Upon encountering TT.E.A.M. I knew only that the acronym stood for “Tellington Touch Equine Awareness Method”. I knew something of Linda Tellington-Jones’ Pacific Coast Equestrian Research Farm of years past and also had her book which was a standard text on endurance and competitive trail riding. Watching horses being TTEAMed, I saw only a myriad of strange, fussy, insignificant looking activities. I did not relate too well to the explanations offered. Then I noticed I was extremely drowsy and slightly hungry. (The stuff increases even watchers’ body awareness!) Thankfully I persisted past this typical beginning.
Having worked with horses all my life my mind was only semi open at best but I have managed to expand it enough to see the value and understand some of the concepts of TTEAM. For me, it has become a part of what we veterinarians call our “therapeutic armamentarium” and colors just about my every approach to animals. Even though I use TTEAM I still know less about it than I do know about it. Nonetheless, I will now endeavor to explain a little of what TTEAM and TTouch are about as I understand them. This is done
First, TTEAM starts with the premise that failure of human animal interaction is caused by such factors as lack of understanding, fear or pain, with the activation of habitual or instinctive responses. Then it uses techniques to gently break through the automatic reaction patterns these factors usually evoke. The first technique is body work, a collection of specific “touches” Linda had developed. These are collectively called the TTouch. These are not massage, acupressure, nor invasive. Included in body work are various gentle manipulation of body parts. The second technique is ground work which involves guiding the animal through movement exercises in non habitual ways. A third technique for horses is “riding with awareness” which carry the work through under saddle. Linda’s experience and creativity have led to modifications and applications appropriate to many species and countless situations.
The techniques used are designed to create a calm, attentive, focused state of consciousness. Then through touch, manipulation and guiding the animal through non habitual activities they bring feelings, habitual responses and bodily states of awareness. In this state
If you think the foregoing sounds as if I am explaining something I do not understand, you are more than a little right. If, like me, you are a conservative horseman and scientifically trained citizen of the 20th century, you may be skeptical. I was, and blasphemously so. As my exposure to TTEAM increased, several surprising but inescapable observations evolved.
As a veterinarian I am better grounded in the physical and biological sciences than in the behavioral ones. I reject the dichotomy implied by the labels “holistic” and “nonholistic” medicine as though these were rival clubs to arbitrarily choose. Obviously the appropriate
It should go without saying that veterinarians who employ alternative/complementary medicine modalities such as acupuncture and chiropractic can find that TTEAM is synergistic with their other modalities. Because Linda’s methods are right brained, intuitive
The truth is that as Linda has synthesized eclectically and added creative leaps of her own, she has evaluated her methods and results critically and sought as much objective outside validation as possible. The work rests on a base extrapolated from human mind/body workers, notably Moshe Feldenkrais. Data on electroencephalographic changes has been obtained. The anecdotal evidence is massive, and while some of it may be equivocal because of misinterpretations by over-enthusiastic TTEAM users, a large body remains
For me the most telling proof of TTEAM’s efficacy is personal. Marnie Reeder, who usually assists me while treating horses, is a TTEAM Practitioner. My drug bill for chemical restraint agents is negligible and I haven’t used my twitch in so long I have forgotten where I left
Dr. Tom Beckett has been practicing veterinary medicine since 1960, and owns Camino Viejo Animal Clinic in Austin, Texas. His assistant, Marnie Reeder is a TTEAM Practitioner who has been a professional in the horse business for many years. Marnie organized
the syndicate who purchased the 1984 Olympic dressage horse Romantico, ridden by Robert Dover. Dr. Beckett was Romantico’s veterinarian.
Veterinary Conferences And Veterinary Schools Where Tteam And Ttouch Has Been Presented By Linda Tellington-jones - by
Bibliography Of Veterinary Books With Reference To Tteam And Tellington Ttouch - by
Biography Of Linda Tellington-jones - by
Case Histories - by Various
Tellington Touch Every Animal Method In The Vet Practice - by Daniela Zurr, DVM – Germany
Tteam And Veterinary Medicine In Vienna, Austria - by Martina Simmerer, DVM – Austria , 1992-02-10
A Peaceful Option - by Sandra Vahsholtz DVM , 1997-08-10
How A Danish Veterinarian Applies Tteam To Horses - by Rikke Schultz, DVM , 1998-04-10
A Veterinarian Defines Tteam™ - by Tom Beckett, DVM and Marnie Reeder , 2001-05-18
A Veterinarian Encounters Tteam - by Tom Beckett, DVM , 2001-05-18
Use Of Tteam In A Veterinary Practice: An Overview - by Tom Beckett, DVM & Margaret Reeder, BS , 2001-05-19