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“There is a point where, in the mystery of existence, contradictions meet: where movement is not all movement and stillness is not all stillness; where the idea and the form, the within and the without, are united; where infinite becomes finite, but not.” - Rabindranath Tagore

"To meet everything and everyone through stillness instead of mental noise is the greatest gift you can offer to the universe."
- Eckhart Tolle

Embodied Mindfulness: A Somatic-Expressive Approach to Stillness

“Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.” –Viktor Frankl

At the stillpoint of the turning world, there the dance is.
And without the point
that stillpoint
there would be no dance
and there is only the dance.  - T.S. Eliot

Embodying mindfulness, and being mindfully embodied, is a huge challenge in modern times. With so much literal (and metaphorical noise) overwhelming our senses, cluttering our psyches, and degrading our attention, it is difficult to access the spacious place of the still point. Contemporary research has given us so many good reasons to practice mindfulness, and yet for many, the practice of stillness remains challenging, frustrating - and even overwhelming.

Embodied Mindfulness: A Somatic-Expressive Approach to Stillness is an easily repeatable daily somatic sitting practice designed for the modern body/mind. These embodied practices highlight stillness, using the focused somatic activities of breath, vocalization, contact, and movement to occupy the mind so the body can settle.

I originally developed this work for dancers and movement artists who found stillness excruciating. Over time, I realized discomfort with stillness was also prevalent among people with a history of trauma and related disorders. Traditional mindfulness techniques were somatically experienced by many as oppressive and stifling, amplifying the “freeze response” and making the body/mind even more agitated and numb.

Starting with attention to the comfort of the body in sitting, and collaborating with our physiology through somatic action, is a direct path for relaxing into our interior and centering our mind. We can be with ourselves generously, cultivate more ease and patience, and build the muscle of equanimity over time.

Embodied Mindfulness is a distillation of over four decades of research and practice with meditation, somatic inquiry and movement, and has been taught for the past 20 years to diverse audiences worldwide and online. The Embodied Mindfulness template is currently used by people ages 20-85 at all levels of physical conditioning.

Yoga, dance and movement teachers of all types, therapists, educators and life coaches, as well as people seeking more calm and ease in their lives, can benefit from this integrative approach to the body and its expression of lively stillness.

  • Read this article for a theoretical overview of Embodied Mindfulness and its origins

  • Attend an Embodied Mindfulness Online weekly class - information here
  • Pursue Embodied Mindfulness Leadership Certification Online - Training information here
  • Find Certified Embodied Mindfulness practitioners HERE

Jamie McHugh


"We have a rich cross-cultural legacy of both contemplative and expressive practices at our disposal. How do we draw upon and update them to meet the conditions of the modern mind living in an industrialized body within an urban environment?" -Jamie