My style of sessions, whether the technique is tissue-based or energy-based, takes into account Somatic Awareness. I like this excerpt from Wikipedia:
"Somatic" (Greek "somatikos", soma: “living, aware, bodily person”) means pertaining to the body, experienced and regulated from within. The concept of soma posits that neither body nor mind is separate from the other; both are part of a living process. Many of the approaches in the field of somatics address the body-mind split endemic in Western culture and body-mind integration is a common goal."
Working with a somatic awareness allows for emotional, mental, and spiritual material that is stored within the body to surface, to be seen, heard, witnessed. This allows healing, releasing, and/or integrating. Often, our physical symptoms (crook in the neck, hip pain, digestive issues…) are related to relationships, self identity, and a myriad other internal feelings, beliefs and energies. Somatic bodywork brings healing on all levels. Massage Therapy, Energywork and Craniosacral therapy work on a deeper level than the intellect/ego's desire to understand. Often subtle shifts create positive life altering transformations. This work is based, as is Life, on having an experience.
The main form of Energywork I practice is Reiki. Like acupuncture, Reiki works with the subtle life-force energy, or “qi,” flowing in the body. Instead of focus only on points, Reiki is focused on organ and body systems and chakras. The practitioner’s hands are lightly positioned on or above the client’s body during a treatment, and the Reiki energy flows through them to the client. The amount of energy coming through depends on the client’s system, making Reiki extremely safe and appropriate for every age. Sessions are excellent for nourishing, strengthening and energizing one if depleted, injured, or chronically ill. Sessions effectively smooth and clear excess energy, and move blocked and stagnant energy. If you are feeling heavy, lethargic, ungrounded, stressed, or imbalanced in any way, Reiki is an excellent modality for balancing. It is often deeply relaxing. Other benefits include detoxing, releasing tight tissue, and enhancing the immune response. The energy of our planet and world is accelerating, and many of us are making internal and external changes that align with our truth and our hearts. Reiki is supportive to humanity in this time of recalibration, as we slough off old ways and open and become available to what is true (and new). I also use advanced energywork techniques including visulaizations, affirmations, breath, color and light work.
Craniosacral work is a gentle, non invasive hands-on therapy for adults, children and infants. It began with Dr. William Sutherland, an osteopath, in the 1930’s. The craniosacral system includes the brain, spinal cord, cerebrospinal fluid, the membrane system inside the cranium, and the bones, especially those of the spine, sacrum and cranium. Using a light touch to engage the subtle rhythm of the cerebrospinal fluid, the therapist moves through a series of gentle holds that release restrictions in the craniosacral system. This therapy is used to treat headaches, endocrine imbalances, sinus issues, TMJ dysfunction, to alleviate stress, tension, and the effects of trauma, as well as speed recovery from injuries and chronic orthopedic conditions. It is also a treatment that integrates mind and body, since it works directly with the tissues of the nervous system. It assists you in dropping into deep meditative levels, inducing a relaxed and spacious awareness in the mind and body. Craniosacral work is also a doorway to spirit, the sacred space within, as it activates connection to 'the breath of life.' The pulse of the cerebrospinal fluid is one with the core vibration, 'the breath of life,' and one may feel this during a cranio session. Between mind and spirit is the emotional body, so if imbalances exist or emotions have been repressed, craniosacral therapy creates a doorway for emotional release and healing. When restrictions in joints and tissues (and sometimes held emotional energy) get released, the body begins to “unwind,” and we can experience refreshing authentic movements. Sometimes in a session we enter stillness and serenity, other times the information or movements of unwinding become very dynamic as the depth of this work brings us into past trauma or held emotions so that we get the chance to acknowledge and heal them in the present. In a safe space, one can fearlessly address and gain awareness around what comes up. The treatments can be calm or dynamic as the individual’s unique healing process directs them.
The Tarot is one of the most ancient maps of psychological symbols. These universal symbols serve as a map of consciousness. Through the cards, one can accurately see and understand the places one is working, or needing to work, how one is creating, where potentials, strengths, and fears and blocks lie. The symbols also speak directly to the subconscious, igniting some shifts, solidifying others. It is a fabulous tool of guidance and connection.
Massage therapy is an effective way to reduce stress and release excess tension in body and mind. It increases the parasympathetic nervous system response, the mode when our bodies are in “rest and digest,” not “fight or flight.” Massage relieves chronic muscular pain and discomfort and improves function of the immune and circulatory systems. Some of the techniques I use are listed below:
Swedish Massage is a gentle to medium pressure technique that promotes deep relaxation and flushing and warming of the tissues of the body. This is the yummy relaxing massage. Primarily used for improving circulation, over-all stress relief, and full body health maintenance. Swedish Massage focuses on rhythmically kneading, wringing, and gliding across the body with oil to soften and gently open tissues, releasing toxins and superficial tension, and calming the nervous system. Swedish massage enhances the immune system function, improves circulation of blood and lymph, clears and smooths energy, and leaves you feeling both energized and deeply relaxed.
Hot Stone Therapy
Warm, smooth basalt stones bring the elements of nurturing heat and grounding earth energy to a session. Using stones that I hand harvested myself from the coast of Maine, the warmth can be applied as static heat to certain areas of the body, as well as held in my hands during massage strokes. The soothing, penetrating heat calms the nervous system and deeply relaxes muscles, body and mind. The heat also hydrates the tissue, making it more pliable and receptive to energy and deep tissue work.
Myofascial/ Deep Tissue Massage
Used for pain relief, shifting postural and muscular holding patterns in the body, as well as contacting deep and specific structures. Myofascial /Deept tissue Massage is targeted at lengthening, spreading, and separating not only muscle tissue, but also the connective tissue, fascia, that surrounds and connects all muscles in the body. As fascia warms and becomes fluid, the body structure finds balance, resulting in an increase in ease and range of motion, and a release of muscular tension and pain. Using enough pressure to have therapeutic effects, this technique is slow and deep, as strokes move patiently through the tissue as it relaxes and allows the work. To many, the slow and deep work is also soothing and relaxing. One may feel a bit sore after receiving deep work. This soreness generally lasts only a day. Then the new qualities in the structure can be felt.
Trigger Point Release
Trigger points are contracted nodules or taught bands of muscle tissue that don’t know how to turn themselves off. They can cause many effects in the neuromuscular system, including muscle pain, weakness, numbness, tingling, restricted range of motion, tenderness, ache, fatigue and irritability. Manual point work is a very effective therapy for releasing them. The therapist must match the tone of the tissue to be able to effectively engage it, so often deep pressure, felt as an intense or ‘good pain,’ is necessary. This therapy is extremely effective for chronic pain, myofascial pain syndrome, frozen shoulder and other loss of ROM, and injury recovery. It is an art to find the points and gently and effectively release them.
I use this ancient art delicately and intuitively during most bodywork & energywork sessions. Using organic essential oils made from the flowers, leaves, and bark of different plants, a few drops of specific oils are added into massage oil or held near the nose for the client to inhale the scent. Depending on which plant, the effects can be stimulating, refreshing, clearing, or relaxing. Aroma effects mental & emotional state by affecting the limbic system via the olfactory nerve, or the sense of smell. (The limbic system is the area of the brain that regulates emotions.) Some essential oils applied topically in massage oils are also muscle relaxants, or stimulate circulation. Many of the oils I use are high spiritual vibration, effecting the consciousness and light body.
Bodywork for Pregnancy & Post Partum
Bodywork for mamas-to-be takes into account the changes that pregnant women are going through, and utilizes several techniques to provide a holistic therapy great for women throughout the entire 9 months of pregnancy. The massage work is gentle and effective for bringing comfort and relaxation to women’s changing bodies, reducing swelling in extremities, and reducing back aches. I bring other techniques to the table, such as Reiki and Craniosacral, that further support mother and baby during the journey of initiation that is pregnancy and birth. Postpartum, the mother’s body is in need of nourishing energywork, tissue work to relieve neck and shoulders from breastfeeding, and craniosacral work to the pelvis to heal brith trauma. Side-lying position is used during prenatal treatments. I am available for outcalls during labor, birth, and postpartum.
Bodywork for Fertility
Bodywork for Fertility is a natural treatment for women preparing to conceive and those facing fertility challenges. This protocol has supported women who desire to consciously and intentionally conceive, as well as women facing fertility challenges. I have experience supporting women through the processes of IUI, IVF, as well as clientele who have not needed these treatments after working with me. This specialized session includes several techniques that physically and mentally aid in conception, including Gentle Colon Cleansing Massage, Deep Pelvic Massage (deep and gentle massage therapy to the abdomen breaks up adhesions & scar tissue, releases held stress, increases blood flow & vitality to reproductive organs), Reflexology for Fertility (supports endocrine & organ health), TMJ Release (explore the important relationship the TMJ (Jaw) has to pelvic health), Craniosacral Therapy (unwinds mental and body tension, balances, and centers at the deepest level-the central nervous system). It is best to receive this session during the time in between menstruation and ovulation, and optimally as many times as possible during that 2 week period.