Tania Coke
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Living Through the Body

Tania Coke

As babies, we are experiential beings; our senses are alive and exposed to constant stimulation. We explore our world through our only medium – our body. Even the process of thought and experience of energy are triggered and interpreted through physical reactions.

Like so much in life, we can begin to take our senses, experiences and our body for granted. We may begin to ignore or miss early signs of ill health; equally, we may miss-out on new and positive experiences by making assumptions based upon the past.

Living Through the Body offers an opportunity to re-connect with our amazing body and all that it is able to offer. We can begin to trust it and to re-gain its trust. To love and appreciate all it has to offer and the incredible processes it performs day after day. We can live life through the physical and allow our mind to interpret these messages, as opposed to fitting our body around a peer-conscious mind-set. By bringing our mind and body together, we can also allow our body to shift with new, positive thoughts.

Living Through the Body combines exploration of the five senses, energy work and practical techniques and discussion to create a complete and rounded program of bodywork. The course includes meditation, body-awareness work, strength and flexibility work, dance, sound, massage, art and conversation.

The program runs over five days, with the third day ending at lunchtime to allow for time-out and reflection.
Day 1
Sense of Sight
Using works of art (some of which have been specially commissioned) we will explore stimulation and interpretation of this sense. We are bombarded by information in everyday life and, arguably, rely on this sense most of all. Yet, how much do we really appreciate the detail and colour in the process?

Using natural and environmental sounds in addition to music and voice, we will explore the emotions and sensations triggered by sound vibrations.
Day 2
We shall explore touch with the hands, with the use of clay and various textures; we will look at sensations of temperature and energy. We will practice self-massage and some, non-invasive shared massage.
Many cultures consider touch therapies to be a normal part of their culture; in the West however, there is still a degree of stigma and suspicion. Touch has been proven (as though we really needed proof) to be an essential part of infant development. Touch can provide comfort, bonding, information about one’s emotional state; but touch, for a multitude of reasons, can also be uncomfortable for some.

Sense of Smell
We will be using aromatherapy oils and breathing techniques to explore the subtleties of this sense. This sensitive and often over-stimulated sense can often be oversimplified. We can regard smells as merely pleasant or unpleasant. Yet smells can be trigger instant memories and emotions.
Day 3

We will work alongside the on-site caterers to stimulate our taste buds and discuss the connection between all the senses before and during tasting.
Food has come to represent so much more than sustenance. We will discuss our relationship with food and attempt to ‘put on hold’ some of our learnt behaviour in order to simply taste our food.

Free time
Day 4
In terms of structure and function, we will use conventional and complementary paradigms to look at our understanding of the body.
We will combine practices such as Pilates, Yoga and Meditation to take control of our physicality and create reciprocity of trust between the mind and body.

We will spend some time discussing the experience of living in our body and use visualisation, meditation, group and partner work to open the possibility of having a different experience of our body.
Day 5
We will begin by re-evaluating the work completed, looking at the practical and conventional understanding of the body in addition to the more complex aspects that have arisen during the program. We will spend the rest of the morning ‘playing’ through the body, using the 5 senses and a variety of mediums in order to allow free expression to emerge.

The program will be completed with massage, meditation and breath work. There will also be a session of conversation.

Participants will be encouraged to complete an evaluation form upon completion of the program; however, please do raise any comments or concerns during the course if necessary in order for us to support your comfort and involvement.