My name is Rachel and I am a fitness legume (not a nut), professional musician, and mother living in Santa Barbara, CA. My passion is helping people learn to learn because I believe wholeheartedly that learning is a skill. The better we are at learning, the more quickly we can adapt to new challenges and succeed at whatever we work towards.
At the age of 9, I picked up my first viola and from that point on I was hooked. I pursued music all the way through to a Doctorate degree which I finished in 2013. But along the way, I encountered my share of challenges. When I was 15, I experienced my first playing-related Repetitive Stress Injury. For the next 15 years, I struggled to maintain a performance career while experiencing worse and worse symptoms.
I saw countless specialists, physicians, physical therapists, chiropractors, Rolfers, and acupuncturists. You name the health profession, chances are I consulted with them. None of them could help me because none would take the time to truly understand my position. In 2009, I found CrossFit and things changed for me. In my youth, I studied ballet and I spent time in the gym. But up until finding CrossFit, I had never understood how exercise could help me play better. CrossFit made me stronger, increased my stamina, and gave me hope. This was an eye-opening moment for me though it was nowhere near the end of my journey.
After finishing my Doctorate, I suffered a crisis of purpose. I had just completed a huge hurdle, but didn’t want to continue in academia. I was burned out and no longer interested in performing. I also realized that I had not even begun to scratch the surface of beginning to heal my playing injuries. I redirected my learning super powers towards fitness by getting my first CrossFit certification. I started my first class called Athletic Development for Musicians (pictured right), and fell in love with coaching.
From there, I dove into the fitness world learning from as many professionals and organizations as I could. I studied Foundation Training and trained with Ido Portal’s online program. I turned my attention to gymnastics, boxing, SFG kettlebell training, Aikido, and any other classes or seminars I could join. The more I fell into the rabbit hole of movement modalities, the more I realized I was looking for something to connect it all together.
Enter the Feldenkrais Method®
I completed my FM Practitioner Training in the fall of 2018. Through the rigorous 4 year program, I realized that self-care and self-awareness are the most important parts of healing and thriving. It may seem obvious or redundant, but they are much easier talked about than done. Without care and awareness, you will always encounter pain and dysfunction. To read more about the Feldenkrais Method®, start here.
In 2016, I had my son and this opened up to me a whole new realm of bodywork and fitness that I had previously only read about. Even before pregnancy, I had been fascinated with the pelvic floor and diaphragmatic system, but experiencing the process of pregnancy and birth has helped me understand so much more. Motherhood has also made me so much more aware of the hardships mothers today face: too much judgement and not enough support. I have been following the work of Julie Wiebe, Jessie Mundell, Lynn Schulte, and many other women revolutionizing how we work with prenatal and postpartum women. Mothers have been overlooked by the medical and fitness communities. I want to see that change.
Education and Credentials
- Doctor of Musical Arts, UC Santa Barbara
- Guild Certified Feldenkrais Practitioner
- CrossFit Level 2 Trainer
- USA Weightlifting Level 1
- Foundation Training
- American Red Cross CPR/AED/First Aid – Adult and Pediatric
- The Brand X Method
Summing It All Up
My main goal is to help people learn. Learn about themselves, humanity, the world, movement, science, history, evolution, communication, music, you name it! I am a perpetual student and firmly believe that the more we know about a wide range of topics the closer we get to understanding ourselves and each other. Every obstacle is only an obstacle if we don’t learn from it. Please look around my site to see how I can best assist you and don’t hesitate to contact me!