I wanted to write this post not just about the actual treatment/therapy or however you might like to phrase it, but also on the therapist/practitioner, because I feel that you can have a great therapy but it takes a certain connection between the customer and practitioner to make the experience either a good one or a great one.
It is important to connect and feel comfortable with the person treating you and to understand a little bit more about them, what makes them tick, some of their history, their philosophies a head start in helping one to make that decision of “yes I think I would really like to try and benefit from that treatment with that person.”
Like all things however, one therapy might suit one person but not another, much like trying on a pair of shoes might be fantastic to one person’s foot but not another, there’s nothing wrong with the shoe it’s just a case of it fits one person better.
So with this in mind I would like to tell you a little bit about Jane, my Zero Balancing therapist, then a bit about my experiences with Zero Balancing and then some official links if you wish to learn more.
Jane von Bieberstein
London born Jane spent her childhood in Tunbridge Wells. It was here that her passion for ballet grew shortly followed by a love of gymnastics. Her childhood days were filled up with both, sometimes 10 hrs plus of ballet and the commitments of being in the South East Gymnastic Squad.
Unfortunately the love affair with both was to come to a halt as they clashed in many ways. Dance won the day, her passion now taking on other forms such as tap and modern. Jane sadly soon learned though that her dancing dreams would not come to fruition. Her mother having never taken it seriously put her foot down. Her daughter having attended a very academic girl’s grammar school was then steered towards taking a Pharmacy Degree in Brighton, graduating in 1989.
Jane whilst dancing met Alan Herdman who taught Pilates, this was the first nurturing in taking an interest in ‘other’ forms of exercise, sowing the seeds slowly. Having moved on from the University College Hospital, branched out and taken another job, Jane’s professional interests veered towards specializing in HIV or Oncology. In 1989 she started at the Marsden, this is also the time she met her German born husband with whom she ended up living in Putney with, continuing her profession, marriage and still dancing 5-6 professional ballet classes a week.
Jane also is a GYROTONIC® teacher (which I will cover in another post), and it was through a girlfriend of hers that she first came in to contact with this particular form of therapy, having found a natural affinity with it upon undertaking sessions during her maternity leave. Jane finally then took the plunge and decided to train. Luckily one of the training centres was 15 minutes from her in-laws, so 9 month baby girl was taken for two weeks to visit grandparents whilst she completed her first basic course. All in all the whole certification took about one year.
It was whilst working in Nature Works that she met Geoff Leonard, a Zero Balancer. Upon having some sessions Jane felt that this therapy would accentuate her GYROTONIC® treatments, allowing her to work more deeply in the areas she would try to open up through Gyro.
Zero Balancing is a wonderfully relaxing treatment based on eastern healing traditions.
In order to take up Zero Balancing one has to have a recognized certificated therapy, i.e. acupuncture. Unfortunately at that time GYROTONIC® was not recognized, however Jane earlier had undertaken an ITEC Therapeutic Massage Course with Claire Maxwell Hudson, which though she liked, she felt only scratched upon the surface.
Training in Zero Balancing never really stops as it is a personal learning journey also in self development however Jane did complete the two courses, took on board a mentor, finished her case studies, wrote essays and worked continuously on herself.
So you can see from this point that Jane’s whole life so far has contributed to a vast wealth of knowledge both conventional and unconventional on the workings of the body, which I think as a therapist is a huge advantage, giving one a fast forwards in learning anything related, giving one time also to work on the spiritual side. This also meant that moving from the Pharmaceuticals to Zero Balancing and GYROTONIC® became quite a natural easy transition, though many of her friends and colleagues questioned it.
How does Zero Balancing work in Jane’s eyes?
Jane feels the Zero Balancing is like mapping a client before moving on to for example GYROTONIC®. It gives her feedback on their energy fields. For instance someone might come in with an injury, you can see that the symptoms are in a certain place, but it might not be the place that needs moving. Often one will have pain in the place that is mobile but very often another area is very stuck and immobile, so Zero Balancing gives a complete picture, allowing her to see whether they are grounded, where the energy levels are.
Touch is used to locate and release tension held in the bones (which is deeper than muscle-held tension) and as a result the muscles in turn are able fully to release their tension.
Zero balancing aims to touch bone, not just the soft tissue as in massage. Rigid bones can feel very tense, but worked on areas take on a more spongy sensation. By touching a stiff area it encourages the body firstly to pay attention, to think on its current state and how it should be and this is hopefully helps the energy to flow, allowing the bones to take on a kind of fluidity, this is when energy fields start to be moved.
Bones connect with the chakras and this is the deepest energy layer of the body, they have memories like muscles and when tension is removed from such a deep layer it has a knock on effect removing tension from the layers sitting above. One can end up feeling quite re-arranged from inside out after a session, it might feel very passive but it is in fact incredibly active.
During a treatment the therapist connects very deeply with the customer, their body telling her where to go and this can give Jane sometimes a completely different view of the person. Often she feels that she sees the more ‘authentic’ person i.e. realising this person is so amazing but they don’t know it themselves, like they have disconnected on some level. So one always sees the better part of a person and their full potential that they may not realize themselves, it is a lovely experience.
One is dressed in comfortable clothing during the Zero Balancing Session and predominantly laid upon a couch. There is a set way the therapist works around the body, though guided by the feedback from the person’s energy fields. This navigational process is uncannily similar to GYROTONIC®, hence such a complimentary treatment to each other. The session starts with hands placed on the pelvis, this area being important, because if not upright the rest of the spine does not sit properly. Then movement goes to the lumbar spine, ribs and pulling energy down the legs.
Jane did try Zero Balancing on her GYROTONIC® guru, Julio, which he loved, saying it felt like she was opening up channels in his body. Fritz the Zero Balancing Inventor was an acupuncturist first and foremost, so there are a lot of similarities between the two.
Like many alternative therapies, it is important for the person receiving it to be open minded, the more sessions you have the deeper you connect, and no session is the same twice. Jane says “by improving someone’s own general well being it puts them in a better place to heal themselves, so if their energy fields are really clear it is much easier to heal.”
I then asked Jane if it had ever been difficult to work on someone
Jane did say that if someone is totally blocked it can be hard and in this situation it is hard to gauge one’s effectiveness at that particular time, even though it works regardless, it is the therapist’s natural interpretation in trying to get feedback.
I asked her how she felt in these situations
Jane answered honestly and bravely saying that it can perhaps cause a little bit of self doubt.
I asked Jane then if she had to protect herself in some way, protection being “emotionally and energy wise”
Jane answered that with Zero Balancing there are clear boundaries between therapist and client, one does blend energetically. Some people can be very heavy energetically, this does not relate to size nor weight, one persons energy can be like a bouncy ball and light whereas another can be heavy like a thud and this can differ from one end of the body to another.
I asked Jane if she remembered her first paying client
Jane answered that she had been practising on her GYROTONIC® clients from very early on so there was a merging between the two, however she remembers early on having a client with very bad scoliosis. The treatment did wonders for her; it helped with pain levels enormously so this was a very good starting experience for her as a therapist.
I asked Jane about the frequency needed for treatments.
Jane answered that in a severe situation it would be more than once a week, gradually lessening. In an average situation it would be once a week for three weeks to gauge the effects. After the first session one can feel miraculous, this is not uncommon, the second not so much, the third is when the client begins to connect more.
Jane has been having Zero Balancing for years, sometimes the after effects can be a day or two later, you just suddenly think “oh I feel so different I can’t quite put my finger on it.”
I asked about aftercare and after effects
She said it is unpredictable. She has never had a client feel a terrible after effect, but sometimes one can feel uncomfortable at being re-arranged, though it’s a good thing. This dissipates. As you get off the couch the treatment still works and continues to do so and needs time for the body to go with it, sometime one can feel really energized.
I asked Jane if she had a quote or an ethos with her work or life philosophy.
The treatment can be used to relieve backache, headache, fatigue, insomnia and nervousness and to clear and calm the mind.
Jane explained she had never envisioned going in to anything spiritual, her life has taken her on many journeys all of which have brought her to this place now.
Now she meets when possible with Fritz her Zero Balancing Teacher who is very spiritual and spends times in Ashrams, has written books, is friends with Deepak Chopra, his spiritual learning’s are all integrated in to his continuous teachings.
These meetings and talks have spurred a heavy interest for her in energy which now she is researching and reading up upon. She has a belief that 99.9% of things going on, i.e. pain etc are emotional on some level of which the spiritual side helps to work on.
Janes life’s lessons have taught her not to be so judgemental; you see the bigger picture even if they can’t see it themselves. She is passionate on the philosophy that in order to be a good therapist in this type of field one really has to work on oneself first. You need to love yourself to be able to help other people, so by dealing with herself helps her to deal with her clients. When you look upon someone, reactions you might have that are negative are a reflection upon oneself with one’s own failings or insecurities and to work on those will eradicate those negative feelings.
Alternative therapies have become more popular, i.e. meditation. Jane feels most people embark on this for escapism and somehow disassociate from their bodies which takes away from the purpose of doing this, that one must be grounded, ones solar plexus connected, everything has to be on a physical level as well as spiritual.
Her desire is to bring people to work more on the physical side rather than just the mental state, because if it is in your body then it is really there, whereas not just in ones imagination. She said “Listen to your body, it never lies, the chatter in your head can talk you out of listening to your intuition, but your body never lies to you.”
I asked her what she would like to achieve in the next year.
Jane said she would like more awareness of GYROTONIC® and GYROKINESIS®, for it to be more accessible. For people to invest more in themselves and their health, to see it as a priority before they have to take note due to ill health or an accident. She has also found using these therapies on children with learning difficulties to be extremely beneficial and would like to see this more available also.
How have I found Zero Balancing as a treatment upon myself so far?
Jane von Bieberstein says: “I was drawn to become a Zero Balancing practitioner after being on the receiving end for several years. I found no other treatment left me with such a profound sense of wellbeing. After a session, my body felt as though it had been rearranged from the inside out. I always wanted to come back for more.”
I went to Jane with the intention of GYROTONIC®, I had not heard of Zero Balancing. I was incredibly nervous about the whole thing, in fact to the point I felt quite sick.
Why? I have suffered from chronic pain for 2-3 years now with an undiagnosed condition. It has taken me with serious determination about a year to go from being bedridden to now being able to walk and get out and about.
I have tried and tested many treatments, conventional like physio and alternative, it just takes a wrong pull or making me move in a way that sets off my pain levels which sets me back of which I am not a fan. I knew GYROTONIC® was exercise based, so my anxiousness set in.
However upon meeting Jane she filled me with a sense of confidence “yes I can do this”… and she also enthused a confidence in herself that she would be able to help me, that I could put my trust in her hands. She advised me to start with Zero Balancing then move on to GYROTONIC®.
Having had a holistic background myself, I struggled with loving hands on treatments, to now barricading myself against physical touch because of ‘possible’ pain, but when Jane put her hands upon me, I felt nothing but a sense of calm, a sense of “this is just amazing” washing over me.
Yes there were a few times especially the first time where a muscle kicked in to a spasm and hurt, but as a whole the experience was amazingly relaxing. There is an old advert about a beer that gets to places no other beer can, Jane was like that beer, she would hit spots and for me it was a simple “ahhh thank goodness” mentally as I relaxed in to her movement.
I went home after the first session and slept heavily. The second session I enjoyed, not as miraculous as the first which she says is common. The third time I was in a lot of pain from having sat for three hours at a dinner party, I was nearly in tears, however even though anxious I laid upon the couch and somehow, she managed to take away the pain, re-adjusted me and all the fuzzy head, stress and pangs of pain throughout my body went.
I can’t recommend Zero Balancing enough to anyone, I am an advocate.
Where can you get this treatment?
You can log on to the website Zero Balancing UK and it has a ‘find a practitioner’ section…or if you are a local of East Sheen you can either:
The Garage Studio
click on to the website where Jane practices to get further details: The Garage Studio
or better still contact her here: For further information and bookings, contact Jane:
mob: 07811 132 313
Thank you for reading, if you have any comments/feedback or questions I welcome you to put on a kettle and fill up my comments section I will answer back as concisely as possible 🙂
©2014 All Rights Reserved – Justine @ LivinginEastSheen.co.uk