Amy Laithwaite was born in Vancouver, Canada. Her interest in the human body started early with a fervent passion for dance. She received her formative dance training at the Coquitlam School of Ballet, Vancouver’s Arts Umbrella, and the Royal Winnipeg Ballet. Amy then moved to Toronto to attend the National Ballet School. At the NBS Amy trained with such respected teachers as Glenn Gilmore, Mavis Staines, Deborah Bowes and Sorella Englund; and received her Cecchetti Associate Diploma and her three year Diploma from the NBS. Amy is an active member of the dance arts community in Vancouver.
Amy discovered Fascial Stretch Therapy in 2012. As a Fascial Stretch Therapist (FST) Amy draws parallels from her work with dancers to her work with her stretch clients. In conjunction with the assisted stretching that forms the base of FST, Amy uses her lifetime of movement assessment to help her clients find their own balance point. Amy also studies and teaches techniques from renowned movement specialist Irene Dowd (currently on staff at Juilliard). These ‘Dowd Techniques’ help clients integrate the new range gained from FST. Both proprioceptively and practically new range of motion needs to be understood, strengthened and practiced in order to maintain it. Amy continues to develop her practice. Most recently she became certified in PR (Postural Repositioning). These techniques further re-enforce FST by helping clients to build strength and understanding in healthy movement pathways and positions.
An FST session is comprised of three basic elements. First we will assess posture and movement, identifying restrictions. Next, clients indulge in some deep breathing and relaxation techniques while being moved through stretches designed to target their specific restrictions. Lastly, clients are carefully taught one or two simple ‘repositioning’ exercises to do at home, which will help re-enforce and progress our work on the table.
A commonly asked question: Is it painful?
No! Stretches are most effective when the body feels safe and comfortable. Experiencing pain excites the nervous system and puts you ‘on guard’. While some stretches definitely become intense, the level of sensation is kept respectfully within your comfort zone. FST feels fantastic.