BREATHEXPERIENCE > HISTORY
For more than 60 years, Professor Ilse Middendorf of Berlin, Germany, developed The Experience of Breath - a unique form of breath education based on connecting with the natural breath. This approach promotes a conscious experience of the sensation of movement of breath, free from control of the human will.
Since its inception this artistic form of breathing education has achieved international attention for its effectiveness as a somatic healing and growth process. Professor Middendorf began practicing her work in 1935. In response to the encouragement of her supporters, Prof. Middendorf founded the Institute of the Perceptible Breath in 1965. She lived and worked in Berlin, Germany, maintaining a full schedule-leading workshops and training practitioners throughout the world up until shortly before her death in May 2009. In Europe her work is recognized as one of the major practices in somatic education.
This work has seen a pattern of steady growth, so there are now several Middendorf schools in Europe. Each year these schools graduate between seventy and ninety new practitioners who work in a variety of areas of private practice, music and acting schools, clinics for rehabilitation, and psychology.
In 1986, Advanced Seminars of Berkeley, California and the Berlin Institute sponsored the introduction of Professor Middendorf's work to the United States. Subsequently, Ilse Middendorf and her close associate, Juerg Roffler, returned each year to conduct workshops and training seminars. In 1989, to support the growing interest in the Middendorf Breathwork, Juerg Roffler, initiated the first training program leading to the certification of Middendorf practitioners in the United States.
In 1991 Juerg founded the Middendorf Breath Institute and the first group of certified practitioners graduated in April, 1992. The 3+ year training program continues, with a new training group beginning every year and a half. The Berlin and Berkeley Institutes use the same curriculum for the certification and training program.
The Middendorf Institute for Breathexperience also offers workshops, retreats, and regular classes. Private sessions with certified practitioners are available as well.
Juerg Roffler is Director and founder of the Middendorf Institute for Breathexperience.