Watsuyoga

Yoga means union

Individuals, families, friends, and teams, access and celebrate deeper levels of union on land and in water in Watsuyoga. In threes, help each other learn Watsu's basic moves in the Watsu Round . Complement its eight hours in a warm pool with four hours of Tantsuyoga that brings Watsu onto land. Take team building to a new level in your own workshop, or as part of a longer retreat at a destination spa. Besides being combined with Tantsuyoga in Watsuyoga, the Watsu Round is introduced in four hour classes, that are complete in themselves. Even if you never attend another Watsu class, you will never forget the joy of floating someone at your heart, and being floated and stretched between two others during its three hours in the water. It can also be the first step on whatever path you are drawn to in the water.

Like other forms of Yoga, the potential is inexhaustible. Once learned, the oversight of the third, allows us to explore how deep we can connect with our eyes closed. The more we repeat the rounds on land or water with the same three or others, the deeper we enter into union. The more friends two of us float or hold between us, introducing the moves we learn in Watsuyoga, the more people we bring into union.
Working Together

Individuals are welcomed to our scheduled Watsuyoga and Watsu Round classes. If you attend with two family members or freinds and wish to only work with each other, you are welcome to share this unforgettable powerful experience. If at least six wish to share it, we can arrange a workshop for you in your own pool, or in one we provide (or at a destination spa).
In 2015, when a fire devastated Harbin Hot Springs, where Harold Dull started Watsu 35 years earlier, and still taught, he searched for pools where he could continue to develop the Watsu Round. Harold found that 6 students could comfortably learn and share the Watsu Round in a 12 foot (4 meter) diameter pool. Being able to teach 6 in a single session pool furthers Harold's goal of making the joy of Watsu's unconditional whole body holding accessible to as many people as possible.
Email enquiries to pavana@watsu.com.

The Watsu Round
Harold Dull developed the Watsu Round in classes around the world with the help of countless instructors. Since it has proven to be the best way to introduce the Basic moves of Watsu, most Basic Watsu and Watsu 1 classes begin with the Watsu Round.
Take turns in Watsu Round's three roles:
  1. The Held. Eyes closed, surrender to the water. Enjoy being taken through Watsu's powerful moves timed to your breath, and the movement as water, by one from one side and then, after being held out in stillness, by the other from the other side until, held out again, the first places one hand under your lower back and rests the other hand on your hara*, just below the navel, the body center. Peace. Be gently leaned back at the wall, a hand on each of your heart gates**, their other hands holding your hands to their heart centers. Three become one.
  2. The Holder. Once you have learned all the moves and have the guide's oversight, close your eyes. Let the water do everything. Drop into the emptiness at the bottom of the breath. Be drawn up out of it each time the one in your arms gets lighter, establishing the rhythm of the moves and stretches to come. When those moves take you beyond the breath, stop. Hold their body gates** pressed with one arm while whatever is drawn out your other arm from your Heart Center becomes a continuum, a moving as water that engages your whole being. Three become one.
  3. The Helper. Oversee the holder's moves, mirroring them, and the breathing, and the continuum, and the freedom, and the peace, in your own body. Three become one.
* *Hara. This area around the body center in Japan, has a major role in the Zen Shiatsu that Harold Dull brought into the water as he was developing Watsu. This, and the engagement with the gates, takes Watsu into a realm beyond that of a relaxation technique.
** Gates. In India, Harold was told that parts of the body he was repeatedly drawn to were considered gates where the spirit enters. In some traditions these are considered the four corners, the places in the foetus where the arms and legs develop out of (the legs that connect us to the earth and the arms that reach out to others). Harold named those in the corners of the chest, where the lung meridians originate, the Heart Gates, and those at the hips, the Body Gates. He found that while keeping a tight hold of the body gates in a Watsu between the shoulder and hand of one arm, he became aware of the connection with the one floating at his heart, and whatever was being drawn out his other arm from the heart center. He introduced this into a new Basic Watsu as the movement as water continuum.

In our workshops four or five basic moves are taught at a time in teaching rounds. The first time that someone is a holder they are talked and assisted through each move. When it is their turn again to be a holder in that round, they can choose to go through the same moves with their eyes closed under the oversight of the helper. On the completion of the three teaching rounds, all the moves they have learned are shared in a Grand Round. There is no pressure to memorize the sequence. The moves are posted behind the Holder where the Helper can read them off if needed.

Watsu should always be first learned from a qualified instructor who will train you in the body mechanics needed for your well being as well as that of the one in your arms. Find all the authorized upcoming classes here. Instructors focus on a major principle in each teaching round:
  • Alignment both of your own body and the one in your arms. The first Training Round focuses on the spinal traction needed throughout the opening moves to support the head and prevent discomfort.
  • Adaptation Another training round focuses on how to adapt your moves to the size and flexibility of whoever you have in your arms.
  • Freeing the Body Another focuses on your own moving as water in a continuum. In the subtitle to the first Watsu book, Freeing the Body in Water, the "body" was that of both. The more we can free our own body, the more we can help others free theirs. This freeing leads to the final move when we hold someone out in Distant Stillness where whatever was freed in their body can be integrated without our engagement.
  • Basic Tandem Watsu
    Besides returning to the pool in threes to share again the joy of Watsu in all three roles, any two can return with a friend or family member and introduce them to Watsu, floating them into bliss between them in the Basic Tandem Watsu with the same moves, the same way of helping each other, and the unique beautiful Tandem Finish that they learn in the Watsu Round. Though this session is complete in itself, the moves from both sides can be repeated to take all into deeper levels, or followed by the moves of the complete Tandem Watsu that can be learned in an additional class. Another class introduces working as teams of three on the Explorer Path,helping each other bring more creativity into their Watsu.
    Tantsuyoga
    Tantsuyoga is an ideal complement to the Watsu Round. In both, the support of the third allows you to keep your eyes closed as your breath is drawn up each time the breath rises in the one you hold, establishing a profound connection. The continuum, the movement as water, naturally flows through all three of you as you learn a complete round you can do anywhere at a table or on the ground.
    Team Building

    Watsuyoga brings a new level of bonding and working together that benefits a team and its subsequent productivity. In a 12 hour workshop, the 8 hours devoted to the Watsu Round are usually spread over two mornings and the 4 hours of Tantsuyoga, the afternoons. If the Watsuyoga is part of a longer retreat, it can be presented in the first two days , or in shorter daily pool sessions, establishing the level of cooperation to follow in your meetings. If a suitable pool is nearby, classes in it can be spread out to accomodate your needs.

    Though three participate in each Watsu Round, in a workshop, up to a dozen participants can experience floating and helping each of the others in the training rounds that introduce Watsu's basic moves, three or four at a time. Receiving them, helping each other, applying them, and then repeating each move in the opening moves of the subsequent training rounds, helps remove any stress that might accompany learning a sequence, stress often compounded by having to perform for an instructor.

    The greater ease (and joy) of learning the basic moves in the Watsu Round has been demonstrated in the countless classes in which Harold Dull developed and fine tuned this method with the help of dozens of other Watsu instructors. Almost all instructors around the world introduce Watsu with the Watsu Round. All have noticed how the students continue to approach learning subsequent moves as a team, enjoying helping each other.

    Besides being freed of the stress that can accompany learning, participants will experience Watsu's unique power to reduce stress that
    • places it at the top of the menu in many spas
    • helps veterans with post traumatic stress disorde
    • provides athletes with the fastest recovery after a strenous engagement.
    A long distance runner who had his practice sessions followed by a Watsu found his speed increasing and went on to win a medal in the recent Olympics.
    Typically Watsu does more than relax. It helps us get in touch with our energy and its sources, and our connection to others.

    If you don't already have a pool at your facility, when you see the benefits that come from the Rounds, you might consider installing one where employees who have learned the Round can regularly share the three roles, or join as pairs to introduce Watsu to other employees that they float between them. The satisfaction, teamwork and productivity of all will continue to increase.

    Contact our office for information about having a Watsuyoga Team Building at your pool, or at a pool we reserve for your team, or at a destination spa where we already have Watsu instructors in the water such as those in Hawaii, Tahiti, Japan, India, Tuscany, Costa Rica, France, Saint Petersburg and countless other beautiful places.

    If your pool is to be used for rounds, for every six participants it should have at least 115 square feet (about 7 square meters) of water between 3.5 and 4 feet depth (106 t0 120 centimeters) that can be heated to 94 degrees Fahrenheit (35 celsius).

    When you indicate the range of dates you wish to have it within and the number of participants, we will contact the closest instructors and inform you which ones are available and what the cost would be.
    Email enquiries to pavana@watsu.com.

    Benefits of Learning in Rounds
    Learning in Rounds has proven to establish a supportive environment that enhances learning in various ways:
    • Setting a Good Tone: From the onset, Rounds' participants experience learning Watsu as a joyful and supportive experience, with kindness and compassion.
    • Developing Rapport, Having Fun, and Providing Mutual Support: Group dynamics of Rounds enhance the ability to develop good rapport, promote a sense of fun and playfulness, promote curiosity and opportunity to get to know each other, and provide mutual support through feeling of inclusion and wellbeing.
    • Healthy Social Dynamics: Rounds, by their nature, with groups of three, help ensure that everybody feels included and able to participate; prevents undesirable social dynamics such as formation of cliches, awkward pairings, and being left out; prevents concerns about paired intimacy; and generally promotes feelings of safety, relaxation, and being supportive as the initial Watsu experience.
    • Enhancing Learning: By their nature, Rounds provide a natural way of learning, through a cooperative rather than competitive environment, opportunity to learn by receiving, giving, and observing, as well as by being guided verbally and practicing in silence, plenty of repetition without tedium, experiencing with eyes closed and open, and plenty of time for integration.
    • Accommodating Individual Needs: Individual learning style is supported, with opportunities to learn by hearing, seeing, doing, experiencing, being guided, figuring out on one's one, being part of both a larger group and more intimate smaller group.
    • Preparing for Working in Pairs: By learning initially in groups of threes, in every combination of receiving, giving, and helping, participants build a solid foundation concerning Watsu's basic moves, develop a supportive social context; and generally prepare for later possibilities of working in pairs, in a way that feels safe and natural.
    Help realize the potential in Watsuyoga
    We invite those who know the benefits of Watsu and want to help make them accessible to others to join in crowd funding. Contributions will be applied to professionally promoting Watsuyoga. Once sufficiently promoted, the income Tantsuyoga generates will be applied towards establishing training centers and scholarships.

    Contribute through a secure payment server

    Any amount will be appreciated

    Watsu® and Tantsu® are registered service marks of Harold Dull