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Befriending your Body

A trauma-sensitive movement practice to calm, empower and enliven

4 weeks

Rediscover the healing power of your body and mind

Four weeks | 1 hour | live online  

What is this course about?

These sessions offer a special kind of movement practice designed to be safe and supportive through actively regulating and toning the nervous system. We will lead you through a trauma-sensitive therapeutic movement practice that includes gentle movements and postures.

Why is movement important in mental health?

Deliberate movement practice with awareness cultivates a more present and steady state of mind.  It is now being recognised as an integral part of healing and recovery for those who have experienced traumatic stress.  This short course draws on the ground-breaking research into Trauma Sensitive Yoga, by the Trauma and Embodiment Centre, Boston USA

Who can enrol?

You can enrol in this short course, whether or not you have participated in a foundation course of  Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program.  This short course may inspire you to dive more deeply into the exploration of your inner life that MSBR provides,

What you will need
  • a mat of some kind, and some pillows
  • loose comfortable clothing
  • an upright chair 
  • an internet connection and the ability to join a Zoom class. 

Do be in touch if you need help with this.

Pricing and Scholarship places
  • Standard Rate $88 
  • And we are delighted to offer discounted places for those who need  financial support to come along.  

If you have access to some financial security: through income, assets (savings, shares, property) and/or superannuation income we ask you to pay the full fee (or do a payment plan) as we need your support! 

If you are in financial need: unemployed, on a disability, have an illness, or are a student (with no support from parents) or have other financially stressful circumstances please be in touch to get a scholarship place.

Apply for a Scholarship

What participants have said about a trauma-sensitive movement practice
  • “It sometimes feels like my brain is using a map of my body from back when I was eight and not the one from now. Every time after I go to yoga class I feel better - more presence, more confidence, more secure in my body.”
  • “Just inhabiting my own skin is a major step forward. It allows me to be in my life now….. like be attentive as I'm driving, to be present with my family, like in lots of different ways. Things feel more connected. I'm more real. I feel less like I have to put one face on for the outside world and that's not really who I am. My not being able to get into my own skin was something that I did early on just to survive, and I just carried it forward. And now ... I can recognize I don't need to do that.  The okayness is from within.”
  • “Sometimes when I felt triggered, it was like somebody else used this body and it doesn't feel good, and I will never feel good. And now I can stretch and feel good. That can be really helpful…..instead of feeling like my mind and body are aliens to each other.  Who would have thought that possible? I feel like I have more ownership of my body and feel more of a part of it.” 

       (Rhodes, 2015)

"Sometimes quieting our minds helps us to quiet our bodies; sometimes we must quiet our bodies first before we can find the way to a really quiet mind.   Each individual must judge for herself as to the best way of reaching the quiet."

Annie Payson Call, from Nerves and Common Sense (1909)


Regulate and tone the nervous system


Cultivate a more present and steady state of mind


Feel stronger and more flexible

Course Locations

Live Online

Register Here



Di Shaw

Grad. Dip. Sustainability Studies, GAICD

Di Shaw - Mindfulness teacher - Melbourne, VicDi has long been curious about neuroplasticity and our capacity for change. Her personal mindfulness practice has included Feldenkrais awareness through movement for over thirty years and mindfulness meditation for over thirteen years, including a number of Silent Insight Meditation retreats. She trained as an MBSR teacher with Openground in Melbourne in 2007.  She completed her Professional Feldenkrais Training in London in 1991. Di is an experienced facilitator and has engaged diverse and remote communities across Australia in dialogue and cultural and strategic planning to assist their self-agency and improve their quality of life. Di is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. She holds a Post Graduate Degree in Sustainability.

Amara Saraswati

Amara began practicing mindfulness yoga and meditation in 1977. On noticing how effective the practices were in supporting her physical, mental and emotional wellbeing, and with a heartfelt longing to be able to support others, she immersed herself in study and practice. From 1987-2008 she was manager and senior teacher at the Manly Yoga and Meditation centre, a not for profit organisation. During her 35 years of teaching experience she has taught mindfulness yoga and meditation in private consultation, schools, work places, community groups, retreat centres and to inpatients at both Manly and Royal North Shore Hospital drug and alcohol rehabilitation units. From 2017-2018 she taught 4 classes a week to inpatients in the acute mental health wards at Manly Hospital.

Caroline Friend

Programs Coordinator for Openground, BA, Level 2 Member Yoga Australia

As well as working as Openground's Programs Coordinator, Caroline has been teaching yoga since 2017.

Caroline is extremely interested in how physical yoga practice combined with a regular meditation practice can improve mental and physical health and wellbeing. 

Having completed over 800 hours Yoga Teacher Training, Caroline offers a vinyasa style of yoga combining energised flow sequences and held poses to strengthen and lengthen the body, while focusing on awareness of breath, as well as Yin yoga which is a more meditative style of yoga where poses are held for up to five minutes working on lengthening the connective tissues and joints of the body. In 2020, Caroline also completed Level I Teacher Training with Mindfulness Training Institute.