The Masterson Method® is an integrated method of equine bodywork developed by Jim Masterson to release neuromuscular tension in the horse. In contrast to most bodywork modalities—and aligned with equine-facilitated activities—the horse actively participates in the process of releasing tension as the person follows the horse’s response to very light touch. In fact, if the horse does not participate, it does not work!

There are human benefits in practicing The Masterson Method, as well as benefits to the horse: by learning to read and follow the horse’s responses to touch, those embarking on the practice may improve their connection with the horse, create a trusting bond, develop greater self-awareness, and even deepen their quiet and mindful presence.

The use of the Masterson Method has expanded to equine-facilitated therapy and learning settings to actively benefit clients as well as horses. We have observed clients—including but not limited to at-risk youth, veterans, and people with eating disorders or recovering from addiction—who practiced the Masterson Method in a safe and structured setting become more relaxed, focused, and connected in their interaction with their horse.