THE SOMA STORY
Soma Neuromuscular Integration Dr. Bill Williams developed SOMA in 1977 upon the bones of Ida Rolf’s classic 10 series of structural integration, which addresses the body’s structure and relationship to gravity. Williams, who holds a PhD in Psychology, studied directly with Rolf and created SOMA with her blessing. With his mental health background, he saw a need to address the whole being and wove the connection between body, mind, and spirit into the work. Williams handed over the work to Karen Bolesky in 1986. Bolesky later added the Arm Session to the 10 series because she observed in American culture a need to address the hands and arms with more specific work. She also created Somassage®, a type of massage specific to SOMA that supports the structural changes made through the Series.
SOMA works with the body’s fascia (connective tissue) to release chronic structural aberrations and realign the body. As the body rebalances in gravity and its movement becomes more efficient, people notice they have more coordination, ease, and grace. The result is a body that can process experiences more effectively with greater awareness and creative options.
Deborah Nimmons, BCSI, CSP, LMT
Board Certified Structural Integrator
Member: IASI (International Association of Structural Integrators)
I come to SOMA from another world of study and work. Taken as a whole, the story makes up a life’s journey home to healing and movement. I hold a B.A. from Baylor University in Philosophy and German, a J.D. from the University of Texas, a Massage Technician’s Certificate from the Institute of Psycho-Structural Balancing, and a Certificate in SOMA from the Soma Institute of Neuromuscular Integration®.
As a child, I was fearless, full of life, and loved to run, climb, play, and dance. I loved to move. I also loved to work with my hands, finding objects in the garbage or nature, and working to transform them into something beautiful: weaving pine needles into nests, not because anyone taught me, but because they could be woven together to create something new and useful. My mother engendered in me an awe of the natural world which developed into a love of science, or perhaps more broadly, a love of observing, engaging, and learning. Curiosity.
Soma returns me to these roots: I get to work with my hands affecting a person’s fascia to improve movement, form, and function, to reduce pain and limitation, to create the beauty of freedom and grace. Every day I get to study science, nature, art, movement, and (most importantly) the person in front of me. I get to use all of me to help someone else.
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