The Masterson Method Equine Specialist student will learn how to facilitate bodywork as an activity that EAAT participants learn to do on learning, coaching, or therapy horses. It’s a wonderful way to restore the health of horses on the job while also benefitting participants or even volunteers!
Masterson Method Equine Specialist Certification requires completion of the following training components, in sequence:
- Attend the 3-day Masterson Method Equine Specialist Training. You will learn the basic principles and techniques of The Masterson Method, and best practices for facilitating bodywork as an activity that participants learn to do on learning, coaching or therapy horses (see prerequisites below);
- Complete fieldwork. This includes follow-up practice assignments customized to each student’s skill level to gain competency in working with various horses, including those horses serving in equine-assisted learning or therapy programs; and
- Pass the certification exam. This will demonstrate your knowledge, skills and competencies as a Masterson Method Equine Specialist.
Who Is Training For?
MMES certification training is for EAAT professionals who wish to gain a new skill and activity to share with their students, participants, or clients, and who wish to create an atmosphere of caring and connection with horses. We expect individuals in the following fields will be interested in certification: hippotherapy clinical specialists, therapeutic or adaptive riding instructors, equine-facilitated psychotherapists, equine-assisted learning instructors or coaches, etc. Masterson Method equine bodywork students and other equine professionals who are interested in partnering with EAAT programs are welcome to attend.
MMES 3-Day Training
Students will first learn the basic principles and techniques of The Masterson Method, and will then learn how to offer the facilitated bodywork session as an equine-assisted activity. Participants will—
- Learn how to practice the fundamental principles of The Masterson Method equine bodywork through following the horse’s responses
- Gains hands-on experience practicing select techniques on EAAT horses
- Learn about the unique needs of a lesson, coaching or therapy horse
- Learn the specific roles and responsibilities of a Masterson Method Equine Specialist and others involved in offering a safe and structured facilitated bodywork activity
- Plan and practice components of a facilitated bodywork session using role-play
- Understand safety guidelines and legal obligations as they pertain to EAAT participants and horses
- Have a minimum two years of experience caring for and working with horses on the ground
- Read the Beyond Horse Massage book prior to attending
*If you have attended The Masterson Method Beyond Horse Massage Weekend Seminar, you may elect to skip the first day of MMES training — which introduces students to this bodywork approach and select techniques — and attend days 2 and 3 — which covers the skills and knowledge needed to facilitate the bodywork as an equine-assisted activity — for a $200 discount (fee of $395). Those who are primarily interested in doing bodywork on their own or others’ horses will want to attend the Beyond Horse Massage Weekend Seminar at some point in time.
MMES Fieldwork & Certification Exam
Fieldwork assignments are designed to ensure that students gain practical skills in applying The Masterson Method on a wide variety of horses, including standard working horses and those serving in EAAT programs. Fieldwork will be standardized for all students and, as may be relevant, may be individualized to further meet the needs and enhance the competence of each participant. Students document their work sessions with 7-9 horses, including identifying any challenges which arose and what they have learned, and receive written feedback for consideration. Students also practice facilitating the bladder meridian technique and provide a write-up reflecting on that experience. Upon successful completion of the Fieldwork, students will complete a final exam to assess their knowledge of The Masterson Method and its use in EAAT settings and their overall readiness for certification. Read more and register for Fieldwork.
Once students complete the above MMES Certification requirements, they sign the Masterson Method Equine Specialist Code of Ethics and become a Certified Masterson Method Equine Specialist. See our Certified Specialists page for bios of those who have completed this certification.