Advanced 5-Day Course


Horses in your care will benefit further by your participation in the Advanced 5-Day Course. You will become more adept at The Masterson Method techniques that will help relieve your horse’s stress and build stronger human-horse relationships. For those interested in becoming a Masterson Method Certified Practitioner, (MMCP) it is the next required step.

The Advanced 5-Day Course in equine bodywork is an advanced, practical course that is open to anyone with experience handling horses and a basic knowledge of equine anatomy, who is interested in improving relationship, communication and performance in horses. It is also the primary course for the Certification Program.

It consists of five days of practical training. This is spent almost entirely working on horses. You will learn where to look, what to look for, and how to release and clear issues that most affect performance.

During this course you will perfect your understanding of the principles of release of tension in the horse, your ability to recognize and use responses of the horse to your touch to get that release, and your ability to enable the horse to participate in the process of releasing tension.

You will also learn evaluation techniques that will help you identify bio-mechanical patterns in the horse associated with possible primary Issues, and resulting secondary Issues.

Course size is limited to ensure one-on-one instruction.

We are accredited by the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork Organization (NCBTMB) for Continuing Education Credits.

This course attracts horse-people for a variety of reasons:


WHAT YOU'LL LEARN: Course Details

Advanced 5-Day course schedule for each day is 9am – 5pm. Please plan on arriving 15 minutes before the course begins.

Course Prerequisites:

You must have taken the Weekend Seminar-Workshop before attending the Advanced 5-Day Course.

We encourage you to space out the time between the Weekend Seminar-Workshop and the Advanced 5-Day Course. This will enable you to go home and “soak in” what you have learned. That said, we understand that life gets in the way so you are welcome to come to a weekend and stay for the Advanced 5-day if both courses are contiguous.

It is a prerequisite to complete the Beyond Horse Massage Online Home Study Course prior to attending the Advanced 5-Day.  Jim has found that those who have completed the course prior to the Advanced 5-Day come better prepared.

The Advanced 5-Day Course also requires a certain level of physical fitness. You must be in good physical shape to meet the demands of these five days. You will be working with horses every day and often on your feet for the whole day. To give you an idea of the physical requirements needed to successfully complete the course, what would be required would be roughly equivalent to one of the following:

  • Forty minutes of aerobic activity without the need to sit down
  • Thirty minutes of Pilates with hand weights or bands
  • One hour of serious riding (not a gentle hack out)

You must have enough experience with horses that you are able to safely and comfortably perform the techniques taught in the course. In addition to working safely, you should be able to:

  • work in an enclosed space such as a stall, with an unfamiliar horse
  • pick up and handle the fore and hind feet and legs of an unfamiliar horse
  • hold up a leg long enough to examine the foot and leg

Course Outline

Time Breakdown: Approximately 15 to 20% will be spent on lecture, including:

  1. The anatomy of key junctions of the body that most affect performance; the poll/atlas/axis, the neck/shoulders/withers junction, and the sacroiliac/sacro-lumbar junction and major muscles associated with that junction.
  2. The principles and mechanics of release in the muscles and connective tissues of the horse, different levels of pressure, recognizing and using the responses of the horse to touch, and how our use of pressure, movement and position causes a muscle or junction to release.
  3. Initial and final evaluations, primary issues vs. secondary issues, and pain vs. restriction in the body.

Approximately 80 to 85% will be spent practicing and perfecting techniques and advanced techniques on multiple horses with a range of issues.

  • Initial Evaluation
  • Advanced techniques (take out Nervous reflex, and adoptive response)
  • By-passing the survival response
  • Nervous reflex, and adoptive response
  • Working on different body types
  • Manipulation and Release
  • Important: Head Shy Horses
  • Pain and behavior
  • Pain vs. restriction
  • Relationship of primary issues to secondary issues
  • Feet and pain in the body
  • Touchy issues like saddle fit and pain in the body
  • Other joints and junctions in which restrictions are commonly found
  • Follow ups
  • Working with owners, trainers and other equine professionals.
  • Final Evaluation – Putting it all together

Choose Your Advanced 5-Day Course

Join us at an Advanced 5-Day Course to learn advanced Masterson techniques as well as Jim’s evaluation process.

Please see our COVID-19 procedures for students.  For Canada, the United States and Poland courses only, please read the COVID-19 Waiver which you will be asked to sign at your course. For more specific details on your selected course regarding COVID-19, please click on the instructor’s name for their contact information.


July 13-17 Watsonville, CA with Sandy Vreeburg

July 20-24 Coatesville, IN with Coralie Hughes

July 20-24 Ocala, FL with Mary Last

September 21-25 Cedarburg, WI with Becky Tenges

October 5-9 Watsonville, CA with Sandy Vreeburg

October 12-16 Coatesville, IN with Coralie Hughes

November 2-6 Tucson, AZ with Vanessa Helvey

November 9-13  Georgetown, TX with Becky Tenges


September 7-11 Calgary, AB with Lori Hoppe

September 21-25 Cobourg, ON with Lori Hoppe

September 28 – October 2 Shaunavon, SK with Mark Fletcher

October 12-16 Rosedale, BC with Mark Fletcher

May 10-14, 2021  Cobourg, ON with Lori Hoppe

Europe & UK

September 2-6 Mühleim an der Ruhr, DE taught in German with Walter Saxe
*Note this is a Wednesday to Sunday course.

October 12-16  Oxfordshire, UK with Jim Masterson

October 19-23  Salisbury, UK with Jim Masterson

November 25-29 Dillenburg, DE taught in German with Walter Saxe
*Note this is a Wednesday to Sunday course.

Required and Suggested Reading and Viewing for the Advanced 5-Day Course



There are numerous books on equine massage and bodywork. Any background reading on position release, myofascial release, neuromuscular, craniosacral, acupressure, bio-dynamics and muscles and movement will help. Below are some suggestions:

Books are available on our online store:

  • Whole Horse DVD series, Jim Masterson (5 DVD Series)
  • The Horse Structure and Movement, by R.H. Smythe and P.C. Goody (Good structure, joint and ligament drawings)
  • Horse Anatomy: A Pictorial Approach to Equine Structure, by Peter Goody.
  • Horse Anatomy: Equine 3-D, app for iPhone and iPads (Strongly recommended for iPhone and iPad users)

We are accredited and approved through the following organizations:

National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork Organization (NCBTMB) for Continuing Education Credits (CEC): Weekend Seminar-Workshop, 14 CEC; Home Study Course, 12 CE; Advanced 5-Day, 32 CEC; Field Work Course, 50 CEC; Certification Completion Course, 32 CEC.

National Board of Certification For Animal Acupressure and Massage  Approved for 14 hours CE credit, 10 hours hands-on for the Weekend Seminar-Workshop

Equine Therapies Association of Australia  Approved Training Provider