Sunday 1 September 2013

True to our Roots Qi Gong Workshops

I am launching my new system of spontaneous Qi Gong, "True to our Roots Qi Gong" and am looking for anyone interested in me giving workshops.

It is a discovery into our primordial self-healing system, which is directed by our entire fluid system.

The aim is to bring our awareness back to our innate self-healing abilities through re-adjusting our posture, re-familiarising ourselves with our breath, and connecting with the flow of our energy (Qi or Chi)

True to our Roots is about connecting with our primordial selves again, allowing spontaneity of movement to occur, while our mind naturally retreats and becomes the observer.

This is totally removed from forms and disciplines, and breaks through whatever boundaries are limiting us from being fluid, re-awakening our senses and reclaiming our self-power regarding our bodies' well-being.

Anyone interested please contact me on 01600 890 737, or email me at,

Masai Walking

The Doward Masai Walkers
Every Thursday I guide a group of enthusiasts in walking with body awareness, in the beautiful surroundings of our Herefordshire countryside.

I've introduced the Masai Nomadic walking technology in honour of my formative years spent in Africa.  It is a great excuse to socialise, enjoy the great outdoors, and have fun!

Who are the Masai people?

The Masai are nomadic cattle herders who live mainly in the East African Rift Valley.

Research has found that Masai Nomads have no knee, hip or back problems.  One witnesses how proud and straight their posture is with beautifully aligned bodies.  In fact most indigenous societies around the world, who walk barefoot, have well-aligned bodies.

What is Masai walking?
Masai walking trains your body in an appropriate way, from a physiological point of view, and also biomechanically engaging muscles you don't usually use, and those that support your body.

Walking barefoot encourages us to use our entire foot, from the heel, the outer edge of our feet which connects to the ground, to pushing off from our toes, encouraging our feet to become supple once more.

How we use our feet affects the whole of our body, and unfortunately footwear in general does not encourage this flexibility to occur!  Either the soles are too rigid (so toes are made redundant), or heels are too high, throwing the upper body forward and shortening the Achilles tendons.  Shoes tend to stabilize our joints moving them passively instead of engaging the muscles naturally.

When kicking off our shoes does that not feel wonderful?  How many of us have felt the benefits from walking barefoot on a sandy beach or on lush green grass? If you no longer remember when you last did this, try it now!

Another benefit of Masai Walking is improving our body shape!  Walking "tall and proud" gets your back, buttock, abdominal and thigh muscles, and your joints to work as they are designed to.

Our Doward Walkers have already felt muscles they did not know they had!  That was merely after adjusting their posture and walking slowly with new-found awareness, Masai Style!

Masai Nomadic Walking stimulates blood circulation and massages the arch of your feet. So, barefoot walking means re-alignment!  You will simply hold yourself straight again, which in turn will improve your posture and elongate your body.

Masai Nomadic walking on rough ground:-

You are probably wondering about the practicalities of walking with shoes?

As I love collecting shoes of all types (I know what it's like for "us girls"!), I would recommend for casual outdoor walking, very pliable shoes in which your toes are not made redundant, and preferably shoes without heel raises, so flat shoes (Vivo Barefoot shoes are excellent for example).

For those special times when we dress up wear your heels with renewed awareness at how you walk in them - keeping distances as short as possible, and kicking your gorgeous stilettos off as soon as is practically possible!


After having had both my hips resurfaced with metal, I re-educated my entire body in order to avoid damaging it any further with the help of Esther Gokhale's book "Eight Steps to a Painfree Back" who studied indigenous societies to re-address our bad postural habits.  Her work resonated totally with my own African upbringing, and made me understand that after years of pounding hard floors as an Aerobic Instructor without awareness of a misaligned body, which then caused the wear and tear in my hips, it was time to change!

Having scoured the country for successful treatment of the excruciating pain which I lived with for over ten years to no avail, I found freedom from pain by re-addressing my posture thanks to the Gokhale Method and also thanks to my wonderful African models who never complained of aches and pains despite all their hard manual labour.

Anyone interested in joining the Doward Masai Walkers, or wishing 1 on 1 sessions, or workshops please contact me on 01600 890 737, or email me at,

Reference:  Catherine Maillard from Doctissimo 2011 and MBT Physiotherapist Jocelyne Rolland