Two major life events have inspired my path to bodywork:
First, after a decade working in political campaigns I got tired of seeing half of Americans as "the enemy." Once I'd decided to leave my career I had to face the dreaded, "if not this, then what?"
That question began to be answered when my left hip began to ache and become so weak it was unable to bear my weight. Terrified and confused I naturally went to: my doctor. Who didn't know and sent me to another doctor...and another...and another. Hundreds of dollars in co-pays and several tests, X-rays, and scans later I was told by an orthopedic surgeon that I simply had arthritis in my hip and I should stop running and take 800 milligrams of ibuprofen every day for the rest of my life. I WAS 34 YEARS OLD! Instinctively knowing that could not possibly be right, I sought out a massage therapist I had seen years before. In one session he'd alleviated so much of my discomfort I could begin to hold myself up again. After 3 sessions my pain was nearly gone. I WANTED TO BE ABLE TO DO THIS TOO! So I registered for massage therapy school and found the love of my life: BODYWORK!
Fast forward a bit: I had been working as a Massage Therapist for about two years when I began to see the shortcomings with the traditional bones/muscles view of the body. I was helping people...but everything seemed so temporary: either the same pain would come back (which did happen with my own hip, btw), or a new one would crop up. So I began to explore alternatives and complementary modalities. I studied everything from Reiki and Energy Medicine to dipping my toes into Traditional Chinese Medicine and Acupressure. Nothing seemed to fully fit; until I found Structural Integration. FINALLY! Here was a modality and view of the body that fit with my practical experiences and intuitions of the body's true connectedness - as well as my understanding that pain is a symptom of a problem somewhere else. I firmly believe the fascial matrix model of how we are put together is the most complete and solution-based understanding available. And by being able to latch into the matrix and manipulate it, we are truly getting to the heart of what every other modality attempts to do. And I hate to say it, but latching into the matrix is harder than it seems and most people who think they are doing it simply are not. It takes an incredibly subtle and specific training to master it.
I chose the Institute for Structural Integration over the other options for my training because the masters there understand the unique challenges of this work and have learned how to teach and communicate the methods effectively.
As Dr. Rolf was coming to the end of her life she was asked what she would do if she had more time. Her answer was "explore movement." Integrated bodies move better...and differently. They recruit the musculo-skeletal system more evenly and with less effort...thus reducing strain and joint imbalance. They are graceful and harmonized. In order to get a more complete understanding of movement and how to advise my clients on using and maintaining their new bodies, I am also a Certified Yoga Instructor and avid Yoga and Pilates student.
I pride myself on treating each client as the individual they are. It's important we work together to uncover your unique challenges and I will tailor our time together to meet your specific goals and needs.
I love what I do and I cannot wait to share the absolute magic that is Structural Integration with you!
Northern Virginia School of Therapeutic Massage
Institute for Structural Integration Certified Structural Integration Practitioner
Nexus Yoga Institute 200hour Certified Yoga Instructor