Mark Pogson, FwSS
Shiatsu Practitioner and Qigong Teacher
When our energy flows well, we feel more balanced and connected to nature and more grounded in the world. This basis for spiritual growth, personal fulfilment and physical and emotional wellbeing underpins all of my work and my life.
The Eastern healing arts help us develop an intimacy of connection with the self which ripples out through all our connections to the community and the natural world. As well as transforming our health it transforms our emotional state and our consciousness - promoting spiritual development and helping us find our place in the world.
I use both Qigong and Shiatsu to support and guide people on this journey, helping them to feel more connected with self, each other, and nature, and to be the best they can be.
My approach is rooted in practise - developing embodied knowing through actually experiencing the process - and is underpinned by an extensive knowledge and understanding of the history, tradition, and philosophy behind these practices.
I live and work in close harmony with nature's elements, and I emphasise the link between energy cultivation and the natural world in my teaching, particularly using the seasonal cycles and the foundation of the Chinese Five Elements.
I believe that Qigong should be accessible to those most in need, and so through teaching prison inmates, young homeless people, psychiatric patients, and people with Parkinson’s disease, I am happy to have been part of a growing movement that is bringing the benefits of Qigong to those with a variety of health and social needs.
My Tai Chi and Qigong journey started in the mid 1980s when I developed an interest in Eastern philosophy whilst studying for a degree in Environmental Science. Since then I've studied with many teachers and schools to deepen my knowledge and enrich my practice.
I qualified as a Shiatsu practitioner in 1997 and became a Member of the Register of the Shiatsu Society (MRSS) in 1999. In 2010 I completed a Post-Graduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning with The Shiatsu College and trained as a mentor with the Shiatsu Society (UK) so that I could teach and support others to become practitioners. In 2018 I became a Fellow of the Shiatsu Society (FwSS).
I set up SSOHA (Somerset School of Oriental Healing Arts) in 2005 to promote Eastern therapies and practices and to support practitioners. This included setting up and facilitating a successful network and regular events to help Qigong teachers to continue their professional development.
I'm currently a Fellow with the Shiatsu Society (FwSS) and am registered as
an A grade (Advanced) health instructor with the Tai Chi & Qigong Union for
The Importance of Nature
Nature has always been a driving force in my life and work: I have a history of working in nature conservation, including for the RSPB, and my healing practice has always been aligned to and shaped by my love of nature.
In October 2022 my partner and I moved from Somerset to the Rhins of Galloway in Scotland, where we now live a lifestyle that is shaped by and interwoven with the ebb and flow of nature, where we take inspiration from the bountiful wildlife, the big skies, and the elemental nature of the landscape, and where we are planting trees and rewilding our 4-acre field to increase biodiversity and combat climate change.
As well as creating a habitat for nature, we plan to establish a welcoming space for people to connect with nature for learning, personal development and wellbeing. In the not too distant future, I'm looking forward to facilitating retreats in this quiet, tucked away corner of Scotland - helping people to enhance their wellbeing and spirituality through engaging on a deep level with nature.