Body-Mind Centering®

'Body-Mind Centering is an ongoing, experiential journey into the alive and changing territory of the body. The explorer is the mind — our thoughts, feelings, energy, soul, and spirit. Through this journey we are led to an understanding of how the mind is expressed through the body in movement.'
B. Bainbridge Cohen

Where are the origins of BMC®?

Body-Mind Centering® (BMCtm) was developed by the former occupational therapist and dance teacher Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen at the start of the 1970’s in America. During her therapy and dance work the people coming to her for help with both physical and psychological problems were making remarkable recoveries. It was her desire to understand and communicate to others this natural ability, "to perceive and to help people help themselves" that led her into her research.
This desire to learn led her to train as a neurodevelopmental therapist with the Bobaths in England, working with children with severe brain dysfunction. She also studied neuromuscular re-education with Clark and Bernard, Katsugen Undo (the art of training the nervous system) with Haruchi Noguchi in Japan, Laban Movement Analysis and Bartenieff Fundamentals with Irmgard Bartenieff, and dance therapy with Marian Chase. Her studies have been deepened through a wide range of movement and mind practices including yoga, meditation, vocal work, martial arts, and craniosacral therapy. All her studies and research with students and clients led her to develop her own approach:
Body-Mind Centering (more: Hartley, 1989, p.xxiv).

Body-Mind Centering is a saved trademark which is only taught by licensed teacher of the school of BMC. As it is an essential part of Integrative-Bodywork and Movement Therapy here is a short overview about it:
Body-Mind Centering is a physical, somatic based way by which students are taught to get to know their body through strenghtening a fine awareness for all different bodysystems as bones, organs, muscles, connective tissue, fluids, glants. As a student you learn how to approach to your own body and itsīpotentials, often by playful self-exploration as well as by detailed anatomical and physiological information. This embodied knowledge can lead to more ease and balance in using the body in all day life.
A second big branch of Body-Mind Centering is to revive early baby movement patterns - even movements each human being does undergo in the womb of their mother. As movements which are skipped in the personal development can lead to misalignment, pain or special behavior, a repeated practicing of the skipped pattern in any later age can create new nerve pathways to our brain and by this influence movement, alignment, emotions and behavior in an amazing way. Through these early developmental movements it is possible to connect to areas and deep layers in the brain which are difficult to be reached mentally or verbally.

Further reading
  • Linda Hartley: Wisdom of the Body Moving, Berkeley, 1989
  • Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen: Sensing, Feeling, and Action, The Experiential Anatomy of Body-Mind Centering, Northampton, 1993
  • Deane Juhan: Job´s Body, New York, 1987