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transformational outdoor experience for
health professionals, trainers, coaches and exuberants

spring 2019, central oregon


Ever have a longing to get out in nature and move your body in celebration of habitat and tribe? Are you looking for an alternative to the stifling hotel-based model of continuing education? Would you like to share ideas and learn from some incredibly interesting people in the health and training community?

if so, imagine a gathering devoted to health and humanity, ancestry and activism, movement and meaning, all set in the wild habitat of the pacific northwest.

Exuberant Animal will set up a primitive camp with all the primitive luxuries. We’ll do all the great natural things: movement classes, presentations, campfires, martial art, massage, stargazing, drumming and dancing. We’ll ponder the mysteries of life and talk about ways to make a difference in the world.

who this is for

Ideal for health professionals and serious amateurs, this is a radical alternative to conventional continuing education. This is about actually living the experience of health, engagement and rapport. This is professional development that just so happens to be really fun and meaningful. You’ll hear powerful, diverse voices on health and the human experience and move your body in exciting new ways. This event will richen your understanding and deepen your practice.

Our exact location has not yet been chosen, but we’re looking for something like this…

Our exact location has not yet been chosen, but we’re looking for something like this…


why this is great

Experience is the language of the body. If you want to impress your nervous system, you’ve got to engage in authentic, physical challenge and participation. This is why Outback is so powerful. Instead of speaking exclusively to the head and intellect as in conventional conferences, this experience will penetrate to every cell in your body. The learning will sink in.

The logistics will be simple: Drive or fly into Bend, Oregon, then carpool the rest of the way. We’ll scout the site ahead of time and get the lay of the land. Exuberant Animal will organize a camp kitchen, and beyond that, things will pretty much take care of themselves. The primitive camping scene will give us plenty of room to explore, move and share. (50 people maximum.)

This is the kick-off event for a twice-yearly series that will return every spring and fall. This will give you a chance to develop friendships and professional partnerships that will endure for the rest of your life and beyond.

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Martial art classes and presentations will be facilitated by Frank Forencich, author of New Old Way and other books about health and the human predicament. Frank has been teaching movement arts for some 40 years and is the creator of Exuberant Animal.


Each participant will be issued a certificate documenting successful completion of the training. This may be used to petition for continuing education units through your organization. See an example here.

food and water

You’ll be responsible for providing most of your own food, especially breakfasts, lunches and snacks. You’ll also be responsible for preparing at least one or two meals for the entire group. (We’ll have camp kitchen and a good collection of pots and pans. There will probably be limited water on site, so plan on bringing plenty.)

Exuberant Animal will provide coffee each morning and bamboo plates (good for several meals, then can be burned or composted.) Please bring your own eating utensils, cup and mug. A camp stove will be available, but you might want to bring a small burner as well.

As for food, we’re omnivorous. We emphasize “earth food” over “space food.” (That is, we focus on the meaning that surrounds our food; context is just as important as content.) Modest quantities of beer and wine will be sometimes available and/or you can bring your own. Our philosophy is to have some alcohol-free nights, some modest nights and some rock-and-roll nights.


This will be a mostly electronics-free experience. That is, we’ll focus the lion’s share of our attention on habitat, ideas and one another. You can bring your laptops and phones, but don’t expect to be spending much time on them. Cell phone service will probably be sketchy and power will be minimal. However, we’ll try to rig up something that works; you should be able to count on an occasional trickle charge for your gear. Bring jet packs, batteries, solar chargers, power packs, etc. Try this site for cool solar stuff.

family and friends, bikes and dogs

This will be a fun event with periods of serious engagement. We’ll relax, but we’ll also step up with powerful physicality and focus. All attendees will be expected to join in the action as best they can. This event will be great for young people, but it’s probably not be a good fit for really young kids.

Bring your bikes, especially mountain bikes, gravel bikes and cross bikes. Dogs are welcome, especially those who play well with others.

medical, first aid and liability

We will have at least one first aid kit on hand and some participants will have expertise in basic injury care. However, there will be some degree of exposure and risk. In the event of illness or injury, it may be some time before help arrives. The primitive camping experience can bring certain hardships. Participants may suffer injury, illness or worse. Each participant is ultimately responsible for his or her own welfare before, during and after this event. Exuberant Animal and Frank Forencich assume no liability. You’ll be asked to sign a hold-harmless agreement with your registration.

space is limited

The total number of participants will be limited to 50. (There are constraints on the number of vehicles, impact on the land, etc.) Act early to secure your space.

cost, application and deposits

Your cost will include getting yourself to the site, along with all the required camping gear and food you’ll need for the duration. For the event itself, cost will vary depending on your level of participation and the duration of your stay. See this page for pricing information.

All participants must apply for admission and sign the waiver here.

To secure your spot and make your payment, visit this page.


All participants get an Outback T-shirt and a free copy of Frank’s new book, The Exuberant Animal Experience: Teacher’s Guide to Physicality, Philosophy and Rapport.

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