Welcome to EN’s Product Review series! Who doesn’t love shopping, especially when the object of your search is new gear for yourself or your horse? As an enthusiast of all products equine, I LOVE trying out new gear, which is why I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to try out products. Please join me as I narrate my personal journey of trying out all of the products featured. While I will make no recommendations, I hope that you simply have fun and find entertainment while reading about my many adventures of trying new products, and that hearing about my personal experiences might help give you factors to consider when you are on your own quest for new gear.
By day, I’m an office worker — by morning and night the rest of the time, I’m a writer, rider, and I manage my own small farm. Suffice it to say that things can get busy, though that may be quite an understatement. Keeping three horses in work takes a lot of time. But that pales in comparison to all of the property maintenance that has to be done around the farm.
Generally speaking, I enjoy doing chores around the farm. It’s good, honest work that leaves you with a sense of accomplishment once you have finished up. There are tasks that I’m convinced that no one in their right mind would enjoy (like cleaning the chicken coop). But I like tackling chores like cleaning the stalls — well, as long as I don’t fall down in the manure pile like I did last week.
I’ll take that sense of accomplishment that I feel after a period of hard, manual work around the farm though. And I’ll even take the tired and sore muscles that follow right along after said work is completed. It’s just one of those after-effects that you get when you throw yourself into a task with resolve and dedication.
I often hope that my “work hard, play hard” mantra is something that my horses live by as well. While I do ask them to work hard for me, I recognize that work can take its toll. I try to be conscientious enough not to push any one of my boys too hard. And I try to take proper maintenance and care to keep each of my horses happy, sound and comfortable with their workloads.
I used to think of icing as something that was only done for horses in order to treat an injury or just after they’ve been through a very intense workout or competition. But through education, I’ve learned about the benefits of ice therapy for maintenance and, hopefully, the prevention of injuries. So I was very interested when the opportunity came up recently for me to try out a pair of Tendon Wraps from Ice Horse.
Even though my horses are not competing at the upper levels, they can still benefit from a post-workout ice therapy routine. It was fairly recent that I first became familiar with Ice Horse products, and the very unique First Ice technology that they feature. To be quick frank, I was downright fascinated when I learned about how the contents of the First Ice packs turns into a light and fluffy snow when frozen.
I couldn’t wait to get my hands on some packets to see this first hand. After the pair of Tendon Wraps arrived, I immediately unpacked them so that I could check them out. The first thing that I noticed was the fabric of the Tendon Wraps felt smooth and flexible — like they would conform nicely to the shape of a horse’s leg.
And, of course, I had to check out the subject of my fascination as well — the First Ice packs. The pair of Tendon Wraps came along with four First Ice packs. When I picked up one of the packs, I was interested to see that the material inside seemed similar to a gel-like substance—but different. I went ahead and placed the packs in the freezer to prepare them for use.
I place the First Ice packs in the freezer during the evening when I plan to use them the next day; the recommendation is to freeze them for four or more hours prior to use. And sure enough, when I run back inside after a ride and open up the freezer to grab them up to use, the packs are filled with fluffy looking snow. How cool is that?
I found that inserting the frozen First Ice packs into the Tendon Wraps is extremely easy. They slide nicely into the interior mesh pocket of the wraps, where they are held in place and ready for application.
When applying the wraps after a workout, it is recommended that you first sponge down your horse’s legs. This is done because the moisture will allow cold to transfer to the leg more effectively.
Placing the Tendon Wraps on Ripley’s legs post-workout is quite simple. First, I pull the Velcro tab that secures the First Ice packs in place. Once the First Ice packs are secured, I pull the Tendon Wrap around Ripley’s leg and secure it with the three outer Velcro straps. The wraps feel slightly stretchy when being applied, and they compress the ice against the leg once put into place.
The fluffy snow consistency of the First Ice packs always allows them to mold nicely around Ripley’s legs. And from what I can tell, his relief is immediate. I’ve been pleasantly surprised to see how relaxed Ripley gets while standing in his stall wearing the Tendon Wraps. During the first application of the wraps, I noticed that Ripley did not even get a drink while recovering from work; he usually does, but I suspect that this is because the Tendon Wraps do such an effective job at cooling.
After leaving the wraps on for awhile, I go back to remove them. The Tendon Wraps are made of Quadrispan anti-migration fabric, and they do stay in place nicely without sliding. The Velcro tabs open easily and don’t require a great deal of pulling to remove.
I am very pleased that Ripley’s legs are tight and feel cool to the touch once the Tendon Wraps are removed. I feel no residual heat when I run my hands down his legs. And the best part — even after icing after Ripley’s normal workouts, the First Ice packs still contain a soft, fluffy snow. With the First Ice technology, the packs are designed to stay cold for more than two hours.
Also, and please note that I never get tired of being able to point this out, I am very happy to see that the Ice Horse Tendon Wraps are MADE IN THE USA. The Tendon Wraps retail for $99.95 for a pair of two, and you can check them out here.
Go Fluffy Snow Inserts (With a Cold that Lasts). Go Ice Horse. Go Eventing.