There’s a permanence in this work, Structural Integration, that you do not get with going to a traditional feel-good massage. With massage you feel good after you leave for maybe ½ hour ..then two days later you think “I need another one.” This method has a possibility for a permanent change. My grandfather and my aunt both, as they got older, had hunched backs. They were old people that creeped along and they had to tilt their head up to look at you. They lost 5 inches in height. There was this big hump in their back. Out of my extended family I was the one who had inherited that hunched back trait and I said, “Oh my god, I’m going to be one of those people!” who doesn’t see you until they sit down because they look at the ground all the time. The hump in my back was continuing to grow. I could see that this was my future.
During the Structural Integration series of bodywork I could see that the hump was diminishing, I saw the potential for another outcome. And if there is a hump in my future it’s not going to be nearly as soon as I thought it was. My work with ZoyaMarie has changed the anticipated results of a old person’s “hump”. I am actually taller now than I was before I started the KMI series.
I definitely don’t have a hump like I did before the series. My family has noticed that, and they don’t notice anything. I shaved off my mustache after 30 years, and half the people didn’t notice that, but they did notice that I was taller, or that I wasn’t hunching like I used to.
Robert Finston, CPA
MELT helps me focus and relax. I always walk away feeling more flexibility and mobility. ZoyaMarie is a fantastic teacher who really understands body mechanics and how connective tissue and the nervous system impact physical and emotional wellbeing. Because of this knowledge, she is an excellent guide through the MELT process while encouraging us to MELT on our own at home.
Toni Holliday, Financial Organizer
Zoya Marie is a wonderful and knowledgeable teacher who has helped me with body imaging, sensory perception, and pain relief through her MELT classes, Franklin Method work and Structural Integration. Being in the medical profession, I have some knowledge of anatomy, but I have learned so much on the integration of mind/body connections from Zoya Marie. This has helped -not only in my daily life, but also for sharing with my patients.
Janet Coyne, MD Pediatrics, Swimmer
ZoyaMarie has been a wonderful companion for many years. She applies her great knowledge of anatomy to soothe every muscle (and whatever else is aching), and adds aromatherapy. She massages my ankles down to normal size, works on my posture and strengthening my legs and back. She is responsible for my walking as well as I do today and for getting out of bed smoothly..
Wendy Buchen, Senior/Post Stroke
I just came from a 9:30 Pilates class at the YMCA usually conducted by ZoyaMarie Jilbere. That morning, however, a substitute had filled in for her. It was quite a contrast!
I thoroughly enjoy ZoyaMarie’s class especially due to the educational approach and the information she shares regarding how the body functions i.e. the core and limbs in relationship to each other as well as the effect on the internal organs. She emphasizes the importance of correct performance in order to avoid injury. Her teaching approach to body movement is extremely important. As with anything in life, exercise should not be carried out in a mindless rote fashion if one is to derive maximum benefit from the effort.
Since taking ZoyaMarie’s classes I have rarely experienced discomfort afterward. This is not always the case with other exercise classes. Attending ZoyaMarie’s class however, has been a different experience because of her ability to educate about body function and apply it to the exercises.
Louise Hoppe Mermod, Retired RN
I came to Body Unity because I was curious about YOU! I was on the web doing research about posture and I ran across Tom Myers (Anatomy Trains) I looked for someone in CA and I found you. Oh, look! She’s a Pilates teacher!, oh she’s a dancer!, oh she’s been through the Franklin Method Teacher Training!! I’ve got to meet this woman! So after one introductory session with you I thought, “I guess I’ll do this 12 KMI series!”
Now, after working with you, I don’t hurt anywhere. It’s easier for me to do the everyday stuff of life. I really notice it when I’m teaching Pilates (I’m probably twice the age of most of the people who come to the class). I may not be muscle strong, but I can move well in my body. I now have even more mobility. I was thinking about taking up golf or going back to dance.
After the session on the neck and head, my voice opened up and was more resonant. This is really great for an older person, rather than sounding weak and raspy.
Even though every week I had to drive x no of miles from Lake Tahoe to San Rafael to work with you, it was worth it!
Anne Blake, Pilates teacher, Realtor
ZoyaMarie is an excellent body worker who has helped me and other students of mine with a variety of foot problems. I've been getting body work, massage and healing therapy work for 40 years and Zoya Marie is one of the very best, most thorough, and most knowledgeable. Just in case you want extra help with your plantar fasciitis.
Ross Hollowell, USPTA Certified Tennis Professional
Mt. Tam Racquet Club
I'm doing OK now, and have been able to return to my yoga practice, thanks to you. As you recall, I originally came to you post-surgery hoping you'd help me with my body structure and movement so that I could resume my regular practice, which I have now succeeded in doing! Thanks so much!
Dr. Gareth Loy, President of Gareth, Inc., Software engineer and consultant, internationally.
ZoyaMarie is an inspirational teacher who clearly communicates the conceptual ideas of the Franklin Method by expert demonstration and imagery. She has taught many Workshops/classes for ballet students of all ages and ballet teachers as well. She finds ways to present the material in an age appropriate manner.
Ilona McHugh, former dancer with American Ballet Theatre
I wish to say how much I enjoy the Pilates class taught by ZoyaMarie Jilbere. She is one of the most knowledgeable instructors I have taken classes from and readily shares her wisdom and knowledge with her class.
ZoyaMarie’s classes usually begin with a wonderful foot exercise using a Franklin ball as she explains how important flexible and supple feet are good for our balance and posture. She challenges the class with varying movement.
As an Ironman triathlete in my 50’s, ZoyaMarie’s class has greatly helped me recover from my strenuous training, help improve my flexibility, balance, and mobility with the use of mental imagery of good posture. She is one of the few instructors that actually explains in detail why we do an exercise and how it benefits our body and overall health. She uses a skeleton and other visual props to show how our body works which helps everyone gain a greater understanding of what muscles we are using when we move. I find this very helpful.
Patty Sanders, Triathlete
Steve and I were talking recently about how you single-handedly saved our ballroom dance career and I wanted to take a moment to thank you.
Do you remember? About two years ago, I was having problems with my neck and considered giving up dancing. There was something about our way of dancing that was hurting me. If we couldn’t fix the problem, I would have to stop dancing; Steve wouldn’t continue without me.
As a dancer, you must know what a sad day that would have been. We would have given up one of our passions!
We came to you because you are a dance teacher, but that was the smaller part of it. You know more about biomechanics than anyone I have ever met. Steve says he didn’t learn a whit about functional anatomy in medical school and that you should be teaching future doctors.
In three lessons, you diagnosed the problem, worked with us to eliminate it and gave us images to use so that we could maintain the new way on our own. It’s a tribute to your teaching that I no longer have neck and arm pain. We became immediately self-correcting. We could find our way back out of the old habit if it re-asserted itself. And at this point in time, we never dance the old, painful way.
Anne Lieberman, Personal Coach, Certified Lefkoe Practitioner
Steve Oshry, MD, Retired head of Dermatology
Body Unity’s approach to body conditioning is highly practical to me, and not something I do once or twice a week. Every day I make use of the things I have learned from ZoyaMarie -- whether I am exercising, sitting at my desk, or doing household chores. I especially like that she uses routines and movements that she might use with multiple clients, but then tailors them for my particular body and its strengths and weaknesses.
Laurel Elkjer, Journalist, Biker, Rower, Classical Singer
I awoke this morning able to stand so much straighter. You are awesome.!!. Thank you so much for bringing all your knowledge and studies to bear on my problem with my neck. I never expected so much change so fast. I know that I want some more of your magic.
Stephen Gold, Retired Orthodontist
I began working with ZoyaMarie to aid in the development of myself as a dancer. I soon learned that although Pilates has overwhelming physical benefits, it also allowed an emotional and intellectual growth of myself as a person. Even when my focus changed to a degree in physical therapy, I pursued this expanded education of the system of Pilates in hopes to integrate its concepts into my future work. The beauty and integrity of ZoyaMarie’s work in Pilates directs a system that develops the body as a whole.
Michelle Harui, Physical Therapist
Raindrop Technique Testimonials
I approached my raindrop session with modest expectations, ready for some nice smells and little bit of massage. The experience proved extraordinary. A sense of safety and well being flowed over me as the treatment progressed, and when it was over, my spine felt reborn.
Art Gralapp, Sales Manager
My first experience felt really good. I left feeling looser all over. But the most dramatic thing that happened for me was the amount of energy I woke up with the next morning. I was motivated and alive. I decided to take a hike, an unusual thing for me, and I hiked uphill for 5 mi. and with a steady pace, never felt winded. I experienced a beautiful view which added to my overall joy, and was not the least bit sore the next day.
My Second experience with the Raindrop was quite different. It was much more internal. I first felt myself go deep within myself and then I felt my being expand, like it was going to the edge of the universe. Quite remarkable, I have never experienced anything like it.
Steve Sellin, retired Fireman
I came for a Raindrop session because I was sick. It complete relaxed me and when I left I felt as if it has flushed the illness right out of me. I must have been right, because the next day I was perfectly fine. In fact, I felt more energy than I normally feel.
Lise Niem, Esthetician
I was more tired before than after. Somehow it shifted the energy in my body. It allowed a sense of relaxation yet took away some of the old tension so there was room for new energy. I felt a release and a renewal.
Kim Wesch, Woman’s Boutique owner