three days after riding him in Tad’s saddle, the dancing around and anxiousness ceased.”
A big part of Hank’s routine since July has been wearing the Thera-Tree device every day, before and after every ride. One of the challenges of where he is stabled is that there is not a lot of turnout, but the Thera-Tree seemed to take the place of that and she could see that the daily sessions helped him fill out and relax. “He actually looks for the Thera-Tree when I go to put it on. He takes a deep breath, like he’s saying, ‘finally, thank you.” The therapy device emits a gentle electromagnetic field of far infrared light, in the same beneficial frequencies as what living things get from the sun at dawn and dusk. Horses can comfortably wear the Thera-Tree without supervision, and can even safely lie down to relax in it, as many choose to do. Horses can also get the same wellness benefits when being ridden since Tad’s latest saddles have the same technology as the Thera-Trees.
As Assistant Professor of Equine Studies at William Woods University, Kamerra works with all types of horses, and she has seen improvements across the board with school horses of all descriptions. But with the sensitive TBs, especially as they shift careers away from the track, she’s found the biomechanical and bioenergetic advantages of Tad’s saddle and the Thera-Tree to be invaluable.
“Beyond typical racehorse things like starting out on the right lead being sometimes more difficult, I’d say the improvement in Hank’s ability to use himself evenly and start to come through has really been evident with Tad’s technologies. And they just relax and worry less.”
One of the other interesting things Kamerra told us is that when other horses in the barn get chiropractic adjustments, Hank has been assessed, but has not needed to be worked on. Another horse in the program that shares the Thera-Tree with Hank is a mare with kissing spine and she is showing so much improvement that the device has become something they don’t want to be without. The members of the riding club held a fundraiser to secure a Thera-Tree for a year after seeing how much it helps the horses. We’ll be following up with a story on “Ivy” the kissing spine mare that is improving with Thera-Tree therapy.