Faculty

Learn with teachers who love what they do.
You are the reason we are here. With a combined experience of over 75 years we truly care about your learning.

The Soma Institute is a delightful place to learn and develop oneself.  I feel very lucky to have learned Soma from these amazingly talented educators.
A.W.  —Class of 2016

 


JESSE GUERRERO, LMT, Advanced Soma Practitioner: ASP – has been in private practice since 2002. He began his connection with Soma Structural Integration when he received the Soma Series at the age of eight. Shortly thereafter, his Aunt, Karen Bolesky, took over the Soma Institute of Neuromuscular Integration®. He credits this work for helping him overcome severe asthma and rehabilitating multiple sport injuries and traumas. Through these experiences and years of watching students’ positive evolution, he was inspired to gain his SNI® certification.

He has taught continuing education classes in Slovenia, Croatia, Oregon and Washington to healthcare professionals and aspiring structural integrators. He is fascinated by all movement arts and has studied Somatics, 5-Rhythms, yoga, pilates, Gyrokinesis, skateboarding, Aikido and Laban/Bartenieff fundamentals. He infuses this knowledge into every aspect of his teaching. He is a core faculty member at the Soma Institute.

When Jesse is not teaching or running his practice he can usually be found playing with his daughter, roaming the landscape on a skate or snowboard or rummaging in the garden.

“I want my students to find themselves in this work, in their body, in their own essence. Structural Integration has to become your own expression, so you not only gain knowledge, but you awaken your own unique brilliance. From this place a student can create a practice with confidence and authenticity. Supporting the embodiment of an uplifting and joyous profession is more than my passion, it is my ethos.”

www.risingbody.com


KELSI GISWOLD, BFA, LMT, Advanced Soma Practitioner: ASP – has been practicing Soma Structural Integration since 2008 in Wallingford—Seattle and Langley—Whidbey Island, Washington. Before becoming a Soma practitioner she received her Bachelor of Fine Arts and freelanced as a graphic designer. Kelsi views the body with sensitivity and wonder and a profound appreciation for the powerful union of the mind, body and spirit. She encourages her clients and students to be playfully engaged in their lives by being fully present in their bodies.

Through her active lifestyle Kelsi continually finds joy in physical expression and awareness— whether running, hiking, climbing, playing in her garden, skiing, traveling or mothering her daughter. She was a varsity rower in college, and has hiked, traveled, farmed and worked in South America, Europe, India, Japan and Antarctica.

A lifelong learner, Kelsi is constantly attending continuing education courses to deepen her understanding of the human body, mind and spirit. She believes that curiosity and lifelong learning are the fuels of a creative and fulfilling life.

“My desire is to empower my students to deeply trust themselves, bringing their wholeness and presence to the table. I delight in encouraging students to be creative, compassionate and critical thinkers who value continual learning.”

www.kgiswold.net


ALEX GOLDSTEIN, LMT, Advanced Soma Practitioner: ASP – Alex has been in private practice in Seattle since 2015 and came to Soma with a background in chemistry, software development, business management, and movement arts.  Movement has always been a major element in Alex’s life, most recently as a professional dancer and instructor of circus/aerial arts and through her current Certification as a Franklin Method Educator.  Movement provides balance, expression and joy, and Alex sees Soma as a means for facilitating movement in the lives of others. Whether a client is looking for pain relief, improved mobility/athletic performance, or greater body awareness, Alex’s goal is to partner with them in achieving those results.    

Teaching at the Soma Institute is also a partnership with the students and Alex strives to create an environment that is supportive and collaborative, providing opportunity for students to maximize their potential through the learning process.  With a focus on Anatomy, Physiology and Kinesiology, Alex’s goal is to have students leave the training with a sense of curiosity about the container we live in every day — our body! — and go forth with a desire to keep learning as they settle into their practice.

“A&P can be A LOT! But there is so much wonder and excitement in learning about how we are put together and how it all works.  My hope is for the students to take that knowledge and carry forward the joy of discovery so they can support themselves, and their clients, in being empowered, embodied, and welcoming of change.”

www.ensobodywork.com


KIMBERLY LORTON, LMT, Advanced Soma Practitioner: ASP – Kimberly’s love of anatomy and physiology started via an accelerated program for observing cadaver dissections in HS, continued through being a D1 scholarship swimmer, and bloomed into an enthusiasm for pathology via many different opportunities to help people with different physical beings, abilities and goals.

She completed a double BS degree as well as her MA at UW, is a certified POSE running coach, and a certified L1 CrossFit coach. Additionally, she recently completed a two-year program in wild medicinal plants and hopes to someday be a Registered Herbalist. She has completed advanced trainings in breathwork, cranio-facial harmony, and advanced pelvic floor work.

She brings her athleticism, a level of empathy that only a lifetime of challenges and recoveries can impart, intuitive wisdom, and academic rigor to her teaching at the soma institute and to her clients.

“There are so many avenues of being and of healing; one of my goals is to help individuals find balance and a communicative and compassionate relationship with their body.
As a teacher helping students gain the confidence to trust themselves is a wonderful journey; to explore their edges in order meet challenges and opportunities for growth.”


VANESSA WOOD, BFA, LMT, Soma Practitioner, Certified Advanced Equine Natural Movement Practitioner – Vanessa has worked in Structural Integration since 2007. First with equines, soon adding in canines and other four-leggeds. She then found her way to The Soma Institute to work with people.

As a practitioner and teacher, she loves the transformation and happiness Structural Integration brings to humans and animals alike.


Denise Foster Scott

DENISE FOSTER-SCOTT, LMT, Advanced Soma Practitioner: ASP – Seeking a meaningful career, left the world of aviation to receive her training as a Structural Integrator at the Soma Institute of Neuromuscular Integration® in 2007.  Shortly after graduation, she began a yearlong internship with Karen Bolesky in which she explored client relationships and delved into the heart of structural work.  Denise has a deep fascination about how our individual facets (emotional, spiritual, intellectual) affect the structure of the body and how to use these connections in ourselves to create spaciousness and openness within.  She has special interest in anatomy and structure and pays close attention to the relationship between form and function in her work with clients and students. Denise is certified by the Certification Board for Structural IntegrationSM and has devoted many volunteer hours to the International Association of Structural Integration®.  She has published several case studies about structural integration.

Denise teaches Soma Advanced Trainings and continuing education courses.

I want the students to leave with a tremendous sense of confidence that their work will create profound changes in the bodies and lives around them.  Soma Neuromuscular Integration® opens the door to awareness, creating choices and the potential for change.  It is my wish that the students take this opportunity to shed their self-imposed limitations that mask actuality.  This way they are able to recognize and encourage these same changes in others.”

www.somavitality.com


KarenBoleskySM2KAREN L. BOLESKY M.A., L.M.H.C., L.M.T., LAMP, Advanced Soma Practitioner:

March 9, 1941 – February 12, 2023

Karen was the Director of the Soma Institute of Neuromuscular Integration® and worked with Structural Integration for over 30 years. She was a psychotherapist, and licensed Mental Health Counselor from 1975 to 2019 with a broad scope of psychological and somatic training. In 1986 she became a practitioner and instructor of Soma Neuromuscular Integration® and owned the Soma Institute of Neuromuscular Integration® since 1986. Part sage, witchdoctor and rascal, she enjoyed  working the farm that she has created. Rural Washington provided much insight into the rhythms of life and nature which she shared wisely with much tenacity and joy.

She studied Gestalt therapy with the Polsters, grief therapy in death and dying with Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, M.D., and drawing interpretation with Gregg M. Furth, Ph.D. Her B.A. was in Fine Art and she used drawing interpretation as a tool to enhance personal development. She learned nutrition and business practices by owning health food stores. Her powerful work with her clients and students, tapping their personal creativity and capacity to manifest their vision and wisdom, was aided by her own synthesis of the creative process and knowledge of somatic education.

Karen wrote a book entitled: Bony Landmarks-Making Somatic Connections

She will be missed, but her life’s work lives on through the many students she taught.

“I want the student to leave with a true and deep sense of their own self, to live the work they are providing, to have a powerful, experiential and academic knowledge of Soma to take forth as a creative act.”