Three Workshops with Bill Commerford

Bill is a long term practitioner of Inner Qigong and coordinates an undergraduate course in Movement Shiatsu at the Ki Kai Shiatsu School in London. He is offering three linked workshops helping you to work with clients online.

Movement Shiatsu Experiential Approaches to Guided Self-Treatments

  1. Necks: Saturday 6th March Midday (12:00 p.m. – 2:00p.m.) London UK
  2. Backs: Saturday 20th March Midday (12:00 p.m. – 2:00p.m.) London UK
  3. Balls, Bands, Floors & Walls: Saturday 24th April Midday (12:00 p.m. – 2:00p.m.) London UK

Zoom Spring 2021 Workshops led by Bill Commerford 

If you would like to attend and know others who might be interested, please email Bill or pass on my email address:    

These sessions provide opportunity to bridge some of the gaps between what we do when participating in on-line classes or when leading and sharing our skills with others as therapists, in ways that are accessible to different learning styles, so that we can empower clients and / or those attending our classes enabling their active involvement in these exercises or in their treatment and healing process. Modelling exercises (virtually) alongside clients can introduce aspects of negotiating, guiding, 2-way feedback and treatments that are still interactive. You may find it useful to have a yoga mat, a futon or one blanket to lie on, a second blanket to cover you and 2 or 3 cushions.

Using some of the features of Zoom and remote learning might appear initially to present technological issues and concerns of being ‘too remote’ and potential difficulties of how to communicate as this won’t be quite as we might do, face-to-face, through direct touch. Nevertheless, using the strengths and limitations of the medium and being on-line rather than in-person, we can make the most of the technology and guide others if we adapt our ways of giving space and communicating clearly to involve clients directly and actively in their treatments. In the process we can develop our communication skills to give space and enable those with whom we work, opportunities to explore and negotiate these processes so that it models an interactive approach to serve the needs of the client.

These workshops focus on remote treatments as fun but safe exploratory and experiential processes. The first two are themed around parts of us and the third to use what the client has that they can use or with guidance (mindful of health and safety) adapt that might assist them. The interactive techniques to guide others will be used throughout all three workshops and attendees are invited to ask questions before break out sessions when they’ll have chance to explore exercises and techniques themselves. There will also be time at the end of each workshop to discuss and feedback on your experience. Each workshop will be recorded and available for attendees to watch in their own time. Each workshop is stand alone, or can be attended as a series. Sessions are by donation which can be made by transfer – details below: 

Necks: The first workshop focuses on treating the neck and how we might include its neighbours, the head and shoulders in self-treatments to enable a greater sense of those inter-relationships and their effect on how comfortable we feel, and the quality and range of our movement and voice. We’ll explore having a dialogue with non-verbal parts of ourselves and then how we might introduce that to clients we work with in self-treatments. You’ll have opportunity to explore this both guiding and being guided. The techniques and ways of working with the client could therefore be adapted as appropriate to working with clients on other parts of them. The approach is in working with what is possible and with what is, rather than feeling limited by what we cannot do with direct touch … 

Backs: The second workshop focuses on aspects of what we might do if a client contacts us regarding general back issues that they are experiencing and how by negotiating and working with what is, we can adapt techniques to inhabit our breath to feel connection with those parts of our back we don’t usually see but we can feel by guided touch and explore condensing and expanding our space, and unforced movement and how we might use our breath to feel / explore elasticity. We’ll explore (and for some re-visit) having dialogue with yourself and in turn facilitating this for others so as to explore what feels appropriate and what might help. What works for one, might not for another – the focus is to work with what is and how we might work with a person / client to be attuned and responsive to their needs …

Balls, Bands, Floors & Walls: The third workshop looks at how we might make use of balls, bands, floors and walls: creative use of what clients will have: walls and floors or that clients may have, in the form of thera-bands and physioballs. This is an opportunity to try something new and safely too. If you attend you’ll find it useful to have two thera-bands each of 1.5 – 2.0 metres in length which can enable you to have a sense of connection and elasticity and sense of agency in how we move. The Swiss / physioballs are fun to bounce around with but can enable us to experience a sense of support from below and we can explore trust and receiving support in a playful way. Standard physio balls are 65cm diameter for so-called ‘average’ heights of person but for people taller than 180cm (5’10”) in height a 75cm diameter Swiss ball is better and if you are less than 160cm (5’2″) in height then a 55cm diameter Swiss Ball is probably better. In addition the mini physio balls of 20 – 25cm diameter are also useful if used independently or in conjunction with the larger balls. If you don’t have small physio balls you can also make use of small cushions; if you don’t have thera-bands, 4m of elastic cut in two is a possible creative solution! The purpose is play and creative use of alternatives wherever possible, if clients don’t have access to specialist equipment. Using the readymade support of floors and walls in guided self-treatments can enable an enhanced sense when working on ourselves and remotely using gravity and body mass in different ways to many conventional treatments sitting or lying down.