Like many of you, I've seen BEMER at equestrian events and conventions for several years. I thought it was interesting but that was all, because I didn't have a personal reason to use it and probably didn't currently have a reason to need it for my horses. Although in hindsight, there were many times when I would have used it if it had been available for various horses through their endurance journey.
This past year I completed my 4th 100 miler on Alamo, also his 4th 100. Having failed my first 5 attempts (on various horses) and dealing with Alamo's early arthritis, I am very sensitive to how he feels and any changes in his mood and motion. He's had hock injections and chiropractic and body work on a regular basis and a couple sessions of another brand of PEMF to help him get to the point where completing a 100 feels like a likely outcome. I wish I'd figured out all these things earlier! Anyway, even though he completed his second one this year sound with no comment from the vet, I'd felt some stiffening toward the end when we were mostly walking. And the next morning his right hind definitely wasn't moving as fluidly.
Luckily a friend (Alexis Berryman) had her BEMER Horse set in camp and was able to provide sessions for horses after competition. We did body and legs for a short session and he looked a little less tight when we loaded up and pretty good when we got home. That wasn't a turning point for me, but just a pinpoint to consider in the future.
The reason we even entered that 100 was because my youngster Merlin who was supposed to do his 1st 50 there had fractured a splint bone. Not a problem by itself, but the worry was the healing bone would irritate the suspensory or other soft tissue and he'd been on stall rest or recovering from Shock Wave Therapy for over a month and I was getting worried. He wasn't lame, but I just didn't like how the leg felt, which is how I discovered it in the first place even after vets didn't see anything to worry about. So I talked to my friend Naomi Preston, whom I knew was a BEMER dealer, and asked if I could rent a leg cuff. She let me and within 2-3 sessions there was obvious improvement after no changes for 6 weeks. Hmm, now I had to think about how to continue with his recovery. But I'd also used the cuff on Alamo's hind just to make sure he recovered well and then got thinking about Csavannah's recovery from a suspensory pull the year before, and Alamo's check ligament pull after stepping in a hole before that. Man, I wished I'd had a BEMER then! I started doing more research and there are some really interesting studies done specifically on the BEMER brand of PEMF and some of these reasonated with me. Some of these are easily found on the BEMER site, but I'm happy to summarize a couple if you contact me.
Remembering that Alexis provided BEMER sessions, I thought I could do that with as many rides as we attend to help offset the investment. And then Naomi suggested becoming a dealer, which made sense since I already have a website and a presence in the horse world. Bam! My Horse Set was delivered about 4 days after I ordered. I was so impressed with the overall packaging and how adjustable the horse body blanket is and how many ways I can use the leg cuffs.
Leading up to one of our rides in late summer, the air quality was horrible from wild fires. Ours hadn't been as bad as many and I knew air was good at the ride so I figured we'd be good taking it slow. But I also decided to use the body blanket on our horses hoping to help clear crap out of their cells from the smoke. I don't know how much impact it had (was able to do 3 sessions before the 72 hour limit prior to competition) but the horses felt strong even though we still limited speed to aerobic levels.
I didn't have a human BEMER set and the horse set isn't recommended for human use, but I found myself in a situation where I could do a real test. I don't really feel anything in my body with BEMER (some people are more sensitive) but I got tossed from my mare and ended up with a huge purple bruise on my lower and I knew this was a test I could "measure". My circulation sucks and bruises like that usually take a month or more to fade for me. Life was pretty hectic and my horses had first claim on BEMER time but I was able to sit on the blanket 3 times in 10 days and then in the couple days after that, the bruise was gone. Not just faded, but completely gone. Gobsmacked!
As I studied more and took some BEMER academies (anyone can do that if you want more information, just let me know and I'll get you an invitation) I learned more ways to think about using it on my horses. I started doing just a 5 minute session on low intensity (part of the genius of BEMER is that it doesn't have to bombard you with more frequencies and higher intensity, it just uses the frequencies that specifically help microcirculation to let the body do what it's meant to do) prior to riding. The change in Merlin was evident from the first session. He usually dances around for saddling if he's tied. He'll stand perfectly still in the middle of the round pen so it's not a problem with the saddle, I just think he feels trapped when he's tied even though he's never had a bad experience that I know of. He also really blows up his belly for girthing. Like 5 holes bigger! And for every saddle he's been ridden in (that's been a journey by itself!) It's not really been a problem since Csavannah taught me to girth slowly, but occasionally I think I've got it tight enough before I mount and then later realize it's really loose. Since I've started the 5 minute sessions prior to saddling, he quit doing it! I still tighten some, do the breast collar, tighten more, put my water and carrots in the saddle and finish tightening, but I don't have to do it twice more after walking around.
We're also working on his confidence going out alone since it kinda sucks going through rehab with no other riders wanting to saddle up for a mile! The last ride had him up to full confidence within 5-10 minutes vs almost half the entire ride. We'll see how that tracks going forward!
I was more certain this was something my mom needed in her life, and probably me too. So we ordered a Human EVO set and just got it. The quality of the various applications is amazing. I'll be posting back with our ongoing experiences. And in January I'll be at the PNER Convention in Portland hanging out with Naomi in her BEMER booth learning more from her and chatting with whoever is interested.
Now that I've had a solid week after holiday parties (too much food and drink!) I'm seeing BEMER effects on my sleeping via my Garmin watch. I'm using the B.Body in the morning after I do horse chores, with the Plus signal since my mom has the control unit over night and uses the B.Bed application. Then I use it again around 5pm with the Plus signal off and even though that's several hours before bed, I believe that's still helping me sleep. There are 3 main changes I've seen. I am staying awake better if watching television, my restless legs seem to have calmed, and my Garmin sleep score is staying consistently higher rather than bouncing all over the place with lots of scores in the 30s and 40s. I think sleeping better when I'm supposed is logically helping me be more awake when I should be. I'm a morning person, so I'm always awake instantly in the morning.
I also had a slight injury going off one of my horses. Usually I land well with no or minimal lasting effects. But this time I was leaning forward laughing at my horse figure out what to do with an entire small bush he pulled out of the ground. He gave up and dropped it and scared the crap out of himself! I landed in some way that tweaked my upper shoulder. I expected the usual little pain that would grow over a few days and eventually taper off. Instead, the minimal pain stayed at that level. But it also didn't go away as I expected from something minimal. So I used the B.Pad applicator which wraps around the shoulders or other locations. I set up a custom program for 20 minutes, ramping up to high levels and back down. A few hours later when doing chores I realized I felt no pain at all. There was still something there as I'm thinking I tweaked more than I initially realized but after 3 days, virtually nothing. Big relief as this one could have really affected my ability to lift heavier objects.
On a really side note, my mom is loving using the BEMER and was talking to her aunt (who's a similar age) and found out they've had one for 10 years and attribute her husband still working a manual job 5 days a week at age 81 to BEMER.
The BEMER 2024 Kickoff meeting shared an aging study and one of the big conclusions was "Aging is the process of continuous impairment of microcirculation in the body." - A Microcirculation Theory of Aging by Kunlin Jin. The study had nothing to do with BEMER, but BEMER has everything to do with microcirculation!
After a full month using BEMER I saw another indication that my poor circulation may be improving! My fingers get painfully cold in temps under 34 degrees, even with gloves. This is not Raynauds. This winter I bought heated gloves (Toasty Touch for anyone interested, thin, can use your phone, can use under bigger gloves if doing dirty or rough work) and have been much happier. But sometimes I forget them or forget to charge them. This past week we had a 24 degree morning and I forgot the heated gloves, just had my regular ones that never sufficed below 34. Toward the end of scooping poop I had one finger feel a tiny bit cold, but otherwise no problems at all! Sometimes I have to take breaks in the middle of chores to go inside and breath hot air on my hands while trying not to cry from the pain. Wow, I'm not gonna miss that experience!