Here are some frequently asked questions about this activity, as well as the training required:
Why is specialized training required for the Masterson Method Equine Specialist?
- The responsibilities of a Masterson Method Equine Specialist are varied, including basic competence in the Masterson Method, ability to demonstrate and teach Masterson Method techniques, acute peripheral perspective, insight and sensitivity to challenges for participants, and ability to step back from interactions between horse and participant while keeping the experience safe for both. They must be flexible and competent in multi-tasking during a Masterson Method session.
- Therapy horses can have unexpected responses that the trained eye can foresee and intervene for optimal safety, while providing the utmost care and sensitivity to the participant’s wellbeing.
- Participants may also have unexpected responses, and the Masterson Method Equine Specialist is only trained to facilitate the experience of providing equine bodywork. Therefore, MM Equine Specialist must either partner with an EAAT “people professional” (instructor, therapist, or coach) or be dually-qualified to appropriately respond to the needs of participants in order to provide a safe personal experience for participants.
- The Masterson Method Equine Specialist is primarily responsible for safety around horses, while the instructor, therapist, or coach tends to the participant(s). In the case of a Masterson Method Equine Specialist having dual roles as both bodywork facilitator and people professional, a horse handler should be present to manage the horse in the event any issues arise for the participant(s).
What are considerations for the EAAT professional (instructor, mental health therapist, or coach) during a session?
EAAT professionals serve a vital role in the facilitated bodywork session. They can—
- Help the participant not take any issues that arise for the horse (e.g., a horse being excused from the session due to safety issues) as a personal failure/fault.
- Help to encourage and accommodate participants who are fearful of horses.
- Use their training to take precautions with and respond to any issues that could be triggered by the bodywork experience.
- Help bring awareness to participants who are uncomfortable with hands-on assistance.
- Appropriately reflect upon and/or process the experience with the participant after the bodywork session.
How do I get certified as a Masterson Method Equine Specialist?
There are three steps to gaining certification:
- Attend the 3-day Masterson Method Equine Specialist Training.
- Complete fieldwork, which involves practicing the bladder meridian technique with a variety of horses, practicing facilitating someone else doing the bladder meridian on a horse, sharing reflections on these sessions in writing to a mentor, and receiving feedback.
- Pass the online exam to demonstrate knowledge and competence.
See more in the Certification Training & Fieldwork page.
Are there prerequisites to attending training?
Yes, in order to attend the 3-day Masterson Method Equine Specialist Training you need at least 2 years of experience safely handling horses on the ground, and ideally 2 years of experience working as a volunteer or professional in an EAAT setting. Horse handling experience is critical to help ensure that you are experienced in reading horses’ responses and anticipating their behaviors.
What if I’ve already attended the Beyond Horse Massage Weekend Seminar?
If you’ve already attended the Beyond Horse Massage weekend seminar (see Weekend Seminar on Masterson Method website), you may skip the first day and attend the second two days of the 3-day MMES training at a reduced rate.However, if you attended the weekend seminar years ago and/or need a refresher, we recommend that you attend the first day to review The Masterson Method principles and techniques as they apply to EAAT horses.
How much work and time is involved with the fieldwork?
In the fieldwork phase, 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 someone else doing 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. The amount of time required to complete fieldwork and the final exam is a minimum of two months; students must complete their fieldwork one year.
What is the cost of training?
The fee for training is $595 and for fieldwork certification is an additional $100. Registration for training and fieldwork are separate (once you’ve successfully completed training, you will be able to register for and access fieldwork documents).
If you’ve already attended the Beyond Horse Massage Weekend Seminar and feel experienced in doing The Masterson Method on EAAT horses, you may opt to attend only days 2 and 3 of training (day 1 is introducing students to The Masterson Method and select techniques) for a reduced cost of $395. We recommend, however, that you consider attending the entire 3 days. Fieldwork certification is an additional $100.
How come there are no trainings listed?
If you do not see trainings listed on this website, it is because we are looking for EAAT facilities to host a training! Are you interested? See our Host A Training page to learn more about the benefits and requirements of hosting.