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Holistic Approach: Exploring Integrative Bodywork with an OT Perspective

Hi, I’m Kim. As many of you know I am the Occupational Therapist (OT) here at Featherstone.

I have been away from the clinic for a couple of weeks completing additional training and professional certifications, making it a great time to write the third part of my OT blog and talk about our Integrative Bodywork offering.

Integrative Bodywork is an OT service at Featherstone that reflects my holistic nature as a practitioner. I wanted to offer something that draws upon my experience as an OT, structural bodyworker, and somatic educator to help support specific concerns, along with discovery of possibilities and potential within our bodies, minds and lives.

Holistic OT is an approach that emphasizes the interconnectedness of the mind, body and spirit, seeking to provide comprehensive and integrative care to enhance overall quality of life. Sessions can address not only physical needs but also emotional, social, and spiritual well-being.

Sessions may range from highly practical, focused on supporting specific aspects of your life, to explorations of possibility and potential, in pursuit of meaning and things that matter to you.

Using this holistic OT framework, Integrative Bodywork is delivered through a variety of bodywork modalities, manual therapy techniques and somatic approaches to address whole-person health. We work together to create a plan that incorporates your needs or desires and choose methods that resonate with you.

Ultimately, each session is about creating safety and space for you to move toward your own vision of health and life.

Most sessions involve working together in a hands-on nature, which might involve structural myofascial release and neural manipulation to help support your enjoyment of cycling for example. Perhaps we might use joint mobilization and perceptual approaches to support your studies during a long semester at university. Maybe we would use muscle energy techniques and a Feldenkrais approach to explore possibilities in ergonomic comfort at work.

Some sessions are not hands-on, which means we might explore possibilities in breath and your mind-body relationship. Maybe we would work to manage pain that’s affecting your sleep through a somatic (body-based) approach to muscle repatterning. Perhaps we might explore the balance within your body to help with feeling more stable, contrasting kinematics with perception.

I’m grateful to have a wide variety of choices to help support you. My research and clinical focus as an OT are heavily neuroscience-based, using principles of neuroplasticity and motor learning to help find potential. I’ve undertaken further professional training in somatic (body-based) approaches to trauma and perceptual approaches to movement.

I also offer OT classes at Featherstone, which are designed as a complement to my clinical services. They are all designed as explorations, with different purposes in mind:

  • Ways of Being uses interactive perceptual and experiential approaches to explore possibilities in how we move and relate to our surroundings. It’s designed to support emotional and physical resilience, a safe space to explore mindfulness and movement.

  • Ageless Mindset uses slow, guided mindful physical movements to retrain muscle patterning within your body. It’s designed to support physical ease and dynamic stability in movement.

  • Body Awareness combines Rolfing movement and Feldenkrais principles and is designed to help you find more choices in the way you move, exploring individual potential and somatic (body-based) knowledge.

I’m looking forward to supporting your potential and performance in the activities, life roles or occupations that are important to you. If they’re important to you, they’re important to me.

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