Cate's Healing Scoliosis and Art Story:
At the age of 14, I proclaimed to my parents I wanted to be an actor and I set about auditioning at the local community arts center. Simultaneously we discovered my spine was diverting from its straight path, the early beginnings of S-curve scoliosis. Since I had always been a mover/dancer (ballet and modern), I begin stretching on the living room floor constantly and made up exercises to counteract the developing pain. I refused to allow a cast or Herrington rod, amazingly, my parents let me handle it.
I arrived in NYC after college graduation and two years post- grad studying acting in London, I auditioned for 5 years with an agent but was not artistically fulfilled. I turned to writing poetry and then painting showed up, then someone introduced me to Contact Improvisation(dancing) and I performed at downtown venues. (I continue to show work at Dixon Place.) I became licensed in massage therapy in 1991 which afforded a flexible schedule for continuing my arts and delving deeply into healing my spine and heart. The healing and art work was intertwined and interdependent, for example, a painting I did based on an image that came to me while receiving bodywork, became the cover of my first published collection of poetry, Separation and Return. I came to uncover, release and unwind the deep emotional pain that was stored in the tissues through several kinds of healers and somato-emotional work. In pursuit of my own healing gave me many insights and compassion into working with others, ‘healer heal thyself’.
By giving up the putting on the masks of character, my choice for living in a body with less pain, had me deconstructing my own masks! AdditionalIy I was certified in: Cranio-Sacral®, Body-Mind Centering®, Reiki, Pilates, Yoga and Deep Memory Process®; diversifying my bodywork and movement practices in tandem with my personal healing process.
After 23 years of practicing massage and added modalities, I was burnt out. My forearms ached, my wrists were strained, I was tired of the extra laundry, I was letting go of a lot of old stuff. So, I took care of my aging dog, sat quietly a lot and asked myself what am I going to do next?
One night, while I was online, I found myself typing in Alexander Technique teacher trainings; there was my answer! I audited the class at ACAT the following week and the rest, as they say is her-story. Two years later, After a three-year training of 1600 hours of Alexander work by senior teachers, my spine is now about 1° from center in the thoracic and completely straight in the lumbar! What is considered a 'normal' spine by all accounts. I am living proof it is possible to heal the curves.
In the course of my meditations over the years, I came to understand the source of my spinal distortion and took full responsibility for reacting the way I did in order to survive my tumultuous family dynamic. I released those internal triggers for 33 years and my bodymind responded in the natural direction of health!
Cate's book of Poetry: Separation and Return $15 plus shipping
"Cate McNider's Separation and Return is a collection of missives from the buried self in search of expression and communication to the conscious mind...Here is a unique new poetic voice that is straightforward in tone, emotionally honest in expression, perceptive, unsentimental, and very powerful."
My learning about the bodymind has come through a wide range and depth of studies, activities and many years of experience, capped off by the three year teacher certification training of the Alexander Technique. If there's a single process that teaches someone to facilitate healthful change through touch and movement training, in my cumulative experience of many modalities, it's the Alexander Technique. From the classroom and self study to the stage and inner screen, every phase of my life has in-formed my integration and coordination. The right use of my movement is transmitted to the student's whole self through their head/neck/back relationship, assisted by my hands-on thinking.
My experience includes (certifications available upon request):
It takes an attitude of openness and dedication to clean the cluttered desktop that our minds and bodies become.
I facilitate the clearing of pain producing habits, which redirects your attention, the blocked energy releases and freedom is there waiting! Each moment, our true potential is revealed and renewed.
SPINE AND SPIRIT WORKSHOP: I really liked the connection to energy as we began to move! The whole experience was very uplifting! I really absorbed a lot from what we did and really look forward to incorporating this technique into my practice. I look forward to going to another workshop of yours in the near future.
~MG, NYC, 2018
SPINE AND SPIRIT WORKSHOP: It's one of the best workshops I've ever taken and at the exact right time. Thank you so much for sharing your soulful life's work, it changed my life. ~ES, NYC, 2018
Ever since I began my Alexander training with Cate, I trust my body more and am overall more relaxed and more present. I feel like a new chapter is unfolding. I'm finally able to begin unravelling the tension in my body. I just love it and am so thankful I found her. ~J. Z., NYC, 2017
Cate has helped me to be more aware of and spacious with my holding patterns. After working with her, my body became more relaxed and free.
I highly recommend her!! ~ L.S., NYC, 2017
The space Cate created was calming, relaxing and helped me to “feel” my movements. I am now more aware of the best positioning of my limbs and how my movements are interrelated. ~H.P., NYC 2017
I'm in such a good place now. Compared to when I first found Cate, I feel like a totally different person. And my shoulder is healed thanks to her. I will definitely stay in touch. Thanks so much Cate! ~J.Z., NYC 2017
Bodywork / Healing:
Cate’s extensive experience, warmth and sense of humor helped me to open places in myself that I didn’t know existed! Who knew that emotion gets stored in the tissues and creates such havoc in one’s physical state over time?! I didn’t! She gently guided me in the direction of more connection to myself that I was afraid of, yet wanting to get past. It was difficult at times, but releasing the energy, the pain was gone, I mean gone, leaving me feeling more relaxed and like myself! There’s more work to be done of course, but now I know the power is in me to let go. Thank you. -HS, NYC, Oct. 2009
I really enjoyed your class and instruction. Even though I had made it to only 1 class, you had a great impact on my approach to yoga. Thank you.
- M.O, Westchester, NY, July 2009
The black curved line indicates where my spine was going at 14 yrs old, the white, where it is after 3 years of Alexander teacher training.
The [Bone-Art]workshop was nicely put together; the presentation of material, ‘lie down’, the drawing and movement. I enjoyed each segment by itself, but at the end when I leave I feel all nice and energized and happy! This course ignited my passion and it makes me feel a part of myself. And if it wasn’t for you giving this course, I wouldn’t have come to this conclusion. Really thank you very much. ~Faisal Al-Matrouk, NYC, 2017
Nothing grounds my nervous system like an Alexander Technique lesson with Cate. I leave profoundly re-balanced. ~L.W. NYC, 2016
Some past and present testimonials...
Deep Memory Process®:
I got more out of my two hour Deep Memory Process session with Cate, than I did in five years of talk therapy! It answered things I could not get to any other way. Thank you!
- KS, NYC, 2012
I experienced a unique healing through Cate's gifted work. The powerful exploration of a past life has helped me to identify some of the traumatic events that have affected my health and emotional state of being. After our 1 1/2 hour session, I was in awe of what had transpired, the memories that surfaced, and the possible explanations of what is happening in my body today. Something she assisted me in exploring has now flooded my present awareness. I am releasing, growing lighter and I truly feel this; Cate holds a special gift, which allows me to benefit from her process. I can't tell you exactly what that process is; I believe it to be unique to each individual. What I have carried through lifetimes affecting my present day issues is gently releasing. Thank you Cate!!
~ CV, NYC, 2011
The Listening Body®since 1991
Cate McNider - Alexander Technique Teacher
AmSAT nationally certified & insured
Where Thinking Creates Moving Change