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Laurence Yeoman, current IBMT Diploma student reflects on his experience of starting the course.

I started the course in September 2021 just after my 70th birthday (never too old!). My experience of the training has been really positive.  The facilitators are extremely skilled and knowledgeable. The other group participants are all interested in somatic movement and enquiry.

We started from where we all began, with a single cell. I learn best by doing, moving and experiencing and that is exactly the approach that the IBMT diploma takes. Guided experiences form the basis of learning which is then supported by theory, visual aids, video clips and models. A lot of attention is given to speaking and recording our experiences with words or mark-making (intuitive drawing). There is also a reading list to further support our learning and development.

The Importance of Touch

From the start there has been consideration of the importance of human touch and our experience of this. We often work in pairs and our attention to differing aspects of our moving and breathing animal bodies is focused by touch. Sometimes this is self-touch and sometimes the hand of another person in the group.

What has been most valuable to me has been a developing fascination in our early physical and emotional development. I have always been aware that who we are is, to a large extent, determined by our earliest experiences, many of which are non-verbal. Talking therapies cannot always access this material very easily in my experience. I have been amazed at how through ‘authentic’ movement and being witnessed in these moments has enabled a re-experiencing of past events and trauma’s which I can now bring to consciousness and begin to understand their impact on who I am.

Alongside the training sessions is the expectation we will attend one to one sessions with an experienced practitioner. My experience is that these can go deep into who I am in a very short space of time. There’s a dynamic which is there from the start. There’s movement and physical expression, it’s relational, it’s personal, it’s embodied! It’s also really interesting for me to see how these approaches actually work in practice. How all the learning on the course and this approach can be applied to work therapeutically with people.

Also alongside the training sessions is the invitation to form peer groups. Fellow travellers who are also learning about the techniques, methods and ideas which influence this approach. It is wonderful to work alongside other people who are interested and committed to this work.

In my heart it just feels right

Overall I would say that this course has exceeded my expectations in the competent and professional way it is run, in the way I am guided into my moving body experiences, in the interesting materials that are presented, in the opportunity to be a student again alongside fellow students and in my heart it just feels right.

Laurence Yeoman 28th November 2021

Laurence is an Exeter based movement practitioner who is currently offering monthly ‘dance of awareness’ sessions in Crediton, Devon on a Sunday morning. See thismoment.co.uk for further information.