MEEBW, President Equinology ® Inc
Debranne Pattillo
Debranne sees equine anatomy with the eyes of both a body worker and an artist. Her teaching is infused with her basic delight in both the anatomical precision that excellent bodywork requires and the dynamic variation that teaching anatomy on (mostly living, nibbling, opinionated) horses often presents! Her knack for seeing the bones and muscles with an artist’s eye and her unique way of taking the body apart, from the skin down to the bones, and putting it back together again — as a colored drawing, as an “air massage,” or as a painting done in chalk on a live horse — is a perspective that fuels her work as a practitioner of equine body work and sports massage and makes her a much sought-after teacher. Her “Painted Horse,” which has served as the backbone for presenting equine anatomy since Equinology started, was showcased in United Kingdom’s BBC television program “Country File” in 2001. Debranne’s first exposure to hands-on work with horses came through her then Sonoma County-based trainer, Gail Hunt, who took her to one of Linda Tellington-Jones clinic. This led to one of those “light bulb” moments which Debranne has in turn provided for so many of her own students. Debranne is the first to say that all of the instructors who teach for Equinology have been extremely influential to her, but she is also quick to acknowledge Dr. Kerry Ridgway, DVM (instructor and practitioner extraordinaire in acupuncture, animal manipulation and saddle fit) and the late Australian, Dr. Des Greaves (licensed acupuncturist, homeopath, osteopath, and chiropractor) as two of her most significant mentors, along with a cranky 16-year old Thoroughbred mare named Ronamead. Before dedicating herself to developing Equinology’s curriculum and faculty and teaching, Debranne owned and operated a small sport horse lay-up and boarding facility for six years. It was during this time that she discovered the benefits of equine sports massage for the rehabilitation and preventative care of these equine athletes. In 1993, she sold the ranch to enable her to work on an established monthly clientele of various disciplines, which included: dressage, hunters, jumpers, endurance, cutting, pleasure, as well as the geriatric retiree. Since 1994, she has been the lead instructor for more than 90 equine sports massage and anatomy courses to more than 1,000 course participants in the US, Canada, UK, South Africa, New Zealand and Canada. She holds the Equinology® Master Equine Body Worker Certification, a certification which takes participants over 1600 hours of coursework to complete. She is the author and facilitator of the unique Equinology® Equine Body Worker Certification Course (equine sports massage, stretching and specialized techniques), which is the signature course for Equinology. This course serves as the professional qualification in the BSc in Equine Sports Therapy presented by Writtle Agricultural College and University of Essex, United Kingdom. Debranne is also the co-founder and past Chair of the United States division of the International Equine Body Worker Association (IEBWA); a leading international association that aims to support and foster equine body work practices and ethics. She is currently the Division Head of the IEBWA for USA, Australia and New Zealand. Debranne is a regularly invited lecturer and guest speaker for demonstrations and lectures in anatomy, stretching and massage at colleges, universities, private educational institution and various equestrian facilities and venues. She has been working for several years on a comprehensive anatomy and sports massage textbook scheduled for publication in 2015 with Dr. Peter Flood and medical illustrator Sue Simon that includes major contributions from Dr. Kerry Ridgway, Dr. Barb Crabbe, Kalyani Premkumar and Dr. Joanna Robson. Celia Strain, art director of Equus Magazine, Laurie O\\'Keefe and Catherine Twomey all highly sought after medical illustrator support this book\\'s text with their fresh illustrations.