Creative and embodied self-exploration
I'm a dance therapist and yoga teacher and am passionate about making dance available to anyone and everyone. I'm also a researcher in mental health and the co-founder of Rhythm is Life, a dance program for older people I managed for two years at Heartdancers charity.
My passion for dance
I grew up in Mozambique, where dancing is very much part of life. So from a very young age, without even realising, I used dance as a form of healing. I’ve trained in different styles, from ballet to contemporary and African dances. But nothing else gets me smiling like an idiot as free dancing. I love putting on music and immersing myself in the pure joy of moving. And I do this not only to have fun but also as a way of keeping sane. It's just an inner resource I tap into to express whatever needs to be expressed. Happiness, sorrow, passion, anger, peace, fear ...
You too, can tap into this inner resource! Let me show you how YOU can do it! I've trained in dance movement therapy and yoga. I use these practices to help you connect with and listen to your own body and move as it asks for.
Oh I know what some of you are thinking. Please. Don't tell me you can't dance. Everyone can dance! If you have a soul, you can dance. Dancing is deeply rooted in us! In fact, in many non-Western cultures, dance is used as a healing art. But somehow in the Western world we lost this. My passion is to help you reclaim this natural medicine.
My journey with Yoga
In 2017 I was diagnosed with breast cancer. And one of the positive things out of this experience was that it allowed me to reconnect with yoga. I had time to meditate. Lots of time. During treatment, I spent a lot time in bed, resting. There were many days I had no energy for anything else but to meditate. And it was immensely helpful. It gave me hope, kept me positive, and focused in believing.
I had practiced different styles of yoga and meditation before, but it was only through my cancer experience that I really began to look, listen and feel inside. I saw that even though honesty has always been one of my core values, I had been living dishonestly with myself. Yoga helped me see these patterns and become more intimate with myself.
I’m inspired by how this ancient practice can support and empower people with a range of physical, emotional and mental health concerns to manage and improve their own health and wellbeing.
I also see strong complementarity between yoga and dance therapy. They aim for the same: inner awareness and realising the connection between the body, the mind and the spirit. And here lies the power of healing. Which is different from curing. A person can be cured and not healed. Because curing eliminates a disease at the physical level. For example, in the case of cancer, this often involves chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation. Healing works with our belief systems, values and patterns of behaviour, and acts on different dimensions of health at the same time - emotional, mental, social, spiritual, and physical. And for each of us there are conditions of healing that are as unique as a fingerprint. Because each of us is one of a kind.
In my approach to yoga and dance therapy, I invite you to the possibility of your own self-healing. I do this by guiding you to a practice of inner awareness, of listening to your own body and moving your emotions. By listening to your own body, you are in a better place to make meaningful choices for your health and wellbeing.
My other passions
I’m an insatiable learner and have trained in other things, seemingly not related but no doubt imbedded in the way I approach life.
I'm a soul of many passions. Dance therapy and yoga of course. And environmental protection, social justice and community development too. Over a decade ago, these passions took me to do a degree in Environmental Engineering and a Masters in Integrated Water Management. I've worked for more than 10 years as a sustainability researcher and consultant.
Through this work, I traveled to other countries, worked in cross-cultural and multi-disciplinary teams, managed stakeholder consultation processes, and facilitated many workshops and participatory learning experiences.
I carry this experience with me wherever I go now. It gives me a broader perspective of knowledge, a good dose of critical thinking and a mind that is always asking how things relate to each other, whether we're talking about our environment or our human bodies.