my background in health and healing:
Art began his study of health and healing in Philadelphia where he studied Exercise Physiology and Health Science at Temple University. At that time he also became certified in Therapeutic Touch, a form of subtle energy work, and Reflexology for the hands and feet.
After moving to Washington state, he attended the SOMA Institute for Neuromuscular Integration. There he studied with Marcia Nolte and Karen Bolesky, two excellent and highly regarded teachers of structural bodywork. He graduated from their program and the Alexander School for Natural Therapeutics in 1989 and received his license to practice bodywork in 1990.
He has since maintained a busy practice for 28 years. During this time he has studied Jin Shin Jyutsu with master practitioner/teacher Pam Fry, RN. Jin Shin is a form of light touch acupressure which uses pulse reading and subtle energy techniques. It is deeply relaxing and very effective for both acute and chronic conditions. Art has also studied St. John's Neuromuscular Therapy and regularly incorporates these techniques when working with clients recovering from injuries or post-operative myofascial issues.
More recently, Art received his certifications in Transpersonal Hypnotherapy from Jack Elias in Seattle and Theta Healing from Mary Schael in La Conner. He now offers sessions in these effective and enjoyable modalities as well.
my Internal Arts Background:
I was introduced to the internal arts through the study of simple breathing meditation during my high school years. Through an extensive study of Taekwondo and later Wing Chun, I eventually discovered qigong, Tai Chi Chuan, and other internal approaches to martial art and self-cultivation. My primary teachers include Dan Riggs, Sam Masich, Chantal Fafard, and Diane Kehoe.
About My Teachers
I have been blessed with many extraordinary teachers. I am deeply grateful for each one.
I began my study of Taijiquan and qigong in Bellingham, Wa with my first instructor Dani Riggs. Dani has been teaching Taiji since 1984 and is a highly accomplished student of Master Fong Ha. One of the many practical and valuable lessons I learned from Dani, was to approach the art of Taiji with a focused mind and a light heart. For me, this remains one of Taiji’s greatest gifts and deepest lessons. He currently lives in Maui and can be reaches at www.daniriggs.com.
I have received the majority of my Taiji education from my teacher Sam Masich. I consider him my main influence in the art and the majority of what I teach comes from time spent with him and his students. I had the good fortune to meet Sam after I had already been practicing Taiji and qigong for a number of years and his instruction deepened my understanding in many unexpected and enjoyable ways.
Sam is a treasure in the internal arts community having contributed uncommonly clear analysis of core principles and practice as well as demonstrating those principles in exceptional expressions of practical skill. One of the most useful aspects of his teaching is a concept he calls “connective material”. Through connective work he shows how the various aspects of training are built upon, supported by, and expand upon each other. This creates an approach to Taijiquan that is genuinely wholistic, intelligent, and thoroughly beneficial as a means of self cultivation. He can be reached from his website at www.sammasich.com.
Chantal is another excellent practitioner and an articulate, patient teacher. She introduced me to Taiji saber and helped me a lot with my understanding of bare hand form and proper coordination. She is also a dedicated student of hatha yoga. She is seen here practicing a two person sword form with Sam.
I highly recommend working with her if you get the chance.
I consider Diane a Taiji purist in the best sense of the word. Her attention to detailed articulation of movement and proper adherence to Taiji principles is always an inspiration.
Very active in the Taiji community as a teacher and judge in competitions, Diane has contributed much to the art and to her students. My form and tuishou have improved significantly from time spent with her. Here she is practicing pushing hands with Michael Blackburn, one of my good training buddies.