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Equine Massage
ES 440

Instructor: Betty Lindquist



This required course teaches more than just the techniques for massaging the superficial muscles of the horse.  It is designed to provide students with the knowledge to see the "whole horse"-movement and muscular development, injuries allied to the work performed, outside factors that affect comfort, as well as massage techniques and the actual massage.

          A complete approach to equine massage, the course details the muscular/skeletal system, correct biomechanics, variations and abnormalities, muscle stresses and injuries.  Students learn to evaluate the horse, locating problems and formulating a plan for successful massage.  There is a lesson on simple exercises to re-program the horse's movement patterns to loosen muscular restrictions and alleviate soreness.

         In addition to quizzes, students will have to write reports for lesson assignments and submit videos that show their proficiency in massage techniques and practice.  Completion of this course is all that is required by most states to allow the practice of equine massage as a profession.  However, laws are constantly under review and you should check with your state to determine requirements.

         Once this online course is satisfactorily completed, students may apply for "Massage Therapist Certification" from Lindquist/Horses in Motion.  The "certification test out" will be done in several phases.  Students will submit videos showing them at work.  The student is not required to travel.  Cost of the "Massage Therapist Certification" test out is $500; arrangements must be made with instructor Betty Lindquist. This "extra" certification is not required to earn Breyer State University credits.

         Lesson 1:  Presents an introduction to equine massage, explaining various types of massage, benefits and contraindications.

         Lesson 2:  A presentation of equine anatomy and terminology; how the horse skeleton compares to the human skeleton and how the muscles move bones to create movement.

         Lesson 3:  Areas of stress associated with various riding disciplines and to how to recognize signs and signals of discomfort from external factors.

         Lesson 4:  Reading the body of the horse when standing still and when in movement; establishing a history and determining how and when massage will be beneficial.

          Lesson 5:  Focus is on saddle fit, feet, teeth and over training and the muscle injury progression associated with each.

         Lesson 6:  Present the various "massage techniques" required to accommodate the various needs of the individual horse.

         Lesson 7:  Presents the requirements and techniques for the full body massage with full descriptions and graphic directions.

         Lesson 8: Presents movement exercises from the ground and under saddle as an adjunct to the use of equine massage.



       There is one required textbook for this course:
            Horse Anatomy Coloring Atlas, Robert A. Kainer 

       There are two suggested textbooks:
            The Horse Anatomy Workbook, Maggie Raynor
            Illustrated Essentials of Musculoskeletal Anatomy, Kay W. Sieg and Sandra P. Adams (Human anatomy text book)

       You can order the above books through the College Book Store (Amazon):

        Other suggested books/DVD are:
             The Anatomy of the Horse: Robert F. Way and Donald G. Lee, Breakthrough Publication
             The Visible Horse, DVD
             An Atlas of Animal Anatomy for Artists: W. Ellenberger, H Dittrich & H Baum, Dover Publications Inc., New York, N.Y.
             Cyclopedia Anatomicae: Gyorgy Feher, Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers, New York, N.Y.

        There is no completion deadline for the course.  The student works at his or her own pace.  The student will not be "locked-out". 

         The grading scale for this course is as follows:
                 90-100%  =    A
                 80-89%    =    B
                 70-79%    =    C
                 Below 70%     Fail

        You are strongly encouraged to communicate via email with the instructor. Ms. Lindquist is available as an instructor and mentor to assist you in meeting your goals for this course.  If at any time during this course you change your email address, please be sure to notify the instructor and office right away.
        Do not use text messaging shorthand or acronyms when communicating with the instructor.
        Please include full name and address in all correspondence.  

        Many lessons require written assignments or essays.  They should be submitted as an attachment to an email using Word or a similar word processing software.
        Please be sure to include full name and email address on all documents - not just in the email message. 
        Proper grammar and spelling will be graded.
        Do not use text messaging shorthand or acronyms - this is college level work.

        Access to a horse is required.
        The ability to make and submit videos of you demonstrating the exercises in the lessons is required.
        All assignments and quizzes must be completed.


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