Somatic Stretch® - The Back Story
Resonating with the vibe I found and it became another story from only Libre. I participated in many healing modalities in this beautiful valley.
The original Chumash tribe felt the valley had healing properties. This spirituality, this mystique has been felt by many people who have come and settled in the Ojai Valley. The early settlers embraced the clean air and bathed in the hot sulphur springs. Some of today’s residents are here for the same reason: a local seeing us standing in the park and studying a map comes over to tell us that James Hilton’s 1933 novel Lost Horizon was filmed in Ojai because the valley was already seen as a Shangri-La.*
“There is a vortex here,” he says, “an electromagnetic force that was even noticed by the astronauts in outer space. It looked like water going down a drain. It’s caused by the collision of the North American Plate moving north on the Pacific Plate.
Back to Somatic Stretch® which I discovered in Ojai!!
I went to a class, housesat, and became friends with Meredith, the 3rd generation founder of Somatic Stretch® With her retreats and presentations I became chief house and cat sitter - in her cottage on a beautiful orange and avocado grove with an incredible view of the Topa Topas.
Over the last 4 years I've loved the deep gentle work of Somatic Stretch® and how I felt after - much more easeful - I even felt after a class that my legs were taking me for a walk - they were energized and relaxed and at ease with every step.
These practises will keep a body more limber. Meredith's mom, Lilian at 46 years of age, danced the lead in Romeo and Juliet at the National Ballet’s 25th Anniversary performance - it had been over 13 years since she'd danced with the Canadian National Ballet as she'd been with them from their inception in 1952.
Through the stretches her father taught and her own determination to ‘open her body’ Lilian developed techniques that we use today. These same techniques allowed her body to dance this Juliet performance and be called "nothing short of a miracle"
Meredith, the 3rd generation founder is now integrating 25 years of experiential learnings as a shiatsu practitioner and energetic healer. In August 2019 she was featured on the Resonance Science Foundation’s summer stage for her fractal concepts of the physical body and organ systems. The Foundation also hosts her teaching programs
Meredith recalls, ‘it was fairly usual to arrive home to mom and grandfather stretching on the floor in the living room’ Meredith’s grandfather, mother and herself. Below is a photo of Meredith Sands Keator and her mom Lilian Jarvis
I am grateful for becoming aware of Somatic Stretch® and know it can produce profound changes in the body - that is why I want to now share it with you - I've been practicing for 3 years and now aa a senior teacher I'm excited to share.
With these carefully designed practises we focus on inner awareness, and infuse our body with breath. Utilising bi-directional stretches, the Golgi tendon reflex and focussed attention we gently open and allow the ease naturally present to unfold.