BarnManager Q&A With: Madeline Finley

BarnManager Q&A With: Madeline Finley

Madeline Finley, manager at Maarten Huygens Horse Sales based out of Wellington, FL, and North Salem, NY

What are three things that are always in your ring bag and why?

I like to travel light. I try to only carry the essentials. With that being said, my ring bag is always equipped with a towel, a hole punch, and cookies for the horses. I like to keep things very simple.

What’s something you learned early in your career that has stuck with you?

I’m very big on cleanliness and organization. Some would say it’s an obsession for me. I find it very hard to work and operate out of a messy environment. I think it’s safer for the people and the horses when the barn aisle is tidy and everything is in its place.

Who inspires you the most in the industry and why?

Maarten Huygens and Madeline Finley Photo courtesy of Madeline Finley

The person who inspires me the most in this industry is without a doubt Maarten Huygens. He came to the United States at a young age, rode, groomed, worked hard, and eventually became the successful businessman he is today. It is a story similar to how so many of us started out, including myself. Working for Maarten is really special. He is one of the most genuine, down-to-earth individuals with so much knowledge and passion for the sport. I am always proud to stand by his side.

What is your best tip for staying organized during a busy show day?

Communication always! Working in a sales barn can be very chaotic at times, but as long as everyone is communicating the day will run smoothly.

What is one horse show you have never been to but would love to attend?

I have never been to a horse show in Europe. I would really like to experience that at least once in my life. If I had my pick, it would be the Dublin Horse Show!

Mares, geldings, or stallions? Why?

I love a mare with an attitude and a big heart. I like to think those two things go hand in hand. When you can form a bond with a tough mare she will do anything for you; she will be your best friend.

If you were a horse, what would you be and why?

I would like to be a western horse on the Yellowstone Ranch. That’s my favorite show, and I always wonder what it would be like to live there.

Have questions about utilizing BarnManager or want to give it a try for yourself? Request a live demo here!

BarnManager is designed to be a part of your team, with the compatibility and credentials necessary to improve communication, simplify the management of horses, and get you out of the office, off the phone calls, and into the barn with the horses you care about! Click here to get a free demo and find out more!

BarnManager Horse Health Series: Your Equine Chiropractic Questions Answered

Most horse owners say they take better care of their equine partners than themselves. While many maintenance treatments and products could be considered a luxury, veterinary chiropractic adjustments do not fall into that category. Palm Beach Equine Clinic’s Dr. Ryan Lukens is a certified Veterinary Medical Manipulation Practitioner from the Chi Institute in Ocala, FL, and recommends all horses can benefit from regular chiropractic adjustments.

From minis to draft horses and pasture pets to top sport mounts, the parasympathetic stimulation triggered by chiropractic adjustments improves multiple facets of health for any equine. Therefore, veterinary chiropractic adjustments improve more than just athletic performance, and for sport horses, Dr. Lukens considers them a necessity.

According to Dr. Lukens, the benefits of veterinary chiropractic adjustments include:

  • Relief of pain and soreness
  • Increase in range of motion
  • Reversal of muscle atrophy through increased frequency of nerve activation
  • Increase in speed and accuracy of athletic movement
  • Adjustments can help calm the “fight or flight” response

Dr. Lukens outlines the “must know” details for any sport horse owner:

  1. Major Adjustment Points

There are 205 bones that comprise the skeleton of a horse, however, the equine chiropractor does not just adjust the skeleton. It is important to improve motion at segmented levels that involve bones and the supporting soft tissue structures and nerves. “Motion palpation” is used to test moving segments. If a segment is not moving freely in the appropriate directional planes, the equine chiropractor can perform an adjustment to correct the restriction of this movement.

Photo courtesy of Palm Beach Equine Clinic

Major adjustment points include the:

  • Mandible and tongue
  • Temporomandibular joint (TMJ)
  • Poll and cervical vertebrae
  • Withers and sternum
  • Front and hind limbs
  • Thoracic and lumbar vertebrae
  • Pelvis/sacrum
  1. Every Horse Is Different

Veterinary chiropractic adjustments can be different for each horse and are often based on their discipline. The most common adjustments for various performance horses include:

Dressage: Balance is essential for dressage. The major points of balance affected by veterinary chiropractic work are the TMJ, hyoid, sternum, and cervical facets. Other common adjustments affected by lateral work include the shoulders, elbows, and pelvis.

Hunter/Jumper: Hunters and jumpers typically benefit from vertebral adjustments of the lumbar and upper cervical regions, ribs, sternum, front distal limbs, and the shoulders.

Eventing: Most eventing horses benefit from adjustments to the pelvis, all cervical vertebrae, TMJ, ribs, and the shoulders.

Western Disciplines: Reiners benefit from adjustments to their right shoulder, lower cervical facets, withers, and pelvis. Barrel racers benefit from shoulder, sacroiliac, and hip joint adjustments.

  1. Tips for Before and After an Adjustment

It is important that dental and farrier work is not overdue before veterinary chiropractic adjustments. Sharp dental points can cause adjustments to hold for shorter periods of time, especially in the poll, TMJ, and cervical vertebrae. In addition, if a horse is currently not shod well or has recently pulled a shoe, the adjustments of their limbs, back, pelvis, and sacrum may not provide long-lasting benefits.

Horses can be ridden and have a normal day before an appointment. They should not be ridden for the remainder of the day after an adjustment, but they can be turned out to pasture. Horses can be ridden as normal the following day, and it is a good idea to follow up with the veterinarian about how they felt.

  1. Solving Common Issues

Several common issues are often solved by a veterinary chiropractic adjustment. For jumpers, changes in jumping style (i.e. landing away from a front limb, only jumping off of a certain lead) and performance (hitting more rails than normal) could indicate a lack of range of motion that can often be corrected through a proper adjustment or series of adjustments.

For dressage horses, a change in balance could result in head tilting, not working through the back, lifting the lower cervical curve, or the hind limbs not following the path of the front limbs. That balance can often be reestablished with an adjustment.

In the western disciplines, a decrease in acceleration and turning can be indicative of the need for adjustments.

  1. Choosing Your Equine Chiropractor

A veterinarian trained in chiropractic adjustments is the safest choice for the horse. A veterinarian’s extensive knowledge of anatomy and understanding of when not to adjust a horse is an important part of ensuring the horse’s safety and well-being. If done improperly, adjustments can have adverse effects.

For a more in-depth explanation of equine chiropractic adjustments, click HERE to read the full article from Palm Beach Equine Clinic.

NOTE: These guidelines are only suggestions, and you should always follow the specific instructions from your veterinarian.  

Have questions about utilizing BarnManager or want to give it a try for yourself? Request a live demo here!

BarnManager is designed to be a part of your team, with the compatibility and credentials necessary to improve communication, simplify the management of horses, and get you out of the office, off the phone calls, and into the barn with the horses you care about! Click here to get a free demo and find out more!

Must-Watch Live Streams in May

Before some of the major summer horse shows begin, the month of May includes several exciting hunter, jumper, equitation, eventing, and dressage competitions both nationally and internationally. Learn about some of BarnManager’s favorite upcoming horse shows and where to watch them no matter where you find yourself this month.

Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association National Championship: May 5-8, 2022 – The Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association (IHSA) National Championship takes place at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex and Expo Center in Harrisburg, PA. Collegiate riders who have qualified for the championship will compete in Hunter Seat and Western classes.

Where to watch: ClipMyHorse.TV

International Jumping de La Baule: May 5-8, 2022 – This international competition takes place in La Baule, France, and includes five-star show jumping competition. The two main classes will be the Nations Cup – Ville de La Baule on Friday, May 6, and the Rolex Grand Prix Ville de La Baule on Sunday, May 8.

Where to watch: Horse & Country

Marbach International Horse Trials: May 8-10, 2022 – The Marbach International Horse Trials are held in Marbach, Germany, at one of the oldest stud farms in the world, The Marbach Stud. This event will have both four-star and two-star eventing competition.

Where to watch: Horse & Country

I.C.E. Horseboxes All England Dressage Festival: May 11-14, 2022 – The I.C.E. Horseboxes All England Dressage Festival will take place in Hickstead, England. The show has three arenas featuring international top-level dressage competition.

Where to watch: Horse & Country

Longines Global Champions Tour (LGCT) Madrid: May 13-15, 2022 – The Longines Global Champions Tour (LGCT) Madrid is the first European event on the circuit. The show is held at the Club de Campo Villa de Madrid. LGCT Madrid will have an international field of show jumping horse and rider combinations and feature Global Champions League competition on a beautiful grass arena.

Where to watch: GCTV

Old Salem Farm Spring Show Week II: May 17-22, 2022 – The second week of the Old Salem Farm Spring Show in North Salem, NY, includes hunter, jumper, and equitation competition. The show will be a World Championship Hunter Rider (WCHR) event and also offer four-star show jumping classes. Junior equitation riders will compete for the top prize in the Governor’s Perpetual Hunt Seat Cup.

Where to watch: ClipMyHorse.TV

Devon Horse Show and Country Fair: May 26-June 5, 2022 – The Devon Horse Show and Country Fair is one of the oldest and largest outdoor multi-breed competitions in the United States. Located in Devon, PA, this event will showcase some of the best hunter, jumper, and equitation competition in the country. Thursday, June 2, will feature two highlight classes, the $25,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby as well as the Sapphire Grand Prix of Devon.

Where to watch: USEF Network