MSBA: Our unique history

The Michigan Society for Bioenergetic Analysis (MSBA) was formed in 1974 by Medical Internist and Psychiatrist Dr. Jack McIntyre, along with several other founding therapists and contributing practitioners including Cheryl Little, Jean Fitzsimmons and Bob Rabus.

Early on in his psychiatric residency, Dr. McIntyre became interested in the work of Wilhelm Reich. As a birthday gift one year, Dr. McIntyre’s wife, Elizabeth, purchased a collection of original writings by Reich as a present for her husband. Dr. McIntyre immediately sought out two New York therapists mentioned in Reich’s essays: Bioenergetic founders Alexander Lowen M.D. and John C. Pierrakos, M.D.

Beyond talk therapy

During the 1950s, Dr. McIntyre was a practicing psychoanalyst in Birmingham, MI, when he started attending workshops given by Lowen and Pierrakos. The Bioenergetics work had an immediate and profound impact on Dr. McIntyre, and he began collaborating with other local therapists to explore this unique body-mind therapy.

As Dr. McIntyre and his colleagues started incorporating Bioenergetic theories and techniques into their practices, clients were responding. It was obvious that Bioenergetic Analysis had a positive and energizing effect. This new approach was helping people in ways that traditional talk therapy had not.

Eventually, Dr. McIntyre went on to partner with Lowen and Pierrakos, providing worldwide training programs in Bioenergetic therapy.
Dr. Jack McIntyre, Feb. 2, 1920 - Oct. 13, 1996
Dr. Jack McIntyre with early MSBA co-founders, Cheryl Little (on right) and Jean Fitzsimmons
‘The Barn’ is born

In 1970, inspired by the life-changing impact of Bioenergetics, Dr. McIntyre decided to create a space where local body-based psychotherapists could unite and practice in a supportive setting. 

He purchased a large parcel of wooded land in Rochester, MI, a dirt-road location considered “out-in-the-boondocks” at the time. There was an old barn on the property, which Dr. McIntyre, his colleagues, and his family-wife Elizabeth, son Jeb and daughter Sally-renovated and converted into a Bioenergetics therapy center. It became known simply as “The Barn.”

Today, the Barn continues to thrive as a place where individuals and Society members gather for therapy sessions, group workshops and certified training programs. Many of the therapists who first established the society are still practicing or conducting training here, including Cheryl Little and Jean Fitzsimmons.

The Barn’s serene setting and earthy interiors have provided a nurturing atmosphere for generations of therapists, trainers, clients and their families.

Dr. McIntyre, or Jack as he preferred to be called, left a legacy that has continued for four decades. He remains genuinely admired and greatly missed.
Psychotherapy that enhances your physical and emotional well-being
Michigan Society for Bioenergetic Analysis
Rochester Hills, Michigan
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Michigan Bioenergetic Analysis