Oren’s background

Oren’s interest in both dance and health care began while exploring what to do after serving in the United States Marine Corps. Although Oren did not really dance at all until after the completion of his active duty military service, something about the cadence and discipline of military marching must have awakening and developed an interest and aptitude for moving in rhythm with others.

Although he is often complimented on his dancing, unlike many performers and instructors, Oren still does not consider himself a “dancer”. Dancing is something Oren has learned to do rather than something he has always done (naturally). As a result, Oren is able to relate to others who desire to learn and can often explain and demonstrate how THEY can do things in ways that other dancers and instructors often cannot.

Oren’s dance education began with Rene Gunsett in Ventura, California – where he was introduced to how to lead and follow rather than just dancing freestyle (alone) across from others. Oren then went on to study many different aspects of bodywork and holistic health at the National Holistic Institute in Oakland, California and from teachers of name-brand bodycare modalities (including Hellerwork, Aston Patterning, and Feldenkrais/Awareness Through Movement), and work with professional athletes, before moving to Ft. Walton Beach, Florida – where he was hired by Luanne Pullian and Bruno Collins to teach ballroom dancing for the local Fred Astaire Dance Studio chain.

Oren then moved to Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, where he was hired by John Swick to teach at his Fred Astaire Dance Studio (along with Forrest Vance and Susie Thompson). Wayne Eng invited Oren to move to Torrance, California to work for him, but upon arrival, Oren decided instead to teach for Joe and Hilda Lanza at Imperial Academy in Buena Park, California. Oren was then asked to teach for Pat Banks at her LonDance studio in Costa Mesa, California.

Oren then decided to further his medical education and return to the military. Oren was trained as a medic by the United States Army (Special Forces) and is a graduate of the Academy of Health Sciences. After leaving active duty, Oren again returned to bodywork and dance – this time in San Diego, California. Oren’s first massage client in San Diego was Mary Murphy (now a judge on the popular television show So You Think You Can Dance). While teaching for Michael Khiem at Starlight Dance Studio and dancing at Mary’s Champion Ballroom Academy, Oren also got to know and learn from competitive champions and television dance personalities like Ron Montez, Tony Meridith, and Melanie LaPatin, among others.

Marriage to a chiropractor and the birth of children dramatically reduced the frequency and extent of Oren’s dancing for many years – but resulted in further training and experience in a wide variety of holistic health care modalities and subjects like iridology, energy medicine, and feng shui.

After being asked to speak for the California Alternative Health Care Lecture Series, Oren began to teach a variety of health and safety classes for the American Red Cross – which revived his interest in emergency medical care. After moving to Santa Rosa, California, Oren continued to teach for the Red Cross, Petaluma Adult School, and began working in the emergency departments of Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital and Sutter Medical Center, and at Santa Rosa Junior College (in the Adapted Physical Education department).

Oren’s interest in orthopedics probably began with the birth of a son without a hand. In hospital emergency rooms, Oren was often responsible for much of the initial orthopedic care required by patients. Since Oren already had an extensive background and training as a massage/bodywork therapist, military medic, athlete and dancer, and was quite knowledgeable regarding muscles, bones, and joints, addressing orthopedic injuries and related issues was something that Oren both enjoyed and was good at. Oren has an Associate of Science degree in Orthopedic Technology and is nationally certified to assist others in many areas of orthopedic care and sports medicine (ranging from athletic training, fitness conditioning, and injury prevention, to surgical intervention and post-trauma rehabilitation – with or without splinting, casting, bracing, traction, or other wound care). Oren has gained experience as an Ortho Tech at UCSD Medical Center, Rady’s Childrens Hospital, the Veterans Administration Medical Center, Scripps, SCOPe, as well as various private orthopedic offices.

Living in San Diego, Oren has been a member of several dance performance companies and is fortunate to know and learn from some of the top salsa and bachata teachers dancers in the world – such as Sergio Jasso and Gabriela Equiz (of Alma Latina), David and Jennifer Stein and Juan and Erica Hernandez (of Majesty in Motion), Michael John Saltus (of Positive Energy), Serena Cuevas (of Deseo), Susie Nguyen (of Ooh La La), Carlos Cinta (El Unico Bachatero), Anthony Umina and Marissa Johnson (of Bachatamante), and Angel and Tulane Rivera (of A Time To Dance), to name only a few locals – not mention the many others who often come to town from other parts of the country, Mexico, and Europe to teach and perform.

Although he now knows over 20 different partner dances, Oren’s favorite dances are cha cha and bachata. Oren’s current health care practice tends to focus more on promoting education, well-being, and self-care rather than hands on treatment of injuries and illness. Over the years, Oren learned a lot about personality typing, relationship dynamics, human behavior, and marketing – and thus has a lot to offer both individuals and businesses interested in increase their income, influence, and impact. For information on how you may benefit from working with Oren, send a note describing what you are interested in to info@Knead2Dance.com.