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JoAnne Meyer Herrera

Certified Equine Sports Massage Therapist 
Certified Canine Massage Therapist

Healing Touch for Animals Practitioner


JoAnne grew up in West Milford, NJ which is prime horse country.  She has always had a great passion for horses and her earliest memories were of them.  She often jokes that her first word was horse, not momma – although that wasn’t exactly true.  


While growing up in horse country, she took every opportunity to be with the horses that lived in the many neighboring barns, boarding stables and hack barns.  Being the middle of 5 children, riding lessons were not in the family budget.  As she entered her teens and started earning her own money, JoAnne rode as often as she could at the local hack barn.  There are many fond memories of her favorites.  Shortly after JoAnne turned 18, she finally bought one of those favorites – Myriah.  Myriah was a beautiful, Morgan-cross mare, who as her name suggests – taught JoAnne many things about horses and life in general.  Myriah was just the beginning and soon Christie was born.  Little Bear, a nice sized, Welsh type pony came soon after so that her little sister, Frances would have a horse of her own and a nice safe ride.  After these horses lived to a ripe old age, Royal Attraction (Roy), an Arab gelding and Dakota, a stock type gelding were added to the barn.  JoAnne continues to learn everything she can about these animals and is committed to bettering the lives of horses in general. 


When JoAnne adopted Roy to be a companion for the very aged Myriah, she was told that he had a ‘club’ foot.  She researched everything she could find about this condition and found a recurring theme – these horses benefit greatly from massage therapy.  She researched and found that massage therapy would benefit most horses and decided to learn what she could.  After speaking with Colleen McDonald of ‘Equine Kneads, llc’, JoAnne was on her way to another profession and Rubbing Elbows was born.  Also, natural hoof-trimming techniques have been used on Roy to work with what he was given.  Chris Knispel and Kris Smalley of ‘No Horsing Around, llc’ have worked wonders with his condition. 

JoAnne also has a love for dogs and there has rarely been a time in her life without a canine companion. Massage therapy is equally beneficial to canine clientel and canine certification was added in 2009.  

Continuing education is important to JoAnne and Healing Touch for Animals was added along with Equine Acupressure early in 2010.  As part of the certification requirements for Healing Touch for Animals, Healing Touch Level 1 (for humans) will be completed in 2011.  Training opportunities will continually be pursued.  

Shortly after graduating high school, JoAnne enlisted in the Coast Guard Reserve and recently retired as a Chief Petty Officer with 33 years of service.  Here she learned another specialty - working with rope.  JoAnne handcrafts all of her rope products:  lead lines, longe lines, reins, leashes from the finest marine grade double braid and cotton 3-strand.  She uses the splicing techniques she learned from spending many hours in the boat house while in the Coast Guard.

JoAnne is a graduate of Thomas Edison College and has worked for a major telecom-munications company for over 23 years.

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