The courses in the United Kingdom are recognised by the McTimoney Chiropractic Association and all clinics count towards compulsory annual CPD education. The United Kingdom programme is undergoing college/university accreditation, which should be finalized in 2004 latest. In the United States, the programme is recognised by the IMA (International Massage Association) and by the university programme of the USDF (United States Dressage Federation).In South Africa, our Equine Progressive Anatomy Course is recognised by the South African Veterinary Council for CPD for Veterinarians and we have submitted other courses for accreditation.
Who are the teachers on your programme?
Our clinicians are all renowned specialists in their respective fields, so you will receive first-hand information based on the latest research in the field of equine complementary healthcare science. They come mostly from the United States and travel around the world to teach our classes, not only in the USA, but also in Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, Brazil and South Africa. So, you will have the same clinician wherever you decide to take the particular course! You can find full clinician biographies on the website, on the Instructor Bios page.
Do veterinarians recognise the qualifications?
By law, you can only work on a horse with veterinary permission and/or referral. It is up to the individual Body Worker to liase with the veterinarian. We emphasise that we do not diagnose nor treat and where any illness or injury is suspected the horse is immediately referred to the owning veterinarian. Around the world many veterinarians attend our classes, including the Equine Sports Massage clinics.
Can I start my own practice and build a new career once I have taken the Foundation Equine Sports Massage course, and once I am qualified as an Equine Body Worker?
You will receive your Equine Body Worker certification upon successful completion of the Equine Sports Massage Foundation certification course and the required externship. If you can work together with another professional in your area, for example, a chiropractor, osteopath or physiotherapist you could have a jump-start to a solid client base, this is equally so if you can work together with a veterinarian in your area.
The time to build up your client base will depend on your geographical location, size of the equine population in that area and other therapists already working in the area. Once you are qualified, it is a good idea to introduce yourself and your work to fellow professionals in the area. In class we spend a fair amount of time going through marketing tips and ideas to help you set up a successful practice!
How much can I expect to charge for consultations?
Again, this is largely dependent on your geographical location. We generally suggest a fee similar to that charged by fellow professionals in your area.
You can expect to charge slightly higher fees as your levels of qualifications increase, going from EBW to EBW Level II and onto AEBW and SEBW qualifications.
How long will it take me to get the Master Equine Body Worker (MEBW) qualification?
We usually suggest a timescale of 12 to 18 months, depending on how much time you can dedicate to the courses. The courses are all offered in modular form, which means that you can take them in any order, and there is no time restriction on how long you take before testing for a higher level of certification. Most of our students are either working professionals or in full-time employment with a view to changing career, so the option of modular study combines well with employment. Full details of the course prerequisites can be found on the Course Details page.
Why do the courses cost so much?
People who have not attended any of the courses will comment that they are expensive. They may appear to cost a lot of money upfront, but once you have attended a course, you will appreciate the value that you receive. All of our lecturers are very experienced practitioners in their respective fields and have spent a large amount of time and money gaining skills and experience which they will be passing on to you. The running of each course requires a teaching room, audiovisual equipment, and access to horses for practical purposes, handlers for the horses, teaching material and hand outs. Many of the courses supply information rich manuals. Most of our lecturers are from overseas; particularly USA and flights, local travel and accommodation have to be provided by EquiworkSA. We are at the mercy of the fluctuations of the rate of exchange and can sometimes find that our courses cost 10 or 20% more than expected to run. Each course is followed by an externship which needs to be evaluated and feedback given to the student. Quite often a student will have to submit more than once in order to meet the high standards required to gain a Certificate of Attendance or Certification Certificate. This means being evaluated twice. Certificates need to be processed and posted, often to all corners of the world.
Courses can only run if there are sufficient students to cover the costs of running the course, which are high. Sometimes we run the courses at a loss, or only just at breakeven, so that we can bring the courses to you in South Africa. These are international standard courses and travelling to one of the other countries where they are offered such as UK, USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand or Brazil will cost you a whole lot more. We are committed to bringing top quality courses to South Africans and offering a high standard of education to those people wanting to train in the field of equine and canine complementary health care. We can only do this on an ongoing basis if it is sustainable. For every course that runs, there is another course that has had to be postponed or cancelled because of insufficient numbers or other circumstances out of our control. When this happens, EquiworkSA loses money and countless hours of time and effort put into answering enquiries, responding to registrations, informing people of the postponement or cancellation etc. Before any courses even begin to run, EquiworkSA needs to cover the costs of internet access, website management, telephone bills, advertising, stationery, time spent on enquiries and inviting lecturers and much more. EquiworkSA is more than the courses we offer. We receive many emails every day asking for advice regarding various options of study available, not just our own courses and we endeavor to answer these enquiries with as much detail as possible. EquiworkSA is about Education. In the USA, they are able to offer discounts for registering for more than one course and other incentive schemes. Once we confidently reach sufficient numbers for our courses on a regular basis, we will also be able to offer these kinds of discounts.
Keeping the courses affordable and available and to grow the number of courses available to the South African student is dependant on the support of the students.
Is financial assistance available?
If you plan to run through a number of courses to test for a higher level of certification and agree to sign up for all the required classes, we may spread the payments over a pre-determined length of time.
Is there a governing body or association for qualified Equine Body Workers?
The International Equine Body Worker Association (IEBWA) is the centralised regulatory and supporting body for all student and qualified Body Workers.
Members receive full listing on the IEBWA page. The Association will represent its members at trade functions, in professional communications and similar. The IEBWA has branches in the USA, Canada and the United Kingdom as well as Brazil, South Africa and Australia.