At the heart of my work is this question and research - how might we hold space for the wisdom of our bodies?
It's not research I can do alone. I draw on over a decade of experience in somatic research and movement education to propose structures and practices and approaches.
But the real work, the real learning, happens with clients and students (and with my own teachers!). I only have anything to share because I've learned it in relationships.
The foundation to my work is fortified by daily cultures of care in friendship, partnership and kinship. Intersectional queer femme spaces have taught me how to divest from systemic structures and into relational structures for my experience of safety and aliveness. They teach me that all knowledges are situated within relationship, context and culture. I am practiced in showing up with care, affirmation, not knowing, learning together, and choosing love as vital resource. I have touched shame, spilled grief, faced anger, held fear, watched bodies move, and uplifted pleasure. It is this practice that I bring to everything I do.
In Pilates sessions, we talk a lot about how our movement patterns shape our posture. The movement patterns of my childhood include little league sports, living room dance parties, competitive dance, dinner time gratitudes, board games, sewing machines, public school, chronic pain and a traumatic neck injury.
Earning my BFA in dance at Temple University, movement as research and creativity as method is foundational to my perspectives.
After a traumatic neck injury resulted in debilitating chronic pain, Pilates offered me, and my body, back to myself.
Pilates taught me that painful movement and emotional patterns do not have to be stuck forever. They can be revealed, moved with, and transformed.
Dancing throughout that process taught me the vital impact of expressive, supportive patterns which can be shored up, amplified and encouraged.
I started teaching Pilates immediately after graduation from my BFA. Pilates was my first career and professional love affair. That lesson of seeing and transforming patterns became the foundation of everything I do.
My Pilates teacher training comes from the 450 hour program at Drexel Pilates, under Jennifer Morley - a teacher who is beloved and deeply influential in my work. I worked with the Drexel Pilates community for over a decade, gathering experience in curriculum, movement science and community building.
I have been performing my whole life - from baby ballet recitals to undergrad dance concerts to professional roles in devised theater and improvisational scores. My time in performing art projects allowed me to explore expression, meaning making, and the creative process. In particular, I worked with Franklin Method Educator and Dance Artist Shannon Murphy for almost six years and her approach to poetic biomimicry shows up in my work often. I also spent five years with Archedream for Humankind, exploring communication and ways of being through symbol-full imagery. Most recently, I worked with Shavon Norris through Team Sunshine Performance Co and have learned a lot from her Embodied Storytelling methodology.
In 2014 I attended my first weekend with Woman Within International. This organization introduced me to the power of ritual outside of organized religion, the power of intentional culture building, and the capacity for embodied change to be deeply transformative and deeply healing, when the container is strong. Since then, I have dedicated myself to studying trauma, ritual, archetype, and healing. I am now a certified open circle lead, and facilitator in training for Woman Within.
In 2022, I earned an MA in Transformative Leadership with a focus in somatics and creativity from the California Institute of Integral Studies. That time served as an endeavor for me to integrate systems thinking, ecological connection, change-making, and critical thinking into my teaching.
Upon completion of my graduate degree, I started the container of Movement Connections, feeling called and ready to weave together these passions for movement, creative expression, ritual, relationship, and healing culture building. Here is where you find me!
BFA in Dance,
Temple University 2012
Certification of Completion, 450 hour Pilates Teacher Training Program, Drexel Pilates/Jennifer Morley 2013
MA in Transformative Leadership with a focus in somatics and creativity, California Institute of Integral Studies, 2022
Franklin Method Educator, certified 2018
Foundations in Embodied Ancestral Inquiry, Marika Heinricks, 2023
Certified Facilitator in Training, Woman Within International, 2020
Circle Skills Training, Woman Within International, 2014
Original Voice Training, Dr Clarissa Pinkolas Estes, 2018
Embodiology, Virtual Intensive, Dr S Ama Wray, 2020
Continuing Ed: Anatomy Trains/Myofascial trains, 2015
Restorative Yoga Teacher Training, Wake Up Yoga, 2017
Certificate of Completion, Level 3 Reiki Practicioner, Space Energy Motion, 2015
I am enthralled with what it means to have a body, how our lives shape our movement patterns, and how movement impacts our personal and social experiences. I am interested in celebrating, in unearthing, in saying yes to depth and truth and what’s really there beneath the surface. I endeavor to draw out current patterns of living and moving, shoring up supportive patterns and transforming destructive ones, with reverence and imagination.