Donna Brooks is a somatic movement educator and therapist, Yogi, and embodied meditator who has 35 years of experience teaching, counseling and coaching in movement and the healing arts.

Blog

Embodied Inner Ecology

Just as we live in an ecological community made up of the unity and diversity of trees, plants, stones, bodies of water, animals etc..our bodies are a kind of unified ecological community. There is a “me” but there are also the parts of the whole that have their own consciousnesses.  But how often do we really get to …

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Why I use Somatic Movement as a Yoga Therapist

Most Yoga therapists I know face all types of challenges from clients. Chronic pain, incomplete recovery from surgery, problems due to disease and high levels of stress keep raising. Many clients can’t even do the most basic yoga without exacerbating symptoms. As a yoga therapist and someone who has been helping with bodily structure and …

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Image and Change- How conscious anatomy changes you.

As a teacher and coach, I use metaphor and imagery to stimulate where I think a therapeutic experience could be had. But, I ask it it to arise from the natural wisdom of my clients body. This healing movement is very typically underneath their conscious knowledge and often it takes time for their understanding to …

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Fascia Based Yoga and Movement for Parkinson’s Disease

Yesterday I had the honor of teaching a movement and yoga class for people with PD at a conference sponsored by Dartmouth- Hitchcock Medical Center. I had a room of about 150 PD patients and caregivers. I won’t ever see most of these people again so I felt a lot of urgency about giving them …

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Build Strength from Natural Rhythm and Ease

I have often been asked how to use the easy and supportive movements we learn through Original Body Wisdom in fitness, weight lifting, yoga and strength training. So, I am offering a course that will teach you how how to use relaxation as the basis for your power. This might sound counter intuitive but it isn’t at all. The truth is, we …

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The Ihunch sHuffle

Did you know that slouching can cause emotional distress and physical pain and limitation? A health psychology randomized trial study has shown that slumped participants used more negative emotion words, sad words, expressed being more at the affect of events and used fewer positive words. You know when you feel badly it’s hard ot have pep and to …

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Strong, Flexible and Pain Free = Happy Body

I have no doubt you know that your core (abdominal and spinal) strength and flexibility have a powerful effect on all parts of your body.Maybe people sense this instinctively by tightening their gut to stand taller. But did you know that your limbs and especially your extremities have a profound effect on your core? Yes, How …

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The evolutionary roots of precise and powerful walking

Fall is in the air and it’s a really great time to get out and walk. That is easier said than done if walking is tiring, painful or boring. Maybe it doesn’t feel as natural as it used to? Our bodies are built for walking. There is a lot of “genetic lineage” that led up to and …

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“What’s Keeping You From Gliding Through Life: The Yoga Of Happy, Healthy Hips”

Yoga is about understanding the art and science of life. That includes the bringing together of opposites: activity and rest, strength and flexibility, intention and receiving. What makes it possible to bring together these opposites into a cohesive whole? Integration. Integration allows our bodies and minds to flow easily and freely.     Integration helps us …

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Your Original Body Wisdom and Qigong

A lot of people have asked me if I have studied the Chinese movement and energy system — Qigong.  I was always drawn to its elegant and rich moves and underlying imagery but I had never formally studied the practice. Thankfully, over this past fourth of July weekend I attended Roger Jahnke’s Qigong workshop “Feel the Qi” at the Omega …

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The Yoga of Natural Breathing

Did you know that just being curious while relaxing creates a “sweet spot” for learning something new? Neither did I, but thanks to Lisa Wimberger, I understand how the work we do in Body Wisdom  gets us into that state. Biochemically what is happening when we experience this relaxed curiosity is that we are increasing the flow of dopamine, neuroephrine and acetolyne. …

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Change your mind, change your muscle tone

Many people ask me why stretching often gives them only temporary relief from tightness and pain. It’s because stretching does not change the brain. And to change the body we need to change the mind. Our muscles spindles have nerves that relay information between our spinal cord, brain and muscle. Technically, this function is called the …

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Happy Hips Happy Heart

Do you remember the exquisite movement you had as a child? And how happy it made you? You could jump, bounce and run with such energy and pleasure! You can’t become a child again but you can reclaim some of the happiness, natural  spring and resiliency you have lost. How? Through letting your body lead …

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The Yoga of the Core: More Pleasure, Less Work!

When I mention the word core, I am often met with groans of discouragement. “Oh, I know I don’t do enough”, is the most frequent comment. But, too much focus on abdominal strength can interfere with your body’s natural ability to support all of your joints and ease in your movement. Although the core needs to be …

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Hurting yourself doing yoga?? What??!!

Have you hurt yourself doing yoga?  Yoga???!! What??? It’s supposed to be totally safe!! And, for many of us, myself included, Yoga actually has been a primary way of getting into and knowing my body. After all, it’s a kind of slow challenge- nothing happens so fast that I am out of control. And the …

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Living From the Wisdom of your Body brings happiness and comfort

Did you know that your natural, instinctive movement is likely compromised by old habits, bad modeling, injuries, emotions and cultural norms? I have had a life long quest into recovering my natural movement and I can help recover yours. I came into body wisdom through hatha yoga. I understood the ideal of yoga, to be, making the body ready …

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Using your body to speak without stress or anxiety

Donna Brooks explains an essential tool for being effective and confident while all eyes are on you.

Change Your Movement, Change Your Life

“Movement is life. Life is a process.Improve the quality of the process and you improve the quality of life itself.”       Moshe Feldenkrais What needs to improve in your life? Do you need more fun? More relaxation? More flexibility? Less strain or pain? You can balance your mind and emotions as you unfold your …

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Strong Bones: A Well Aligned Sketeton in Motion

Donna Brooks, yoga therapist and movement analyst from Original Body Wisdom, joined us with tips on increasing bone health and developing a well aligned skeleton.