Liesje Smith

Certified Rolfing ®

About Liesje

Clients come to Liesje because of her experienced and integrated understanding of the body and mind as they are reflected in posture and movement. Using hands-on repatterining, movement education and deep sensitive touch, Liesje helps restore greater aliveness and mobility in places that have become dormant, relieving long standing patterns of pain. Her refined and dedicated study of Somatic and Rolf Movement offers clients simple yet effective tools that support greater coordination and enliven movement awareness,

Liesje has worked with professional athletes and dancers, children and adults with movement impairments, mechanics, farmers, yoga practitioners, people who have experienced trauma, people with Parkinson, Multiple Sclerosis and other neurological challenges, people experiencing high stress, people of all ages from 0-100 years, and people wanting a greater relationship with their bodies.

Liesje is a certified Rolfer™, Advanced SourcePoint practitioner, a Somatic Movement Therapist and dancer. Besides maintaining her private practice for over 20 years, helping people refine the structure of their bodies, she also has taught movement in colleges, studios and schools.

She has a degree in dance from Naropa University; a certification from Moving On Center-a school for Somatic Movement Therapy, dance improvisation and performing arts and; structural integration training from Kinesis and The Rolf Institute. She also has studied Chinese Medicine, Energy Healing and SourcePoint. Besides Rolfing, she also currently DJ’s at Dance Tribe and teaches a Functional movement class monthly called Moving for Essence-Dance Rolf Movement.

Her work with people is informed by Rolf Movement®, Body and Earth, Experiential Anatomy, Bartenieff Fundamentals, Body-Mind Centering, Feldenkrais, Alexander Technique, Continuum, Soul Motion, Skinner Release, Embodyoga, Qi Gong, Chinese Medicine, Energy Medicine and SourcePoint. Liesje has been working in the healing and moving arts for 28 years.

 

 

Longer Version:

I was five years old when I first had a movement teacher who opened my mind to the field of Somatics—movement studies that emphasize internal physical perception. Sarah McMahon-who still teaches in Burlington, Vermont, and is still my friend and colleague, offered a movement experience far beyond the norm.

At age 16, I studied with her again in a small, empty room, upstairs from the Daily Bread Bakery in Richmond, Vermont. She taught me the Bartenieff Fundamentals—primary and natural movement pathways that elicit conscious, integrated flow of intrinsic evolutionary development. That’s a mouthful-I know! In other words, I could learn to express  the quality, wellness and health of my form and more significantly, my form could be supported to show me the qualities, expressions and wisdom that wanted to be noticed.

In college at the Naropa University, a Buddhist contemplative school, I encountered the work of Bonnie Bainbridge Cohan, “Body-Mind Centering.” It offered further perspective on how each system of the body expressing itself through perception, and the fundamental journey of developmental movement patterns.

One can consider organs, fluids, tissue, glands, muscles and bones – every system supports and expresses through our being.

My first formal training in Somatics was Somatic Movement Therapy at the Moving On Center with Martha Eddy, Carol Swan, and many others in Oakland California in 1991. They gave us a thorough background in Laban, Bartenieff and Body-Mind Centering, as well as Feldenkrais and Alexander Techniques. Our small intimate classes were impressionably filled with experiential anatomy, embodied physiology, developmental movement patterns, learning about the reflexes as initiators to movement patterns, singing and dancing. We studied how the environment and our actions shape us!

As I learned to explore dynamic and fluid movement, I witnessed a restoration of my own structural injuries to normal health, which continues to sustain me to this day. For a long time, I thought these insights were a special uniqueness that only some understood, but as I continue this path, I faithfully understand that others can experience what I experience through movement, and sensation and we can share the exploration.

Now, I primarily practice Rolfing® and Rolf Movement® and Sourcepoint Therapy. I include Sourcepoint Therapy® in every session to help your body integrate the work more deeply. I also teach movement classes locally and in other parts of the country.  I also enjoy studying dance improvisation and performing dance whenever possible!

Education:

  • Bachelors Degree of Art: Movement Studies, Naropa University, 1993
  • Body-Mind Centering, Alexander Technique, and Dance: Moving On Center, Oakland CA and The School for Body-
  • Mind Centering, Amherst, MA.
  • Embodyoga Teacher Training, Yoga Center Amherst, Amherst MA.
  • Asian Bodywork Therapy, Touchstone Healing Arts, Burlington, VT.
  • Kinesis Structural Integration, with Thomas Myers, Kinesis, Walpole, ME 2011
  • Rolfing Training, The Rolf Institute, Holderness, NH 2012-present
  • Rolfing and Trauma, The Rolf Institute, Lincoln VT
  • Rolfing and Natural Breathing, The Rolf Institute, Lincoln, VT
  • Accessing and Integrating the Whole Person, The Rolf Institute, Burlington, VT
  • Advanced Source Point training, Santa Fe, NM
  • Rolfing and The Female Pelvis, Pheonix AZ
  • DermoNerual Mobilization for Rolfers, Lincoln, VT
  • Body and Earth; Exploring authentic and evolutionary movement, Resources in Movement Holderness, NH
  • Reviewing the Backwork, Middlebury VT,
  • Orientation, Language Fields of Attention, Resources in Movement, Holderness, NH
  • Rolfing and the Essential Self, Lincoln, VT
  • Continuum Summit, Inhabiting the Body, Moving the World, Omega Inst. Rhinebeck, New York

Other Training:

  • Cranial Sacral Therapy, Level I; Upledger Institute, San Francisco, CA.
  • Biodynamic Cranial Sacral, Level I with Jan Pemberton, Hanksville VT.
  • Priestess Path with ALisa Starkweather, 2 years apprenticeship, Western Massachusetts.
  • Shambhala, the Sacred Path of the Warrior for 20 years.
  • Soul Motion workshops with Michael Salverson, 2014, 2015.
  • Dare to Dream, Movement as Medicine Y’acov Kahn Darcy.