by Jenny Rukavina
Horses are said to be master teachers and I see proof of that just about every day around here! This April Equine Level 2 massage course was the first of the new season at this Littleton facility, and the horses were very opinionated about what they wanted us to learn during the week we worked with them. Part of what I love about teaching these courses is that students come from all walks of life, are all ages, and come from all over the world, literally. Last week we had a young student from Minnesota, and then some lovely women looking to make a new career of equine massage from Colorado and California. With their varied geographical locations, their horse experience varied as well. The horses wanted them to learn about handling and horsemanship in addition to honing their massage skills and learning the RMSAAM Equine Sports Massage sequence. And, with the small group that we had, there were lots of students teaching students, horses teaching students, and even horses and students teaching me, the teacher! I try to always be open-minded and learn something from each of my students. It was a lovely thing to watch this all come together, and by day four, the students’ confidence had bloomed along with their new horse-handling skills, which I teach to be all about boundaries… such an important concept for a body-worker to grasp! All three students learned and grew so much over the five days at the Littleton campus; I was proud to send them off into the world to work on their case- studies and progress towards their Equine Level 2 certifications.
About Jenny Rukavina: Formerly a high school biology teacher, she now finds herself immersed in the horse business after founding Acadia Equine Rehabilitation just south of Denver. AER was an idea based on Jenny’s personal experience bringing her mare, Acadia, back to work as a dressage horse after sustaining a severe stifle injury that required surgery and months of lay-up and rehabilitation. Becoming a certified equine and canine massage practitioner fit into the mission of her business, and until recently she said one of the only things missing in her life was teaching… so she now balances her time between her equine rehab clients, teaching equine and canine massage classes for RMSAAM, as well as a limited number of equine and canine massage clients.
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