Elisa Cotroneo, RSME, RSMT
Elisa Cotroneo, is a Registered Somatic Movement Educator and Therapist. She holds a Bachelors Degree in Psychology and Dance and is a graduate of The Somatic Movement Therapy Training Program in Massachusetts.
For more than 35 years Elisa has followed her passion to understand the relationship between spirit and the body and trained with many of the pioneers in the field of Movement Education and Therapy. Her life’s journey has been blessed with the presence of spiritual elders from North and South America, India and Tibet, each one sharing their traditional wisdom of the power of movement and sound to bring us closer to our true Selves. Elisa has synthesized these teaching into a unique form of somatic movement meditation that honors its roots of Yoga, Chi Gong, Authentic Movement, Mindfulness, and Dreamwork.
Elisa served on the ISMETA Board of Director’s from 2007-2014, holding the office of President from 2009-2014 and is now an Executive Consultant to the Board of Director. Her private practice in Movement Education and Therapy in upstate New York has included extensive work with individuals, groups, school districts, special education programs, therapeutic centers and arts organizations. As a professional development consultant Elisa has created workshops, retreats and online courses focusing on creativity, imagination and experiential embodied education.
Beth Pettengill Riley, MA, RSME
Beth Pettengill Riley RSME/RSMT, MA Dance Education, Stanford University has invigorated the world of movement education through her passionate blending of Continuum, Yoga and Dance for over three decades. She studied with modern dance pioneer, Hanya Holm, and served on the dance faculty of Cabrillo College on the central coast of California for 17 years. She has developed teacher training programs in creative and somatic movement for all ages and is currently on the faculty at The Kirby School in Santa Cruz, CA as the head of the Fitness, Wellness and Human Development Dept. She was a founding member and resident of Mt. Madonna Center from 1981 – 1989, helping to develop their yoga teacher training while serving on their board for three years.
Beth Pettengill Riley
Caryn Heilman, MFA, RSME
Caryn Heilman is an Authorized Continuum Movement teacher. She has an MFA in Dance from the University of California, Irvine where her graduate fellowship study focused on a somatic fluid system approach to choreography and improvisational dance performance and training supported by organic interactive media. She teaches ongoing classes in NYC and Massachusetts and virtual classes and workshops worldwide with students currently in New Zealand, Australia, Florida, Greece, Missouri, New Mexico and Canada.
Caryn is the Artistic Director of LiquidBody media, movement and dance and of Topia Arts Center, a green arts and education center in the Berkshires. She was a member of The Paul Taylor Dance Company for 10 years performing in over 50 countries and collaborated on over ten new works, directed rehearsals for several revivals and represented the United States as a cultural ambassador in Japan, China, India, Egypt, Greece, Russia, Turkey and Hungary and is featured in the Oscar-nominated documentary Dancemaker. With LiquidBody, she has presented work at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, Dixon Place and BRIC in NYC, SOMAfest in L.A., and in Greece, Italy, Mexico and Poland.
She has served on the Professional Advisory Committee of the Dance Notation Bureau and of the Somatic Movement Arts Festival.
Tony Rezac has worked and learned in the field of human potential for the past 25 years. As a Rolfer, Tony has taken hundreds of people through sessions and is known to be an intuitive and effective bodyworker. He has been featured in Time Out New York magazine, Metro newspaper, and Seattle Metropolitan magazine. Tony`s love and appreciation of movement began with his seven years of aikido and continued with his study of Feldenkrais, Roth, Continuum, and contemporary dance.
In addition to his work in the body/mind field, he is the author of “Body and Soul: The Essential Handbook for Men” and has led men’s personal development work for the past thirteen years, both for The Mankind Project and his own work. Currently, Tony does business development for Team Come True with his wife Lisa. Team Come True focuses on creating stronger teams through better emotional intelligence and authentic communication.
Tony serves ISMETA as our Treasurer, has been an integral part of the Logo and Website Development Team and has taken a leadership position focusing on Board Culture for the Board Development Committee.
Maria Luisa Diaz de Leon Z., MA, RSME, RSMT
Maria Luisa Diaz de Leon Z. is a psychologist, researcher, and movement specialist born in Guadalajara, Mexico. She served as Program Director and Core Faculty at Tamalpa Institute in California for ten years and continues to be an adjunct faculty supervising advanced students’ fieldwork projects. She obtained her M.A. in Engaged Humanities with Emphasis in Depth Psychology at Pacifica Graduate Institute.
Maria Luisa’s professional experience in psychology and the arts spans over twenty years and includes the areas of education, private practice, and community intervention. Maria Luisa has worked with many diverse populations, most recently with Latin American immigrants in San Francisco. She has conducted research projects on addiction in her native Guadalajara, Mexico and on trauma associated with domestic violence in San Francisco, CA.
Maria Luisa teaches seminars and presents at conferences internationally, and has been a strong member of the ISMETA Board of Directors serving as the Chair of the Professional Standards Committee and participating in the Communication Committee taking an active role as part of the Website Development Team.
She is currently living in San Cristobal de las Casas, Chiapas, Mexico; where she is teaching classes, leading workshops, and seeing clients.
Maria Luisa Diaz de Leon Z.
Bibiana Badenes RSME, RSMT
Bibiana is an influential somatic educator from Benicassim, Spain. As the head of Kinesis, a somatic therapy clinic, for more than 20 years, she oversees an innovative body-mind rehabilitation program for rheumatoid arthritis patients and stress management clients. Bibiana was trained both as a Physical Therapist, having graduated from the University of Valencia, and as an Advanced Certified Rolfer and Rolfing Movement Practitioner. She is co-creator of the innovative Aquatic Myofascial Integration – as well as Myofascial and Movement Trainings, both of which she teaches internationally.
A pioneer in connecting and building bridges of contact among distinct therapeutic disciplines, Bibiana searches for an inter-disciplinary dialogue through health which can be accessible to everyone. She created and directs Bodywisdom Spain to fulfil this vision www.bodywisdomspain.com.
Bibiana also trained as an Embodiment Facilitator in 2016. She is an associated teacher for Advanced-Trainings (USA).
Her love and enthusiasm for healing work and for people is immediately evident in her whole being, in her state of the art Physiotherapy clinic and in the vast number of programs she has created to assist all kinds of people to realize their potential in body, mind, heart and spirit. She enjoys a rich family life with her husband and 3 children (and her dog Zac.)
Kelly Bitov, JD, MPH
Kelly’s exploration of somatics and embodiment began with studying Contact Improvisation at Barnard College in 2005. She has since trained extensively in this form, and continues to be inspired by the inquiries it presents. Along the way, she has touched in with many of the somatic movement and therapy modalities ISMETA supports.
Kelly hold a Juris Doctor from Northeastern University School of Law, a Masters in Public Health from Tufts University, and a Bachelors Degree in Political Science from Columbia University. Her legal practice focuses on supporting communities and advocates in pushing for environmental protection and sustainability.
Donna Brooks, RSME, RSMT
Donna Brooks always loved movement. As a chíld, she twisted her body into all sorts of pretzel positions—only to later realize she was doing yoga poses intuitively. As a young woman, she studied ballet, modern dance, and hatha yoga. In 1982, as one of only a handful of yoga teachers in Washington, D.C., she built a practice that included dancers, activists, and politicians.She devoted herself to the study of Iyengar yoga with John Schumacher and later with Karin Stephan in Boston.
Teaching yoga has sparked her passion to learn everything she could about the moving body.Donna studied the foundations of Feldenkrais work, the approach of Somatics pioneer Thomas Hanna, and Body-Mind Centering. She also studied the geometry and physics of movement andmomentum with tennis pro Art Carrington and through Contact Improvisation.
Donna lives and works in western Massachusetts. Her clients include people with injuries related to naging, exercise and sports, accidents or to life trauma and illness such as Parkinson’s, MS and stroke. She leads yoga/movement classes for Parkinson’s disease patients, teaches a pain relief clinic for Valley Medical Group and has trained nurses through the Holistic Nursing Association certification program.
She taught and created yoga and menopause classes for Kaiser Permanente and has presented her work to the UMASS communications disorders department, Cooley-Dickinson hospital and for the Pioneer Valley Brain Injury support group. She also taught at the University of Massachusetts, Greenfield Community College, Charlemont Academy, Norwich College, the Hartsbrook School, and Mohawk Valley Education Services.
Donna is an ISMETA Registered Somatic Movement Therapist and Educator, a certified Yoga therapist and holds a BS from SUNY Stony Brook.
Dana Davison RSME, RSMT
Born in upstate New York in 1968, Dana studied classical ballet with Shèr Marie Farrell and Sir William Martin-Viscount before graduating from University of Texas in Russian Studies and Journalism. She co-founded and published a weekly arts magazine in Kiev, Ukraine, as well as a literary magazine and small press book imprint in New York City. She worked as a writer and designer for books and magazines, and she translated and edited movie subtitles and art exhibition catalogs.
While attending graduate school at New York University in 2010, serendipity led Dana back to her roots, to a deep, intensive study in Somatic Movement Therapy and Education with Dr. Martha Eddy. During her training in Dynamic Embodiment®, she studied Body-Mind Centering®, Laban Movement Analysis and Bartenieff Fundamentals. She experienced Continuum, Authentic Movement, Feldenkrais and Craniosacral Therapy. She worked with babies, and individuals presenting with Piriformis Syndrome and drop-foot, spinal and knee injuries, chronic migraine headaches, speech and motor impairment due to stroke, and back and hip pain. And she assisted Moving for Life® group dance classes for cancer recovery as part of a research study at NYU Langone Medical Center. A whole new world opened up.
In 2013, Dana began teaching BodyMind Dancing® and “The Body in Translation” at Dance New Amsterdam; Moving for Life at Gilda’s Club, the Jewish Community Center and NYU Perlmutter Cancer Center, and yoga and meditation at New Visions Charter High School. She collaborated with Shakti Smith on several workshops exploring yoga through the endocrine system; co-founded and co-teaches Somatic Anatomy® with Lissa Michalak, and a Somatic Wellness series and Developmental Movement course with Mandy Chan.
Dana participates in Global Water Dances, presents at BMCA conferences, and contributes to their journal Currents. Currently teaching at Brooklyn Arts Exchange (BAX), Movement Research, 92nd Street Y, Kings County and Coney Island hospitals, she also offers private sessions in Brooklyn, NY. [thesomafox.com]
She hopes to help spread the word Somatics through her work with ISMETA.
Lee Fogel, MA, RSME
Lee Fogel, is a Registered Somatic Movement Educator, Reiki Practitioner, and Interdisciplinary Artist based in Philadelphia, PA. Her company, The Visioning Body, offers group and private programs that support transformative leadership and wellbeing through creative and somatic practices.
She has fifteen years experience teaching in a wide variety of settings including schools, yoga, dance, and arts studios, wellness centers, colleges, women’s shelters, camps, HIV/AIDS wellness organizations, and conferences.
She brings a breadth of expertise and training including an MA with Distinction in Dance and Somatic Wellbeing from the University of Central Lancashire, a BA in Dance and Visual Arts from Oberlin College, traditional training and mentorship in Reiki, Usui Shiki Ryoho, and rigorous entrepreneurial training.
Learn more about Lee’s practice at www.VisioningBody.com.
Ryan Kennedy, PsyD, MA, RSME, RSMT
Ryan has a Doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology from Capella University, a Master’s degree in Somatic Counseling Psychology from Naropa University, a Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing from Regis University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of Oregon. He has been a psychotherapist since 1993 and a counselor educator and clinical supervisor since 1996. He was the chair of the Somatic Counseling Psychology Program at Naropa University in Boulder, Colorado for 9 years and served on the faculty for 18. He is currently the Executive and Training Director of Noeticus Counseling Center and Training Institute in Denver, Colorado.
Ryan’s professional background includes extensive work with graduate and post-graduate education, particularly in the areas of experiential learning, contemplative education, spiritual emergence, diversity and multiculturalism, social and restorative justice, creative process work, expressive arts therapies, and body-centered psychotherapy. Other areas of professional experience and training include work in the areas of trauma and dissociative disorders, chronic and persistent mental illness, psychiatric nursing and psychopharmacology, addictions and recovery, domestic/family violence, and living with life-threatening illnesses.
Kima M Kraimer, MA, RSME
Kima M Kraimer is a graduate of University of Central Lancashire’s Dance and Somatic Wellbeing program. She maintains a private practice as an Advanced Certified Rolfer® and Rolf Movement Educator, and assist teaches at the Rolf Institute.
Combining Permaculture Design®/Ecology with Somatic Movement Education, her interest in embodiment and personal and community development manifests in teachings presented internationally, and with wide ranging populations from the arts to farmers.
She is currently in the Diamond Approach teacher- training process. Her love of nature and on-going inquiry for expanding humanity’s potential is balanced by time spent between Northern Michigan and New York City.
Kima M Kraimer
Melanie Noblit-Gambino BFA, BA, MA, RSME, RSMT
Melanie Gambino is on faculty at The Conservatory of Dance at SUNY Purchase College and is the Resident Choreographer and Director of Dance and Somatic Movement Meditation and Mindfulness at the Harvey School. She has over 30 years of professional experience in the Somatic Movement Meditation/Healing Arts/ Education and Performing Arts fields and holds a BFA, BA, and MA in these related fields. Melanie serves on the ISMETA Arts and Education Committee. As a Continuum Teacher she was mentored and authorized to teach by its founder Emilie Conrad and is an active member of CTA and Watermark Arts Choreographer/Performing Artist.
Jane Okondo, MA, IBMT, RSME, RSMT
Jane has a Master’s degree in Dance and Somatic Wellbeing from the University of Central Lancaster, a Diploma in Integrative Bodywork and Movement Therapy from IBMT, UK and a Post Graduate Diploma in Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy from Karuna Institute. She was authorised by Emilie Conrad as a Continuum Movement teacher and currently participating in the Circles of Four programme for the Discipline of Authentic Movement.
Jane has been in private practice since 1994 and is currently offering Soma Flow therapeutic sessions and somatic movement education workshops in the UK and Europe. www.somaflow.co.uk
She is part of the teaching faculty for Diploma in Integrative Bodywork and Movement Therapy in Moscow and part of the team for the workshop programme for Integrative Bodywork and Movement Therapy in the UK. www.ibmt.co.uk
She co-founded the Somatic Movement Gatherings organisation, which runs 3-day events for practitioners to meet and experience existing practice through workshops and dialogue circles with emerging ideas the field, as well as place to resource and make links locally, nationally and internationally. www.somatic-movement.org
Anna Rider, MA, RSME, RSMT
Anna Rider is a somatic movement educator, teacher, chorographer and dance advocate for thirty-five years. She received her MFA from Temple University and her certification as a Laban Movement Analyst from the Bartenieff/Laban Institute of Movement Studies. Most recently Anna has been teaching creative movement to children and providing professional development for classroom teachers. Anna has worked with; MATI (Maryland Artistry in Teaching Institute), Forklift Danceworks and Mindpop’s Creative Learning Initiative. Anna has also taught at the University of Iowa, the Laban/Bartenieff Institute of Movement Studies extension program at University of Maryland College Park, Community College of Baltimore County, Baltimore School for the Arts, and Patapsco High School and Center for the Arts, where she directed the dance magnet. She has performed and choreographed independently in the United States. She was also a partner and Operating Manager of Louie’s Bookstore Café in Baltimore, MD.
Simply Moving is Anna’s private practice where she works somatically with individuals to move creatively and efficiently in their everyday lives. She began her practice upon leaving LIMS in 1980 at the Sports Training Institute in NYC. At that time she started to integrate and utilize her studies in Bartenieff Fundamentals, Kinesiology, Ideokinesis, and Body Mind Centering. During the last thirty-five years she has worked with dancers, musicians, actors, athletes, people with post-traumatic injuries, those affected by Parkinson’s Disease, Cerebral Palsy and the elderly to bring awareness to their body patterns and movement choices.
Anna enjoys working with the very young to the very young at heart using the language of movement. Everyday brings renewed joy watching how people move as the most direct and persuasive means of communication.
Allegra Romita, MA, CMA, RYT, RSME
Allegra is co-creator of Functional Awareness®: Anatomy in Action. She is a collaborator in curriculum design for Functional Awareness for Dancers and primary curriculum designer of Functional Awareness for Yogis. Allegra Romita is a graduate from the University of Michigan with honors with a BFA in Dance and a minor in Movement Science. She received her MA in Dance Education from New York University (NYU) Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development and currently pursuing a graduate degree in motor learning and control at Teachers College, Columbia University, NYC.
Allegra’s collaborative work with Nancy Romita includes authoring their first publication with Oxford University Press entitled Functional Awareness®: Anatomy in Action for Dancers. The second publication, Functional Awareness and Yoga: An Anatomical Guide to the Body in Reflective Practice, is scheduled for release in October 2018. She has presented workshops and keynote speeches on the Functional Awareness® approach worldwide from New York City to San Diego, from Florence Italy to Hong Kong China. She has presented sessions at the American College Dance Association (ACDA), the National Dance Education Organization (NDEO) and the International Association for Dance Medicine and Science (IADMS) and a keynote speaker for the Somatics and Dance Conference Association.
Allegra is currently on the dance faculty at NYU Steinhardt. She has been a guest artist at Towson University and the University of Michigan. She has performed regionally and nationally with INSPIRIT and Amy Cova Dance. She recently participated in and presented work through Alexandra Beller’s Choreolab at Spoke the Hub Brooklyn. Since 2011, she has been performing with Sydnie L Mosley Dances in NYC and currently is the artistic visioning partner with the company.
Allegra’s passion for somatic investigation led her to certification in Laban Movement Analysis through the Laban/Bartenieff Institute of Movement Studies. She completed the Certificate in Dance Injury Rehabilitation from West Side Dance Physical Therapy in New York City. In addition she is certified in traditional Thai Massage Sacred Bodywork with Ananda Apfelbaum in NYC.
Allegra is a certified teacher in Vinyassa Flow Yoga. Allegra Romita received her 200-hour teacher training with Sid McNairy of SidYoga in Baltimore, MD and additional training Level I with Baron Baptiste. She has been teaching yoga for over 10 years and incorporates the somatic practices within this movement expression. Allegra guides her students, through anatomical awareness and freedom of thought, to a place of alignment in body and mind. Allegra teaches at Brooklyn Yoga Project and Heatwise Yoga in NYC.