horses at the Vermont massage school campus

View of the cliffs and beach from the massage school at Praia da Luz, Portugal

Massage instructor Michael Jamieson coaches a student at School for International Bodywork in Portugal

Integrative Massage Training Courses Descriptions

Weekends and 5 day training Workshops

Below you will find descriptions of many of the classes on the current Vermont schedule, including:


Contact us for more information about any of the courses you have an interest in.

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Foundations in Integrative Bodywork - A Program in Four Parts
Level: Open to All Levels
Location: North Bennington, Vermont
Instructors: Michael and Judith Jamieson

Integrative Bodywork addresses and integrates the physical, energetic and emotional levels. The unique massage taught in this program is noted for being simultaneously deeply relaxing and truly invigorating. We are excited to announce a new program and a new way to begin studying Integrative Bodywork.

The emphasis during this foundation program, and throughout the full training, is on the quality of touch - the development of sensitivity and awareness in the hands and the ability to be fully present.

Over the course of the Foundation Program you will learn the fundamentals of massage and a simple, but effective full body sequence of strokes designed to create a sense of flowing wholeness in the recipient. Class begins with a warm-up designed to strengthen and release tension from your body as it increases your anatomical awareness. You give and receive daily sessions from fellow students. The small student teacher ratio allows for close supervision and assistance.  The class is open to students from beginner to working professional. We work with movement, breath, sound and energetic and emotional release techniques. In our approach to teaching bodywork there is a strong emphasis on the flow of your massage and the ease and fluidity with which you work - what we call the "dance" of massage. This unique focus on the freedom, flow and efficiency with which you use your body makes a huge difference both in how the massage feels to give and how it feels to receive. 

The focus will be on grounding, centering, and the quality of your touch while teaching you the basic vocabulary of massage. Partner exercises will increase the awareness and sensitivity in your hands. You will practice with supervision, with attention to how you use your body and what you are able to feel and notice.

This program is the part of the Professional Program in Integrative Bodywork, leading to certification in Integrative Bodywork and eligibility to take the National Certification exam. Priority in registration for the Foundation Program will be given to students who are enrolling in the full program. If space permits, Part 1 will also be open to students who only want a brief introduction to massage or who would like to attend just the first part of the program as a taster before committing to further training with us in Vermont or Portugal. 

Integrative Bodywork addresses and integrates the physical, energetic and emotional levels. The unique massage taught in this program is noted for being simultaneously deeply relaxing and truly invigorating. We are excited to announce a new program and a new way to begin studying Integrative Bodywork.

The emphasis during this foundation program, and throughout the full training, is on the quality of touch - the development of sensitivity and awareness in the hands and the ability to be fully present. 

Over the course of the Foundation Program you will learn the fundamentals of massage and a simple, but effective full body sequence of strokes designed to create a sense of flowing wholeness in the recipient. Class begins with a warm-up designed to strengthen and release tension from your body as it increases your anatomical awareness. You give and receive daily sessions from fellow students. The small student teacher ratio allows for close supervision and assistance.  The class is open to students from beginner to working professional. We work with movement, breath, sound and energetic and emotional release techniques. In our approach to teaching bodywork there is a strong emphasis on the flow of your massage and the ease and fluidity with which you work - what we call the "dance" of massage. This unique focus on the freedom, flow and efficiency with which you use your body makes a huge difference both in how the massage feels to give and how it feels to receive. 

The focus will be on grounding, centering, and the quality of your touch while teaching you the basic vocabulary of massage. Partner exercises will increase the awareness and sensitivity in your hands. You will practice with supervision, with attention to how you use your body and what you are able to feel and notice.

This program is the part of the Professional Program in Integrative Bodywork, leading to certification in Integrative Bodywork and eligibility to take the National Certification exam. Priority in registration for the Foundation Program will be given to students who are enrolling in the full program. If space permits, Part 1 will also be open to students who only want a brief introduction to massage or who would like to attend just the first part of the program as a taster before committing to further training with us in Vermont or Portugal. 

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Thai / Shiatsu Bodywork Intensives
Level: Open to All Levels, except Part IV Intermediate/Advanced
Location: North Bennington, Vermont
Instructor: Ken Nelson, Ph.D., L.M.T.

Thai-Shiatsu Bodywork, a creative blend of Thai massage, shiatsu, yoga and meditation, energizes the giver as you calm, balance and recharge the receiver.

In each workshop you will learn to apply powerful acupressure techniques while deeply supporting the receiver in assisted-yoga stretches. Moving effortlessly from your dynamic body center (hara) you will discover how to apply acupressure by leveraging, leaning, and lowering body weight rather than tiring yourself with muscle strength. Pressure points for specific health purposes will be taught as well as points to awaken and balance the vital life force along the body's pathways of subtle energy as you also facilitate blood flow and stimulate lymphatic drainage.

The marriage of Thai massage and shiatsu allows you to apply a range of techniques while varying the practice to suit your own body dynamics and needs.

Seasoned practitioners will gain deeper insights and expand their technique while learning to work with new understanding and greater ease. Newcomers to Thai/Shiatsu will experience supportive learning, empathy, warmth, humor and a thorough introduction.

Thai-Shiatsu is done fully clothed on comfortable floor mats. Since crawling is necessary, people with knee sensitivity may wish to discuss the training with the instructor ahead of time.

Note – This series of courses is open to all interested students at an introductory level. The series is especially suited for bodyworkers, bodywork students, therapists, yoga teachers, health care and movement professionals and martial artists. The four part program may be taken as part of the GMI’s Integrative Bodywork Professional Program or on its own, leading to certification in Thai/Shiatsu. The program is designed so that the first three segments may be taken in any order as part of the certification program or singly as a complete experience. Part IV, Reading and Treating the Body-Mind-Spirit in Thai/Shiatsu can be taken as long as at least one previous segment or the equivalent has been attended.

CEC INFORMATION: 40 Category A CEC's through NCBTMB are available if there is enough interest. Some evening sessions required for CEC's.

Guest teacher Ken Nelson Ph.D., L.M.T. is an exceptional educator with more than 25 years experience. He is also a certified Kripalu Yoga teacher and healing arts therapist in the Kripalu, Ohashi-Masunaga and Thai traditions.

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Energy-Based Approaches to Bodywork
Level: Open to All Levels
Location: North Bennington, Vermont
Instructors: Michael and Judith Jamieson

In this workshop we will explore different pathways to experiencing the body’s energy. The intention is to increase your perception and awareness of the flow of energy as well as to teach techniques for stimulating and balancing this energy in yourself and others.

The more present you are, and the more alive your touch, the more likely it becomes that emotions will surface in your client. Your work begins to touch a deeper level and more dramatic results, even life changing ones, can occur.

This workshop offers an opportunity to explore your life energy, the force which enlivens us physically, spiritually, emotionally and mentally. Massage and bodywork can help open up the flow of energy by:

  • reducing muscle tensions that directly block it,
  • increasing the ability to breathe freely, which increases the energy level, and
  • by working directly with the flow of energy itself.

When energy begins to flow more freely, tensions loosen, the breath deepens and the body softens. Buried feelings can emerge. These are feelings that were in some way held in the body and not fully experienced and/or expressed. It is important to create a safe space to allow these feelings to move. The result is a profound sense of inner well-being and connection.

The class hours will vary between experiential exercises, demonstrations, theory and practice sessions. You will learn energy balancing techniques, particularly Polarity; truly present touch; awareness exercises and other techniques to encourage the acceptance of deep feeling and the ability to be fully present with another.

Our goal in this intensive is to:

  • Expand your understanding of the connection between muscle tension and emotion.
  • Introduce the concepts of the armoring segments and their relationship to chakras or energy centers.
  • Help you to perceive the signs of blocked energy and to recognize indications that they are beginning to release.
  • Increase your ability to be aware of and comfortable with your own feelings and those of another.
  • Encourage you to create an atmosphere of safety and acceptance in which a client can feel and experience whatever they need to.
  • Teach you how to gently facilitate the experience while maintaining boundaries and without becoming intrusive.

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Sports Massage Incorporating an Energetic Understanding 
Level: Foundations in Integrative Massage required
Location: North Bennington, Vermont
Instructors: Michael and Judith Jamieson

Sports massage is not just for athletes. Everyone can benefit from these techniques. Stress, posture, working from a desk, pregnancy etc all contribute to muscle strain & tension and sports massage can help. However serious athletes and those who are physically active also derive tremendous benefits from sports massage. It aids in fine-tuning their performance, prepares them for exercise or competition and assists them to recover rapidly after an event, activity or injury.

Sports massage helps to optimize the positive factors that affect performance such as healthy muscle and connective tissues; normal range of motion; high energy; fluid and pain-free movement; and mental calm, alertness and concentration. It can help minimize negative factors such as dysfunctional muscle and connective tissue, restricted range of motion, low energy, pain, and anxiety.

Sports massage techniques can be beneficially incorporated into any massage for any client. They can also used on their own.

This program is unusual in incorporating an energetic understanding into the work as well as focusing on the physiological effects and the relevant pathology. Traditional sports massage techniques are both more effective, and also more enjoyable to receive, when an awareness of energy blocking and releasing is included.

The program will include practice sessions with emphasis on feeling for knots and tension bands, as well as practicing new techniques and incorporating them into your existing massage practice. Theory will include the general theory behind sports massage, trigger points, tender points, working with scar tissue and primary causes of injury.

Strokes taught will include compression, rocking and vibration, friction, multi directional cross fiber, myo-fascial work and some deep tissue, as well as complementary energy work. Time permitting we will cover specific sports and injury vulnerabilities.

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Approaches to the Cranial Sacral System
Level: Open to All Levels
Location: North Bennington, Vermont
Instructor: Janet Evergreen

The craniosacral system consists of the cranium (containing the brain), the spine (containing the spinal cord) all the way down to the sacrum and coccyx. Thus it incorporates the entire central nervous system.

Cranial Sacral Therapy (CST) is based on the principle that our bodies know how to heal themselves. Balancing the cranial sacral system is a gentle non-invasive way to benefit overall health and restore healthy patterns after stress or trauma. If any of the cranial bones become jammed together or strained in some way, there is a restriction of the pumping of cerebrospinal fluid. The whole nervous system is strained. Restrictions are caused by physical or emotional traumas. These events are essentially ‘frozen’ into our bodies until they are released.

While CST had its origins in the medical model, many practitioners discovered that it could be easily incorporated with Eastern theories involving chakras and energy healing.  In this course you will learn basic concepts for healing in yourselves, your families, and clients. There will be demonstrations of how to approach and balance the cranial sacral system. The primary focus will be on how to activate and listen to our innate intelligence in the fluid body.  

With playfulness and spaciousness, you will learn to use the body's own movement towards wellness and its own language to "change".  You will also be provided with cognitive and practical skills for learning how the cranial sacral system connects with balancing bones, muscles and organs. The workshop will incorporate Zapchen and Continuum movement work as part of the teaching.

Guest teacher Janet Evergreen’s experience in cranial sacral technique includes extensive training with mentors at the Osteopathic School of Medicine in Lewisburg, WV as well as training at the Upledger Institute through Advanced Cranial Sacral and Advanced Visceral Manipulation, including teaching and assisting in the Upledger Clinic and many years of practice. Her mission is to ignite and nurture the spark in peace builders, care givers, teachers, leaders, and children so that they can become peaceful effective change agents for themselves, their families and community, and the Earth. Her background includes 15 years Tibetan Buddhist Meditation, Native American (Cherokee) practice, sacred dance, Zapchen and Continuum.

Janet brings passion and joy to body-oriented healing arts, weaving body/mind awareness with meditation and peace-building skills. With an emphasis on self-care she teaches CranialSacral Therapy, Spiritual processing, meditation and Zapchen.

How to find CranialSacral practitioners:

The Upledger Institute and the Milne Institute lists their own graduates: www.upledger.com and www.milneinstitute.com

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Skinner Releasing Technique for Body Workers
Level:
Open to All Levels
Location: North Bennington, Vermont
Instructor: DD Dorvillier

This training can dramatically increase the ease and effectiveness with which you work. Skinner Releasing Technique (SRT) is a movement based, body mind integration technique using partner assisted exercises, imagery and tactile studies. In this workshop you will further your experiential knowledge of anatomy and body mechanics, while learning to work with more power, rhythm and musicality yet with less effort and stress on your body.  In addition to experiential work and practice of the new releases, you will receive supervised coaching at the massage table as you practice whatever type of bodywork you customarily do, helping you to incorporate your new awareness into your work. You will also learn release techniques and guided imagery that you can use with your clients. Part of the goal is to have your work feel as good to give as to receive.

We will also use Authentic Movement to further explore the connection between mind, body and feelings. This training segment has  profound impact on experienced body workers as well as newer practitioners.

Guest teacher DD Dorvillier has been teaching movement and creating dance works in New York City since 1989. As a certified instructor of SRT Ms. Dorvillier has taught nationally and internationally, as well as offering workshops in Performance, Composition, and Improvisation. Other areas of study include Hatha Yoga, Martial Arts, Voice, Butoh, and Integrative Massage.

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