Contact Improv: a study in touch and consent

Yesterday, I had the opportunity to go to a contact improv lesson and jam, something I haven’t done in years. For the uninitiated, contact improvisation is a style of dance characterized by the words in its name: the dance is unchoreographed and improvisational, and the dancer strives to stay in contact with one or moreContinue reading “Contact Improv: a study in touch and consent”

Somebody Hold Me

There’s a wonderful Kickstarter coming to a close today for a book called Somebody Hold Me. Epiphany Jordan (great name, right?) and her crew in Austin have started a touch practice, allowing people who don’t have enough contact in their lives to experience non-sexual, loving, and playful touch. I’m a big fan of this, asContinue reading “Somebody Hold Me”

Hugs, but only if you want them.

More and more articles lately on consent culture and how to raise a generation of people who are secure in their own bodily autonomy, and respect others’ as well. Here’s one I liked this week: Why I Will Never Tell My Daughter to Give You a Hug. In short: forcing kids to hug and kiss orContinue reading “Hugs, but only if you want them.”

Cultivating a consent culture

I was reading Psychology Today’s recent article, The Power of No, this morning, and it got me thinking about a question that haunts alternative sexuality communities, or should. The question is this: in a world where we accept the feminist precept that rape culture exists – which needless to say, I do – how doContinue reading “Cultivating a consent culture”

Two great videos about Rubenfeld Synergy Method

Since the Fourth of July weekend is coming up, I figured I’d blog a little early and leave you all with something inspiring to take you into it. In case you haven’t seen them yet, here are two great videos put together by the Rubenfeld Synergy Training Institute. The first, What Is RSM?, was filmed at the Omega Institute whileContinue reading “Two great videos about Rubenfeld Synergy Method”

Pain and pleasure as emotions

On a recent edition of Science Friday, I encountered an interview with neuroscientist Francis McGlone, whose research into touch-sensitive nerves has changed the landscape for how science understands touch in humans. It was already known that there are what might be called fast nerves and slow nerves. The first carry sensation to the brain inContinue reading “Pain and pleasure as emotions”

Fostering consent culture – making touch safe for kids and adults

My friend and colleague Christine Kraemer wrote over at the Patheos website recently about how desperately kids need touch – not just for emotional development, but literally for biological development – and how that touch is being systematically taken away in many school environments and elsewhere. More and more, non-parent adults are not allowed toContinue reading “Fostering consent culture – making touch safe for kids and adults”

Infants are sensitive to pleasant touch

The latest from the “but we knew that, right?” department: a study showing how infants process the sensation of “pleasant” touch – and how young they learn it. Touch is critical to human development, and in fact, as my friend Christine Kraemer pointed out, most baby mammals will die without it. Much writing has beenContinue reading “Infants are sensitive to pleasant touch”

Cultivating a consent culture

I was reading Psychology Today’s recent article, The Power of No, this morning, and it got me thinking about a question that haunts alternative sexuality communities, or should. The question is this: in a world where we accept the feminist precept that rape culture exists – which needless to say, I do – how doContinue reading “Cultivating a consent culture”

The Classic Sequence: First touch at the feet

I seem to have left behind this series, describing the progression of the so-called Classic Sequence of moves in Rubenfeld Synergy, quite some time ago, and I’m not entirely sure why.  Therefore, I am taking this moment to continue it.  Please click the above link for a list of moves that I’ve written about thusContinue reading “The Classic Sequence: First touch at the feet”