My interest in the interplay of the mind and body started at a young age. As a child and teenager I trained as a gymnast to national level. Gymnastics taught me how to persevere, practise, concentrate, trust and develop my body, face fears and expand my limits.
I later ran a Gymnastics club for 20 years, working with children from 5 to 16, helping them to explore and develop their physical and emotional potential. Learning to break down movements into their component parts increased my understanding and skill working with, and teaching, structure and body mechanics in movement.
I was introduced to meditation, and started to practise when I was 17. Exploring the nature of the mind has been a quiet focus ever since.
Nursing began to teach me about caring and responsibility, to deal with difficult situations and be respectful of the body’s capacity to heal.
As a Midwife, it is an awe inspiring privilege to be with pregnant women, labouring women, and newborn babies, supporting each in their natural processes. It taught me patience, respect, and the value of listening deeply to my intuitive sense of what is needed in the moment. It intrigued me how the mind state deeply influences the body’s capacity to let go and prompted my ongoing therapeutic journey and training: firstly in counselling, then Hellerwork Structural Integration and Hakomi.
Hellerwork and Hakomi continue to teach me to appreciate how resilient and vulnerable we human beings are. In working one to one with people, helping them to explore all of the complex aspects of their healing journey, I can make use of the wide variety of skills I have acquired. I find it deeply rewarding, stimulating and satisfying to help people truly grow into themselves.
Tai Chi, with its emphasis on harmonising of the body and mind, feels like my base, my foundation. It is simple, incredibly complex, deeply satisfying and hugely challenging. After nearly 20 years of practice I feel a deep humility to be a part of this profound exploration.
From a very young age, extensive travel and living on different continents enabled me to feel at ease in a wide variety of situations, cultures and climates.
Skiing from aged four taught me to challenge myself and explore my limits physically and emotionally, tightening up when skiing often heralds disaster; success is about going with the flow.
My love of the outdoors and mountains continues to nourish me.
Literature has always been a source of inspiration for me. I was attracted to teaching English with the aim of helping adolescents to think for themselves and realise their potential. I deeply enjoy helping to facilitate people’s self discovery, both through the body and their thinking processes.
In Tai Chi I have a particular interest in the development of relaxed elastic forces: how the precise placements of the body and mind intention enable the internal pathways to open; allowing pressures and forces to flow freely and unhindered from the feet to the hands; and how this fluid interplay manifests with a partner.
Through my long and continuing study with Patrick Kelly, I feel privileged to access an art of such boundless depth.
We have been together since 1972. We live in Cumbria close to the Lake District.We have two grown up sons. Raising our children with all the joys and turbulence that entailed, has been and continues to be a most profound life enhancing experience. We cherish the adult – adult relationships we have with them and their partners.
Being intimately involved with caring for all our parents in the last years of their lives has been an experience that has challenged us to use all the resources of our internal practice to find acceptance and equilibrium.
We are very grateful to our teachers, fellow students, clients, family and friends, for their support, all we have learned from them, and the unique influences they have had, and continue to have, on our lives.