Biography

massage-elephantElke Riesterer was born in Freiburg, Germany in May of 1949. Initially trained as a dental hygienist and technician she became a massage therapist after immigrating to the USA in 1983. In the 1990s, her passion for elephants and other animals led her into the field of animal bodywork. She has been volunteering at the Oakland Zoo since 1997 and has traveled to Africa several times to provide her healing touch at the Elephant and Rhino Orphanage in Nairobi, Kenya.

She also attended to Asian elephants in Thailand and India. The Tellington Touch (TTouch) is her favorite modality. In addition to many exotic species, Elke works with horses, dogs and other domestic animals. She brings and innate ability to facilitate healing in animals whose trust has been broken.

In her work on humans, Elke became a Certified Massage Therapist in 1984 and a Registered Jin Shin Do® Practicioner in 1988. Other training and practices include:

  • Transpersonal Integration (process oriented acupressure)
  • Polarity
  • Shiatsu
  • Reflexology
  • Zero Balancing
  • Cranial Sacral Therapy
  • Hypnosis
  • Trager
  • Watsu
  • Chi Nai Tsang (abdominal massage)
  • Continuum Movements
  • Feldenkrais
  • TTouch

Elke has participated in meditation retreats, vision quests, Angeles Arien’s shamanic training, African dance and drumming, and a variety of psychology and personal growth workshops.