Equiband System


Equicore Equiband System

Helen is one of two UK distributors for the Equiband System by Equicore, Inc. (www.equicoreconcepts.com)

Helen recommends the Equiband for both ridden and unridden use as an excellent aid to supporting and developing core muscles. This is achieved by use of two bands, each connected to the Equiband saddle pad.

The abdominal band stimulates the abdominal musculature and is especially indicated for horses that have recovered from a colic surgery, have poor (inverted) posture, and in clinical cases such as diagnosed conditions of the back including ‘kissing spines’.

The breech band functions to make the horse aware of the position of his hind limbs and to enhance proprioception. This band is especially indicated for horses with asymmetrical hind limb movement, poor engagement and poor development of major muscle groups, as well as horses recovering from diagnosed musculoskeletal or neurological conditions.

Equicore Equiband System

The bands may be used individually or together. Whether you will need to use one or both will depend on the reason for which the Equiband is needed, and your horse’s conformation.

Research supporting the use of Equiband was presented to the British Equine Veterinary Association Congress in September 2015. The abstract can be viewed here.

Purchase of Equiband Systems


Equibands may be purchased in Pony, Regular and Large sizes. The size will determine mainly the position of the belly band on your horse so it is important to consider size guidelines (available at the manufacturers’ website: www.equicoreconcepts.com).  

Hire of Equiband Systems

It has previously been possible to hire equiband systems for short term use. Regrettably it has become very difficult to administer this scheme and demand for purchase is so high that there simply are not enough systems available to continue to offer the hire option.  From September 2017,  Equiband systems are only available for purchase.

Spare Equibands (bands only)

Spare bands for the Equiband system (to enable several horses to have bands readily available at correct length, or to replace worn bands) are available at the cost of £40 + delivery fee.

Payment is required by cheque, BACS, or  card by phone.

Ex-hire/used Equiband systems

Subject to availability there may be a very  limited number of Equibands for sale which have previously been hired by other clients. In such cases, as used goods, these Equiband will be available for purchase at a reduced cost which will be calculated as the MRP minus hire fees received. Obviously, purchasers of these sets will not be receiving a brand new item but when available, this option may help reduce the cost of investing in the Equiband system.  THESE ITEMS ARE AVAILABLE VERY RARELY.

Order and delivery

BEFORE ORDERING: Please contact Helen by email (htompkins@btinternet.com) to enquire about availability and sizing of the Equiband system. 

Payment will be required in advance.

Equibands are dispatched by MyHermes and will require a signature on delivery.  Goods are insured for transit.  Please ensure you provide a delivery address where there will be someone able to sign for the parcel.  If you are required to return an Equiband system, you should ensure the system is sent by signed-for, insured courier delivery at your own expense.

Payment options


SHIPPING: £15 including transit  insurance and signed-for delivery
If you do not require delivery by courier (by arrangement with Helen Tompkins only) then please omit the shipping charge
  1. By cheque:
Please send a cheque made payable to ‘Helen Tompkins Veterinary Physiotherapy” for £200.00 (£185 + £15 shipping ) to Helen Tompkins Veterinary Physiotherapy, Sheltercombe Cottage, Bratton Fleming, Barnstaple EX32 7JL.
  1. BACS/Faster Payment:
BACS payments are accepted for £200 (£185 + £15 shipping). Please contact Helen Tompkins for bank details.
3.  By Card
Helen Tompkins can accept card payments by phone.  Please telephone to provide card, address and contact details to make your payment.
4.  Paypal
Payment by Paypal is accepted but will attract a £5 surcharge to cover Paypal fees.  Cost: £185 + £15 shipping + £5 admin totalling £205.
Please contact Helen Tompkins to request a Paypal invoice.

Veterinary Physiotherapy

Physiotherapy is as applicable to animals as to humans.  Physiotherapy is useful for a wide range of issues across a spectrum from recovery from injury to basic maintenance of normal range of motion.

Veterinary Physiotherapist Helen offers physiotherapy for all animals – from horses and other large farm animals to small animals and pets.

The phrase “physiotherapy” includes manual therapies such as McTimoney animal manipulation, mobilisation, and massage; electrotherapies including laser, ultrasound, interferential and tens; and exercise and rehabilitation strategies designed to help the animal’s ongoing recovery and strength.

Veterinary Physiotherapy

About Helen

Helen is a former Head Girl of a 45-horse mixed livery yard and has been involved with horses for 30 years in various capacities, including instructing.

Helen Tompkins

Following up a long term personal interest in equine physical therapy and rehabilitation,  Helen qualified as a human sports massage therapist in 1998 and ran her own busy private clinic for human remedial massage clients for two years.  She then undertook the ITEC Diploma in Equine Sports Massage, delivered by eminent Veterinary Chartered Physiotherapist Mary Bromiley, FCSP, graduating with Credit.   Helen gained valuable experience as an equine sports massage therapist working with a wide variety of horses & riders including many top level dressage horses further to completing an MSc in Animal Manipulation from the McTimoney College (in conjunction with the University of Wales).

After several years of practice, Helen gained a further Masters Degree, this time in Veterinary Physiotherapy; graduating with Merit from Harper Adams University.

Helen lectured in practical and theoretical aspects of Equine Massage Therapy to the students of the ITEC Equine Sports Massage Diploma as delivered by Mary Bromiley, FCSP for eight years until the course ended.  She is now developing a replacement career course (see Training Courses page).  She retains a particular interest in exercise therapy (dynamic and passive), rehabilitation from long term injury and development of the horse to ensure optimum performance, including ground exercises for the horse.  Helen remains busy in her clinical practice in the West Country and is fortunate to provide veterinary physiotherapy for a number of the region’s leading riders.   She also treats small and farm animals.


In addition to her husband, child and four legged family of dogs, cat and children’s pony, Helen has her own horse which she rides when time permits!

Helen Tompkins

Helen is based in Bratton Fleming, Barnstaple.
She will travel throughout Devon and Somerset to clients.  Small animals may, if wished, be brought for treatment to Bratton Fleming.

Research Interests

Helen has completed two research theses:

An investigation in to the effect of topical applications on horn moisture levels and growth rate

(Undergraduate, University of Hertfordshire)

The effect of a prescribed programme of unridden dynamic suppling exercise on range of motion of the hock joint and hindlimb stride length in the riding horse

(Postgraduate, University of Wales)

Further details of either are available on request.

Helen was recently featured on BBC Spotlight and in the Western Morning News; read the article here.


Rosanna Walters-Symons

Helen sponsors Rosanna Walters-Symons, FEI World Advanced Pony Silver medallist of 2013 with Dabernon Tiger Woods.

Tim Cheffings

From April 2015 Helen is very pleased to be sponsoring popular Devon event rider Tim Cheffings. Tim has been a valuable client for several years and details of his very promising eventing career, horses, coaching and the Downe Farm Event Centre can be found at http://www.downefarm.com/

Tim Cheffings


Horses are asked to perform in many ways.  Neck, back and muscular pain may result from even day to day activities.  If any of the following apply to your horse, he might benefit from treatment by an experienced equine physio  :
Unexplained poor or reduced performance
Napping, rearing, bucking or similar resistances
Unexplained behavioural changes, unwillingness to co-operate
Difficulty with canter leads, poor engagement, collection or extension
Problems when jumping: refusals, knocking poles, short strides, jumping flat
Appearing sensitive to grooming or cold backed on mounting
Signs of stiffness or difficulty with lateral flexion (bending)
Difficulty with shoeing or uneven shoe wear
Unlevelness, especially behind

equine physio

These problems may be caused by (amongst other things):

Poor fitting tack
Becoming cast in the stable
Poor foot balance
Dental pain
Conformation problems
Imbalanced rider
Repetitive training
Slips and falls whilst turned out, in competition or general work
Old injuries – even those which we think they have recovered from

Treatments for horses take place at the horse’s usual location.  It is preferable for your horse to be clean and dry in readiness for treatment.  Before treatment, Helen will undertake a full static assessment and dynamic gait analysis, and may need to see the horse ridden or lunged.

The treatment is only the beginning of the healing process and a careful aftercare programme will be devised which should be followed to gain maximum benefit from treatment.

Owners will be given a written report of the findings, therapy undertaken and aftercare recommendations, including “homework” exercises, to enable them to best support the treatment which has been given and continue the rehabilitative process.  It may be necessary to follow up the initial treatment with  one or two more sessions but generally Helen’s aim is to produce a long-term improvement in the horse which should result in only a 6-monthly or annual maintenance check-up being required.


Physiotherapy for animals“ Physiotherapy for animals …
for suppleness, mobility and performance ”

Helen Tompkins is a dual qualified Veterinary Physiotherapist and McTimoney Animal Practitioner based in North Devon.  She uses physiotherapeutic techniques (massage,  mobilisations, manipulation, electrotherapy, stress point therapy, exercise therapy and stretching regimes) and McTimoney Animal Manipulation techniques to address musculoskeletal problems in animals.  Although Helen mainly treats horses and dogs, she has also successfully treated other animals including cats, sheep, goats and cattle.

Helen covers Devon, North Cornwall and West Somerset.

It is a legal requirement that anyone treating an animal must have veterinary permission to do so.  Helen will contact your vet prior to treatment to confirm any relevant details and to ensure permission is forthcoming.  Where an animal presents with symptoms which may require veterinary attention (such as lameness), Helen may decline to proceed with treatment until veterinary advice has been sought.

Physiotherapy for animals