Joseph Heller, creator of Hellerwork Structural Integration

Joseph Heller, creator of Hellerwork Structural Integration

          Joseph Heller, creator of Hellerwork Structural Integration passed from this life two weeks ago. His training in 1984 was 1500 hours of Bodywork, Dialogue and Movement education.  The school was at Westerbeke Ranch in Sonoma California. We were 22 students and 5 or 6 instructors including Joseph. His teaching methods were state of the art.

 For Anatomy he brought out long sleeved white leotards.  He had us pair up with magic markers and anatomy books. All day, while listening to rock and roll music, we painted different bones, muscles, systems and taught each other at the same time.

            He used “Super Learning” techniques where we would sit with our heads down, listening to music and he would project phrases or pictures of material we needed to learn. He would signal us to quickly sit-up, look at the projected picture for a couple of seconds and then drop our heads down again. Much like the way we read street signs and remember them so well.

            To learn about gravity he taught us to rock climb with ropes and helmuts.

            To share with other people he had us go out into Sonoma and recruit volunteers from the strangers in the community. We talked with waiters, waitresses, store clerks, people in the park, any one that would talk with us.

            For our final exam we had to do a session with any member of our immediate family. My Mother had no idea what I had gotten into. She learned.

            Joseph was a Cal Tech trained aerospace engineer working at the Jet Propulsion Lab in Pasadena when he met Dr. Ida Rolf and began learning her work. When he started his own school he added dialogue to her process of Rolfing.             

            He taught me how to speak and listen for feelings as we worked with people.

            He taught us how to touch and be touched.

            I have had over 5,000 hours of additional training as a Doctor since Hellerwork and I still call myself a Hellerwork Practitioner because of the sensitivity I learned.

            I loved him, loved his teaching and will miss him. His work lives on in the thousands of people his work has touched.
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