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EQ900: Anatomy Discovery Workshop

Date: July 17th-23rd, 2024 Woodbine, Maryland
Cost: $1795
Duration: 7 days


*This course has been approved for 56 hours of continuing education credit in jurisdictions that recognize RACE approval.

Learning equine anatomy should be fun and interactive. It should not entail memorizing! After this class, when someone asks about a muscle, you will actively recall building it on the Equiken® model in clay. You will remember where and how you felt it on the horse (or located for deeper muscles). Memorization is just not the way most brains work! Experience (build, associate, palpate), store (your brain makes notes) and then recall – that’s the ticket. This course utilizes the brilliant system developed by Jon Zahourek, founder of ANATOMY IN CLAY® Learning Systems.

We have a blast at this course! Some participants may consider it an art class, but artistic skills are not necessary. So much information is shared among the participants, loads of questions are explored, light bulbs are constantly going on and huge smiles of comprehension continue throughout the duration of the workshop.

The difference between the average equine bodyworker and a great one is accuracy. Anyone in the equine healthcare profession – whether you use your hands, tools or machines – will find this is a great opportunity to expand and enhance skills. This course is also useful for the trainer or rider because analytical skills are honed after understanding the structure of the horse. This knowledge improves your riding and teaching skills.

This seven-day course is taught in increments in a study group format with a hands-on approach. It is run in 3 days on, one day off for self-study and finishes with another 3 days on. Using bones, models, visuals, books, hand-outs, reference material and live horses, Debranne Pattillo, MEEBW will lead and direct the group. Students will work in teams of two, building the muscles on the Equiken® models at a comfortable pace, researching each muscle as the building progresses. Students become very familiar with various published books, publications and internet resources during the course, thus enabling them to better research anatomy. Students will have a chance to ensure they have understood the information by completing a self-assessment before the beginning of each class. Students are responsible for attending all six days of class in the classroom and are expected to spend the off day reviewing material for at least 8 hours.

This is not like those anatomy classes you’ve attended with a dry lecturer reciting from a book. Debranne’s wit and style make this a fun course. She uses various approaches that leave you with the increased knowledge to continue on in your own studies. Past students rave about this course and return year after year.

Please note that registration for this class closes 30 days prior to the course start date to ensure the appropriate number of models are ordered.

*This class runs from 8:00am-5:30pm daily with 30 minutes for lunch and an additional 3 hours of evening studies.  Day 4 is spent out-of-class for independent study.

The Equiken® models used for the course were created by Jon Zahourek of Anatomy in Clay® Learning Systems. Anatomy in Clay offers several courses at their Colorado, USA base. Have a look at for additional courses on equine, canine and human anatomy. Please register directly with them for those courses or write to for dates and costs. The 6-day courses that are taught there are suitable for the required anatomy modules for continued education.

ANATOMY IN CLAY® and EQUIKEN® are registered trademarks of Zahourek Systems, Inc. or affiliates in the US or other countries. Authorization for limited trademark use licensed by Zahourek Systems, Inc., a sole provider of Anatomy in Clay® Learning System. or as otherwise requested by Zahourek.

© Zahourek Systems, Inc. and affiliates. All rights reserved. This material may not be copied, rewritten, broadcasted, or redistributed. Authorization for limited copyright use licensed by Zahourek Systems, Inc., a sole provider of Anatomy in Clay® Learning System. or as otherwise requested by Zahourek.



  • Anatomy Vocabulary
  • Directional Terms
  • Veterinary Terms

Skeletal Structure

  • Form and Function
  • Skeletal  Organization
  • Thoracic and Pelvic Appendicular System
  • Axial Skeletal System
  • Bony Landmark and Surface Anatomy Identification

Muscle Structure

  • Function and Form
  • Intrinsic and Extrinsic Muscles
  • Relationship to Orientation
  • Deep, Middle and Superficial Layer Major Muscles
  • Reciprocal Apparatus
  • Passive Stay Apparatus of the Hind and Forelimb
  • Injuries and Issues Relating to Muscles

Course Practicals:

  • Building Individual Muscles in Clay Using the Equiken® Professional Model
  • Locating and Marking the Bony Landmarks on the Horse
  • Locating, Isolating and Marking the Muscles on the Horse


Students must review the veterinary vocabulary and terms, skeletal anatomy and bony landmarks in the EQ50 Equine Anatomy Precourse Distance Study course prior to attending the EQ900. (This is the precourse used for the Equinology® Equine Body Worker Certification Courses so it is not necessary to redo for those having participated in the EEBW course.)

If you feel you are already well versed in vocabulary and the musculoskeletal system, please contact the office to waive this prerequisite.

* This course is required for the Equinology ® Equine Body Worker Level II certification. A second anatomy course is required for the Equinology ® Master Equine Body Worker certification.

Required Materials

Required Text:
Anatomy of Equine Bodywork: The Equinology Approach
by Debranne Pattillo
$99 if purchased onsite, or can be purchased here

Course Materials (included in tuition):
Rental of Equiken® Model and Clay Supplies
Course Workbook & Handouts

Externship (included in tuition):
Externship Grading (Case Studies and Visual Presentation)

Bring at least one of the following anatomy books to class:
Color Atlas of Veterinary Anatomy: The Horse Volume 2 by Ashdown and Done
Atlas of Equine Anatomy by Chris Pasquini
Clinical Anatomy of the Horse by Clayton and Flood


Debranne Pattillo, MEEBW

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 – is a perspective that fuels her work as a bodywork practitioner 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.

Since 1994, Debranne has been the lead instructor for more than 200 equine sports massage and anatomy courses to more than 2,000 course participants in the US, Canada, UK, South Africa, New Zealand and Canada. She holds the Equinology® Master Equine Body Worker Certification and is the author and facilitator of the unique Equinology® Equine Body Worker Certification Course, 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.


A $300 deposit is required to hold your spot in a course – the remainder of the tuition is due at least 30 days prior to the course start date. The $300 deposit is nonrefundable and nontransferable, and is credited to the total tuition for the course. Confirmation letters, course outlines, required pre-study (if applicable), directions and lodging options will be sent when the $300 deposit has been received.

Register for this class today!

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