A weekend of movement and writing in search of a healthful body-mind balance.
Experience the free flow of your body's intuition in nonverbal conversations.
The rich nature of the remote Oder valley provides the backdrop for a workshop aimed at enhancing the connection between our body and mind.
In the large rooftop studio of the dance retreat Ponderosa we embark on a connecting movement journey. Together we develop a language that allows us to let go and put aside our stressed everyday egos. In the here and now we focus on the sensual perception of our bodies through movement and breathing exercises. With a sharpened knowledge of our intuitive needs, we get in contact with each other and create a common movement story.
Principles of body awareness and movement tools are taught. We release inner tensions, let energies flow freely and explore the power of resistance. In doing so, we trust the language of the body and touch.
Through reflexive and creative writing segments we further investigate the physical experience and seek new movement impulses. The workshop is based on a collaborative approach that brings us together in formations consisting of group, pair and solo exercises.
8th — 10th September 2023
600€ per person
540€ per person (early bird, until 30.04)
Max 12 participants
Ponderosa, StolzenhangenView on google maps >>
2 nights in the dormitory
Single and double rooms available for an additional fee
Organic-vegan full board with
breakfast, lunch and dinner included
Bilingual: German / English. Participants may communicate in their preferred language
4.30 - 7pm
We start the retreat with a Group Movement Meditation that is focused on building trust. We use our breath, gaze and tactile sensations to connect and develop group awareness. We will create a feeling of cohesion before we learn techniques to move with others and improvise together. The session will build up a mutual sense of movement that allows us to enter a free improvisation where different energies meet and merge into a group journey. Everyone is free to respond to what is happening around or to attend their own needs.
The initial movement segment will be followed by a creative writing session where we explore our individual movement biographies.
10 am — 1.30 pm
Saturday begins with an experimental exploration of the movement possibilities of our body. We start to develop a feeling for weight by learning how to give and receive it. The transfer of weight helps to stabilize and ground ourselves.
By opening the movement into space we allow new ways to perceive the other and gain a better sense for spatial awareness.
In order to intensify the visual understanding we will implement a movement observation in combination with reflective writing exercises.
5.30 — 7 pm
After spending the free afternoon in and around the Ponderosa premises, we will return to the studio for a calm evening session. We will close our eyes and embark on a journey to our senses. Without sight and without the help of our voice, we have to focus on all senses left in order to seek a nonverbal group experience.
The movement session is followed by a creative writing impulse to allow for intentional sharing of the day’s experiences.
10 am — 1.30 pm
The second extensive morning session focuses on resistance. During the first two days we have learned to trust each other and discovered several ways to get into a collective flow of movement. The focus laid on harmony and the release of tensions.
Today we want to expand our mindset with an exploration of the potentials of resistance.
We will recognize possibilities of changing the mutual energetic flow with counter-impulses. We learn to deal with obstacles in the movement process and try to exploit the creative power of force.
This session aims to support our self-awareness and esteem. In the safe space of the studio we will learn to accept the contradictions in our emotional bandwidth and foster our resilience.
3 — 4 pm
The closing session will give space to reflect on the somatic discoveries made through the weekend.
How has our perception and interaction changed? What will we want to take back home with us?
A short writing impulse will lead to the creation of an individual movement gesture that embodies the main sentiment of our reflection. We will share our thoughts and feelings before returning to our everyday lives.
The Ponderosa is a community arts center, a place of encounter and exchange. Founded more than 20 years ago, it has developed into an alternative dance retreat with several studios and a large garden.
It is located in the village of Stolzenhagen, about an hour by train from Berlin in the Lower Oder Valley National Park. The Ponderosa thrives on the self-organized charm of a sustainable ecological community that facilitates gatherings on fair terms.
The workshop will be held bilingually (German-English). Participants may communicate in their preferred language.
The number of participants is 12 people.
The participation fee is 600 € and includes, in addition to the course, 2 nights in the dormitory and organic-vegan full board with breakfast, lunch and dinner. Please bring your own towels.
Subject to availability, there is the possibility of renting single and double rooms for an additional fee. There are also tent areas on the premises.
Along with her deep interest in the mind-body connection and holistic healing, her biggest passion is dance. Elke spent many years studying the principles of the body. After learning the theoretical aspects of movement in sport science at university, she continued her professional dance education to experience the full depth of movement.
By realising the healing effects of dance on mind and body, she developed her own approach with akzepTANZ. At the same time she qualified as a holistic healing practitioner to combine the movement practice with a psychological and somatic background.
Adrian sees writing as a process best experienced in the resonance of a group. Trained as an art historian, he shifted his focus to teaching as a second career.
He is currently studying Biographical and Creative Writing, where he explores the intersection of writing and movement. His particular focus is on the reflexive elements of writing as a tool for expanding self-awareness. Through the use of movement elements the body forms an integral part of his writing practice, which seeks to avoid a fixation on the mind.
On the retreat we will be served 3 organic and vegan meals per day. Everything is cooked fresh at Ponderosa. The meal times are the following: Breakfast at 9 am, Lunch at 1.30 pm, Dinner at 7 pm. If you have any intolerances or allergies please let us know beforehand so we can plan accordingly and find a solution.
The Ponderosa can be reached via public transport, car and bike. For the public option a train stop nearby is connected via a call bus with Stolzenhagen (prior notification needed). Beautiful bike routes through the Oder valley welcome ecological enthusiasts. Further a free public parking lot is available for vehicles in the village.
Early bird pricing ends 30th April.
540€ - Early Bird Price (normally 600€)
Pure Embodiment Package
(extra One-on-One Session, limited capacity)
620€ - Early Bird Price (normally 680€)