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How to Take 15 Years or More Off Your Body!

Stress, Tension, Trauma and the accumulation of muscle patterns are greatly responsible for the phenomenon we call "aging".

This weekend at the Somatic Awakening Retreat at the Mt. Baldy Zen Center, I watched my students transform their bodies and their faces from the inside out!

One woman, had her back arched and tight, noticing how fatigued she felt just sitting upright.

Another woman had "bad posture"

--a heavy slump that seemed to overtake her body. One man had pain in his shoulder and a feeling of being unbalanced as he walked.

By the end of the retreat, miracles had taken place.

Aches and pains vanished, along with stiffness and any belief in stuck-ness.

This is the POWER of Hanna Somatic Education. During the retreat everyone experienced:

- 4 full length movement classes, designed to release your torso 360 degrees.

- 2 private hands on bodywork sessions (with an emphasis on face and jaw tension).

- A powerful two hour Somatic Yoga Workshop to build a mantra and plant this seed of being in your unconscious mind during your altered state. Mudras and Pratyahara as well!

- DELICIOUS wholesome plant-based meals, low in sodium, fat and packed with flavor and color.

I had been dreaming of this retreat for some time. I knew the results would be tremendous because all of this is based on my own somatic experience with these methods and the way a body can morph, shift and blossom when given the right methods and ingredients.

Some feedback about the retreat that was vital, acknowledged the participants' appreciation for the SPACE given in the schedule. Most classes/events had a 30-minute break between it and the next thing, even for mealtime! There was a laid-back element that greatly supported the somatic work. There was free-time on each of the two full days, with optional social engagement, so the participants could really sink in, relax, and just be.

So often, retreats are trying to maximize the the amount of activities and experiences therein to add value and help everyone get the biggest "bang for their buck". The first schedule I made reflected a desire to show off the skill and passion I have for this work, but my somatic sense tingled and said, "less is more." It seemed that it was the perfect formula for rejuvenation and release!

Emily said her friends and family told her she "looked like a different person". She said her face looked, "more symmetrical, healthier and HAPPY."

I had noticed the long-held sadness and worry draining from her face as the weekend progressed.

Another woman told us that when she had arrived, the rings she wore held tightly around her fingers, but by the end, fit loosely. She attributed this slimming (noticed in her face, too) to the low-sodium diet, as she, a self-professed "salt addict", says that she pays for her fix with puffiness.

Everyone noticed their digestion improve throughout the duration of their stay. This, in part, was due to my recipes, which are sensitive to things like excessive oil, gluten, and when beans were served, they had been soaked and pressure-cooked. It was also due to the engagement of their parasympathetic nervous systems through the deliberate, and relaxing reduction in muscle-tension throughout the whole of their bodies.

Imagine your stomach and back muscles are holding hard and tight. This would put pressure on your internal organs and is not particularly "supportive" to easeful digestion. Combine that with the fact that you are so tight, likely due to living in low-levels of fight-or-flight (like, your whole life, probably), and we can see why digestion would improve as everything loosened and quieted down, internally.

David, my long-time student, and a graduate of the Radiance program was the least astonished (although still deeply grateful!) by his transformation. He knows the power of this work because he's been working with me intensely for nearly 4 years.

Still, there is an accumulation of stress and tension throughout his ex-mountaineering body of seventy years. While the neuropathy in his feet didn't disappear during the retreat, he left feeling far more balanced, strong, grounded (to the earth), and with a feeling of peace that emanated from his whole body.

If you've never experienced a literal, true, relaxation of your musculature, it can be quite mind-blowing. One begins to see that who they thought they were, and what they thought their life was, was being, in fact, filtered through a lens of literal tension and stress. Your life and your world begin to shift dramatically when you feel FREE, CALM and FULL OF LIFE!

Additionally, during the retreat, my talented cousin Seiji OshenZa led two shamanic sound healing ceremonies that were deeply evocative and had us melted to the floor and swimming with our angels, demons and inner insects. **scuttle-scuttle**

Truly a unique and profound experience that enhanced our already-altered states.

This location, The Mt. Baldy Zen Center, is very special to me!

  1. I attended a 5-day, silent retreat here when I was eighteen weeks pregnant with my son.

  2. I got married here in a traditional Zen ceremony back in 2018.

3. Leonard Cohen lived here for many a year in the eighties and nineties. Being a HUGE L. Cohen Fan (I've got a tattoo to prove it) since my teens, I've always enjoyed being here and feeling close to him. I've even been able to ride in the fancy Lincoln that he donated to the Zen center in L.A.

The fact of holding my very first Somatic Awakening Retreat in this location had so much meaning. It's a humble, sweet, and deeply-restful place. I love the surrounding nature, the mountains... even the lack of phone service appeals to me.

I'll be looking forward to organizing another retreat here in the spring of 2024.

If you'd like to join my weekly newsletter, you'll get informed about the upcoming retreat dates.

Hanna Somatic Education when taught with depth, clarity, and practiced with consistency, can completely turn back your clock. Combine it with a plant-based diet, that honors your individual preferences, and somatic needs, and you're in for a true body-morphing experience! And really, it doesn't take very long, once you factor in the time taken for the wrinkles, anxiety, health challenges, and body tension/pain to build.

This is because your body is BUILT TO HEAL, when you have the will, the right tools and commit to consistent practice over time.

It can be HARD to change habits and build a daily practice of this unusual, transformative movement on your own. I know because it took me YEARS to come out of my chronic pain, because I struggled to create a daily practice for myself.

That is why I have created the Radiance Program. Not only to help my students unwind and release the accumulated stress, tension and trauma, but to build a daily practice that support their life, FOR LIFE. Additionally, we explore food as a source of deep support and healing, and release judgement, rules and restrictive beliefs about food.

This, as deeply demonstrated during the Somatic Awakening Retreat allows your RADIANCE to rise to the surface, no longer held back and buried by the patterns of the past that were still unconsciously running.

Releasing actually gives you MORE of your own energy back. It's reclamation work. You experience control within your body instead of trying to control everything about yourself and your environment.

What might you do if you felt at home, in safety, and free in your body?

How would your relationships shift if security reigned, and you felt fully-comfortable in your skin?

It's more than just looking 15 years younger, it's how you experience your reality, as well. It's about being present and knowing, deeply within, that you are never actually stuck. Your body was made to release. It's just that you never learned how!

Check out this inspiring podcast episode to hear more about the outcomes of the Radiance Program and Hanna Somatics, featuring an incredible energy-healer and gentle-yoga teacher who is about to graduate!

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