Equine Massage & Bodywork
About the Owner
Maribeth Mills is the owner of Upping Stone and a certified equine massage therapist. Upon obtaining her undergraduate and graduate degrees from Mary Washington University and the University of Virginia respectively, she spent 10 years in the urban planning and historic preservation fields. However, the birth of her two sons gave her a new perspective on life and the courage to fulfill her dream of working with horses.
Maribeth lives in Roanoke, Virginia with her husband, two sons, and five furry children. When she’s not at the barn, Maribeth enjoys traveling with her husband, building Lego’s with her sons, and tackling home improvement projects.
Photo: Maribeth and Lass
Massage & Bodywork Training
Upon deciding on her future path as an equine massage therapist, Maribeth immersed herself in the study of equine anatomy and biomechanics coupled with hands-on training in advanced massage and bodywork techniques. Her commitment to seeking high-quality training has allowed her to learn beside stand-outs in the massage and bodywork fields including equine sports massage pioneer Mary Schreiber whose work has been featured in publications such as Practical Horseman and EQUUS, as well as Masterson Method Certified Practitioner Marie Riley of 16 Hands LLC Integrated Bodywork whose clients include FEI level competitors.
Photo: Maribeth & Mary Schreiber
Maribeth has over 30 years of experience in the equine industry through horse ownership; training and riding competitively in hunter/jumpers; working as an exercise rider/driver for hunter/jumpers, foxhunters, and harness racers; and managing the daily operations of boarding/training stables. Through the encouragement of her aunt, former coach of the William & Mary Equestrian Club, Maribeth began taking lessons at the age of five. In the years that followed, she took advantage of every opportunity to grow as a well-rounded equestrian. In the late 90’s and early 2000’s, Maribeth found her niche in the jumper ring earning Central Virginia Show Jumping Association’s High Point Horse/Rider as well as numerous wins at USEF 2 Star shows. After college, Maribeth decided to slow things down and return to the hunter ring. She purchased a three-year old chestnut Thoroughbred mare named Lass. Over a decade later they are still together, although Lass prefers giving Maribeth’s sons lead-line lessons over going to shows!
Photo: Maribeth with Jumpin' Jack Flash
Why Upping Stone?
An upping stone is the historic version of today's mounting block. Still present in many historic streetscapes, this low stone platform was set near the entrance to a building or along the street to facilitate mounting a horse. As a business name, it pays homage to Maribeth’s past career in historic preservation as well as symbolizing the preserving nature of equine massage and bodywork – just as today's mounting block preserves the muscular and structural integrity of a horse’s back.
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Maribeth B. Mills d/b/a Upping Stone Equine Massage & Bodywork is fully licensed and insured.