As a hands-on healing arts worker and educator, I see my life-long involvement with the expressive and performing arts of music and dance, as well as Tai Chi and meditation, as my foundational training and support. These have given me the ability to connect on the levels of sensation, feeling, and listening, within my self and be able to witness the inner movement, stillness, and tonality expressed in the body and soul of the people I work with.
I was born into a family of professional classical musicians in New Haven, Ct. I played violin as a child, later switched to the oboe, and as an adult, began playing the saxophone, finding this instrument the truest expression of my voice.
In the seventies I joined forces with (the now late) Ajule Rutlin, a poet /drummer from BAG (Black Artist Group of St. Louis) to form a performing duo called Eneke-the-Bird (also to form a family -- children and now grandchildren). We explored the combination of music, poetry and dance in improvisational performances in downtown Tucson, Arizona from that time until the early nineties. 1993 began my career in body work and somewhat withdrew from the music scene to raise my then teenage daughters. In the last few years I have re-emerged into the music scene in Tucson, collaborating in two satisfying musical projects -Baba Marimba and the Temenos Quartet. And... I have created a bandcamp https://heidiwilson.bandcamp.com/ site for the music that I "name and sign" not necessarily associated with these two bands.
I studied modern dance as a child in New Haven, Ct. with Ernestine Stodelle, an early member of the Doris Humphrey dance company. Natural movements of jumping, skipping, leaping, swinging and falling were part of the playground in her classes. In my adult years I have explored African dance, contact improvisation, and Continuum.
Continuing to dance as an adult, I discovered Tai Chi and it became my dance. It was the cultivation and awareness of the experience of "chi" that led me to wanting to study energy bodywork. I have been studying/practicing Tai Chi since 1972. I began studying the Wu style Tai Chi with Dr. Wen Zee in 1997 (who passed away in 2002). My current Wu style teacher is Master Yan Yuanhua, who lives in Los Angeles. From him I am learning to cultivate my qi more than any teacher so far and am learning many subtle Push Hands concepts which is greatly nurturing my skills in bodywork. I teach Wu style Tai Chi and also a non-traditional class or workshop I call Qi Dance which utilizes concepts from Tai Chi and Qi Gong in a creative, openly structured format.
During a challenging and transitional time in my life, I began the study of Zen Shiatsu. I loved the dance of Shiatsu and blossomed with it. My background in dance and Tai Chi helped me embrace this form of bodywork that utilizes movement, stretching, breath, and pressure points to aid the flow of chi through the meridians. I immersed myself into the healing arts as a way of life. I graduated from a year long shiatsu certification program in 1993 at the Desert Institute for the Healing Arts in Tucson, Az. where I then taught shiatsu for seven years. I have taken much continuing education in shiatsu (with Pauline Susaki, Patricia Singer, Ping Lee and others) and other related bodywork modalities. I completed the Tuina program at the Arizona School of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (where I teach Tai Chi and craniosacral work). I also taught in the Shiatsu program at the Providence Institute (I taught shiatsu,shugyo, and craniosacral work).
My craniosacral studies began in 1994. I had been practicing Reiki for awhile, including this modality in my shiatsu sessions. In the stillness of the Reiki holdings, I began to notice subtle movements under my hands as I touched people. I came to realize that this must be the "cranial wave" that I had heard a little about and opened to the possibility of studying craniosacral work as soon as possible.
My first craniosacral teacher was Steve Swidler, a Tucson dentist with twenty-some years experience in cranial osteopathy, having studied with Viola Fryman, Robert Fulford, and Jim Jealous. I had once a week classes with Steve for a few months, learning some profound basics that I was able to include in my shiatsu practice. Merging craniosacral work with shiatsu has been a natural and organic process. I experience the movement of qi through the meridians and the fluid motions of the craniosacral system as different ways of describing and interpreting the expressions of the same thing -the Breath of Life in the body - that is the source of healing that runs through us all.
I began studying with Hugh Milne of the Milne Institute in 1995. In that first workshop in Salt Lake, while Hugh Milne was unwinding my neck for about one minute, I experienced my emotional body reconnect with my physical body. It's hard to explain, but the experience was very healing for me and woke me up to the profundity of this work. I graduated from the Milne institute in 2002. I assisted classes for a few years and greatly appreciate the foundation I received there.
Discovering the biodynamic approach to craniosacral work has been a profound deepening of this work for me. The approach is energetically "clean" and respectful of the client's process and of the inherent healing wisdom from within. I've studied biodynamic work with a variety of teachers including Charles Ridley (Biodynamic Cranial Touch), assisted classes for Ryan Halford, and have been blessed to have studied privately with Debra Meness, D.O. (student of Jim Jealous, D.O), have taken a workshop with Micheal Shea, an advanced workshop with Franklin Sills, and an experiential Embryology workshop with Giorgia Milne.
I began teaching my program, Riding the Wave, Touching Stillness, Craniosacral Work with a Biodynamic Perspective, in 2005. (See further description on the workshop page.) Teaching this work helps me dig in deeper to try to explain the unexplainable with honesty, integrity, and awe.
Every day is an opportunity to sit in stillness while touching my clients as we witness the miracle of life.