Barbara Helynn Heard


Barbara Helynn Heard, LMP, of Seattle, Washington teaches Mana Lomi® - traditional, clinically and structurally oriented lomilomi. She has over 40 years experience giving massage and has been licenced to do so since 1996 when she graduated from Brian Utting School of Massage. She has maintained a full time private massage practice in Seattle since that time...

Barbara Helynn began her lomilomi journey in 1996, and she has studied lomilomi and Hawaiian spirituality with several teachers since then. Since 2003 she has aligned with native Hawaiian healer and Mana Lomi® founder Kumu Maka'ala Yates D.C..

WA massage license number MA 00009734
AMTA member since 1996 (American Massage Therapy Association)


My name, Barbara Helynn Heard, reflects who I am.  The name Barbara was given to me by my parents and means foreigner.  This concept of  foreigner reflects the importance of my connection with people of other cultures while also honoring my own lineage.  My middle name Helynn signifies my responsibility and privilege as a light carrier.   Heard is my husband’s family name and is the surname of people who presumed ownership of his ancestors as slaves. Forgiveness and healing is happening within our special family.

Lomi lomi is a way of life which begins for me with choosing again each day to live in right relationship with Spirit, with nature and with humanity and especially to be in right relationship within my own body, mind and spirit.  I regularly meditate, dance hula, attend Pilates classes and practice somatic movement exploration for my own wellbeing, as well as in preparation for my work as a massage therapist and teacher.

I began doing massage as a teen-ager in the 1970’s.  I graduated from Brian Utting School of Massage in Seattle, WA in 1996 and since then have maintained an active private practice in Seattle called Awareness Massage.  I started learning lomilomi in 1996 at the tail end of massage school and have continued to to learn and practice lomilomi every since.

An important - and fun - aspect of my lomi lomi training is creating native Hawaiian crafts such as the clothing and adornments I am wearing in the photo above.  Working with natural materials to create things has helped me be aware of my connection with nature, and my place in the lineage of humanity and my responsibly to hold space and maintain connection between those people who came before us, and those who will follow us.  And creating beautiful functional objects allows me to play with art; I've been an active artist since childhood.

I love teaching people highly effective, scientifically focused clinical thinking and hands-on techniques which are spiritually grounded in the foundation of Spirit-Nature-Humanity.   In my teaching I emphasize body awareness, use of one’s weight, development of keen palpation skills and the use of the creative power of the words.  My intent as a teacher is to see the Light in each person and to help each student to be and to do their very best.  I help students develop a quality of touch which is deep yet gentle, and also to integrate spiritual and/or emotional qualities into bodywork sessions if so desired to support healing on multiple levels.  

I now love, practice and teach Mana Lomi® - a form of highly effective, bone deep yet gentle, clinically and structurally focused lomilomi developed by my mentor Hawaiian healer and Mana Lomi® founder Maka'ala Yates D.C.   I have been honored since 2005 to teach lomilomi both as massage continuing education classes and also in several massage school programs.



In addition to my passion for practicing and teaching Mana Lomi®, I love to dance hula. Hula is my joy! I have danced hula at Halau Hula o Napualani and Na Lei o Manu'akepa since 2000 (part of the time with the first group, and part of the time with the second group.) I love the Hawaiian language, and I avidly read books and articles about Hawaiian language, history, culture and spirituality. I enjoy networking with other lomilomi folks from various lineages.

I live in Seattle with my wonderful husband Gary who is also a healer, living in glorious retirement now from work as a chemical addictions counselor. I love cats, my garden and our two grown children. Awareness Massage, my private practice, is in our home. My life is full, and I feel grateful to live in this auspicious time when people from cultures worldwide are coming together to share our lives and our earth home

This is a lehua blossom which grows on  ohia trees in Hawaii. Ohia trees are one of the first plants to return to an area after a lava flow. The Lehua is related to the sun and to Light, as I am too.  Lehua is my Hawaiian name.  

E malama pono, take good care,

Barbara Helynn Heard