Registered Massage Therapy

“The practice of massage therapy is the assessment of soft tissue and joints of the body and the treatment and prevention of dysfunction, injury, pain and physical disorders of the soft tissues and joints by manual and physical methods to develop, maintain, rehabilitate or augment physical function to relieve pain and promote health.” – Proposed scope of practice definition for massage therapy

Mikaela uses a blend of techniques to try and give the most effective treatments for her clients. These techniques include:
Myofascial release – Uses specific holds to target the release of fascia to help relax contracted muscles, decrease pain and improve blood flow.
General Swedish – As the foundation of massage, these techniques use deep long strokes to promote circulation and relaxation of muscles.
Trigger point therapy – Uses a specific hold, pressure or stretch to target the release of a “trigger point” often giving the patient immediate relief pain and can increase range of motion at affected joints.
Muscle energy technique – is a variety of techniques aimed at improving musculoskeletal function and decreasing pain by activating the patients muscles in a very specific way to affect the alignment of a joint or increase range of motion.
Passive and active stretching techniques – Using specific stretching holds both during the treatment and for homecare to amplify the effects of the treatment.
Joint mobilizations– uses passive movement of a joint to increase joint space and nutrition, increase range of motion and decrease pain.
Craniosacral Therapy– uses gentle pressure techniques applied to structures directly affecting the craniosacral system (the system encompassing your brain and spinal cord). These techniques are used to help release deep tension, relieve pain and promote health of the central nervous system and the body as a whole.

Mikaela believes that educating her clients and giving them appropriate exercises to perform at home is a key part of massage therapy treatments. Her goal is to support and work together with each client to make sure they receive a safe and effective treatment.
Her passion throughout school was, and still is, learning about musculoskeletal anatomy and kinesiology as they are the foundation of movement and support in the body. Understanding how each muscle, ligament, bone, etc. works not only individually, but together is not only fascinates her, it helps her create effective and efficient treatments. What to expect from your massage treatment:

  1. Interview and assessment of the area of concern where she will work with you to create a plan and goals for the treatment (up to 10 min)
  2. Treatment of areas of concern
  3. Homecare stretch and strengthening exercises and reassessment (up to 5 min)

Equine Massage Therapy

Equine massage therapy is massage therapy specifically designed for horses. As it is increasing in popularity, more and more horse owners are realizing the importance of massage therapy for their horses. Equine massage therapy can play a significant role with:

  • Healing or maintenance of an injury
  • Soreness associated with strengthening and conditioning
  • General soreness issues (usually with a root problem that needs addressing)
  • Injury prevention
  • Increasing circulation
  • Improving movement and flexibility
  • Behavioral issues related to physical problems

Horses, like people, become sore, tense, and stressed for different reasons. Once they understand you are trying to help them they are amazing at communicating in their own way, and will often tell you where the problem is. Mikaela’s goal is to create a conversation with the horse, and open a dialogue where the horse is honest and free to tell her whatever it needs.

What to expect from an equine massage:
Every equine massage includes a gait assessment, a full body assessment and from there Mikaela typically picks three areas to treat and focus on. Either your horse or their level of soreness determines the areas chosen. She does not put time constraints on equine massages; Mikaela believes each horse settles into a massage in their own way and that it is unfair to limit the horse’s treatment based on time. She bases her sessions on how much time each horse is comfortable with and how long it takes to get the job done. Initial visits may take up to 2 hours, however the average treatment takes between 1-1.5 hours.

Please note that equine massage therapy does not replace veterinary care. If you have any concerns please contact your veterinarian.

Mikaela likes to approach each equine massage with the question of “why is this horse sore?”. We as horseback riders introduce and control so many things in the horse’s world such as: saddles, riding accessories, riding styles, conditioning techniques, etc. Each of these things play a huge role in the maintenance and training of your horse, and if one of these parts is not working it may create a physical issue. We have to keep in mind that we may indirectly be the reason behind the horse’s issues, and we need to be willing to intervene and change whatever that may be. Mikaela approaches each massage with this in mind. Along with helping to provide relief for your horse she is also here to problem solve and help you figure out what may be causing the problem in the first place.

Mikaela learns a lot through watching the partnership between horse and rider. Horse’s movement tells her a lot, and so does the rider’s. For this reason she may offer a free riding assessment for horse and rider pairs looking to fix whatever the problem may be.

About Our Therapist

Mikaela Schubkegel graduated from the 3000 hour Registered Massage Therapy diploma program at the West Coast College of Massage Therapy and has been a fully registered massage therapist since 2014. Her training includes an in-depth knowledge of: anatomy, physiology, kinesiology, hydrotherapy, pain and stress management, clinical management, over 70 pathologies and their appropriate treatments. Through continuing education she also achieved Level 2 Craniosacral Therapy training through the Upledger Institute and viceral manipulation level 1 through the Barral Institute

When Mikaela is not working with clients you will most likely find her working with horses. Along with riding regularly, she is a certified equine massage therapist through Equanimity Edge. This course included treatment techniques such as swelling drainage, muscle relaxation, deep fascial manipulation, stretching, strengthening, recognizing and treating behavioral issues through their relationship anatomically. Mikaela is building a practice where she can work together with both horse and rider to offer a balanced perspective to positively enhance their partnership.

Horses and riding have been a passion of hers for as long as she can remember. Mikaela focuses her riding in the discipline of dressage and has shown up to level 3, schooling 4th level and intermediate movements. She has also spent 4 years semi-focused on jumping, schooling up to 3'6, but working with much more advanced jumpers also. Through her own riding experiences she has learned to relate the information she was taught through her registered massage therapy training to the way she rides and works with horses.

Massage therapy is truly a wonderful type of health care. It is evidence based, holistic and each treatment is tailored to fit the specific needs of each client. Whether your concerns are large or small, Mikaela will strive to meet the needs and goals of every client.