I have now been working with horses for over five years. The time has flown. Since my very first equine holistic session back in 2016, in a windy yard in Kent with the largest horse I had ever met in my life, I knew that this was the path I should follow. My intuition was spot on. Five years on, the journey becomes ever more extraordinary…

Scientific training
Born in Glasgow, Scotland, in 1963, I was initially trained in science, receiving a First in Botany from the University of Durham in 1985. I then enrolled for my PhD in Professor Mike Ashburner’s lab in Genetics in Cambridge. I was awarded my PhD for research on the evolution of fruit flies (Drosophila). My first Post-doc was in the lab of Dr Roger Keynes, in Anatomy, Cambridge, and then I joined the group of Professor Nicole Le Douarin at the CNRS, in Nogent-sur-Marne where I worked until 1994.   

I discovered Reiki in 2011, having been interested in the oriental energy arts for over 20 years, learning the short form of Tai-Chi in my 20s, then practicing Aikido, studying Qi-Gong in Paris over a period of five years. I received my first three Reiki attunements and degrees between 2011 and 2012 with Reiki France (Gilles and Martine Tikka). In 2016, I completed my Reiki training to become a Reiki Master Teacher with Chrissie Rhyman in Kent. In 2020 I joined William Lee Rand’s first online Karuna Reiki Master’s class, and received my Karuna Reiki Masters in September 2020, shortly before the third Healing Circle

Further holistic training
I continued my holistic training with the six modules of the ASK Kinesiology Foundation course taught by Rosie Dowbekin (Dip. ASK) (Frome, UK). I was so amazed by what I learned with Rosie that immediately joined the Bristol School of Advanced Kinesiology to study for my Kinesiology Diploma, enjoying an amazing year of training with Julie Mawji (Dip. ASK). I obtained my Diploma in July 2016.

Continuing Professional Development (CPD)
I continue my training in various holistic disciplines, training with Alison Astill-Smith (Metabolics, Wiltshire, UK) in working with Leaky Gut, & Exploring the keto diet for control of weight loss and diabetes. I studied the use of the powerful Energy Mismatch technique with Jane Thurnell-Read (Work Life Potential, Devon, UK). I studied Retained Primary Reflexes training with Linda Belcher, in 2018. Karuna Reiki Master training with International Centre for Reiki Training (2020). In 2020, I took Chris Astill-Smith’s Hormones and Menopause online class.

Working with horses
From my first holistic session with a horse, I knew this is what I wanted to do. Whilst the journey has been quite something, I have never doubted that initial intuition that this is where I should be. Coming from a scientific rather than an equestrian background, this initially surprised me, but my natural love for horses and the joy I feel in their presence tells me this is exactly what I am supposed to be doing, and the work unfolds, season by season. 

In 2021, my CPD work became distinctly equine and I took Gillian Higgins’ four online courses, The Principles of Equine Movement; Riding from the Anatomical perspective; Dressage dissected, Jumping from an Anatomical Approach, Muscular Misconceptions – the anatomy of the horse’s back muscles, and most recently, Equine Nutrition – a one day workshop, in February 2o22. Later in the year (May 2022), I will be joining Gillian Higgins at her center near Nottingham, for a two-day workshop on the Assessment of Posture and Movement in Horses. This promises to be exceptionally interesting and is part of my own program of study to deepen my equine knowledge and bring more value to my clients.

A word of thanks
I end with a word of thanks to my wonderful clients who have introduced me to their equally wonderful horses. Both have allowed me to do the work, and help them. This is the most magnificent adventure, and I look forward to spending the rest of my days helping horses from near and from far. I can’t think of a more wonderful occupation. Clearly, I have at last found my calling. And for that, I am deeply grateful. 


Photo credit – a self-portrait with Liam
A moment of tenderness with this beautiful and much-loved friend.
Thank you, Spirit Nutkin, and your herd, for such beautiful times together.

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