Somatic Therapy emphasizes body awareness as an essential part of psychotherapy. This is especially beneficial in the treatment of PTSD when symptoms involve physiological distress, affect dysregulation, or dissociation.
Traditional approaches to therapy attend to the cognitive and emotional aspects of clients’ lives, while the somatic experience is often left out of the room.
Our bodies need to process stressful and traumatic events through breath and movement. Unfortunately, we are often taught to sit still and override movement impulses. As a result, the biological effects of stressful or traumatic events tend to persist long after events have passed.
“Talk therapy” can perpetuate this culture of stillness unless the therapist has the training and skills to integrate the body into psychotherapy. Interventions to enhance embodiment in trauma treatment expand the therapeutic experience beyond where words can take a client.
In this course, you will learn the science of embodiment and why somatic psychology is essential for helping clients work with dysregulated affect and arousal states that accompany PTSD. We will discuss the key common factors of somatic psychology which are rooted in interpersonal neurobiology and polyvagal theory. We will also discuss the difference between “top-down” and “bottom-up” interventions and how they can be used to strengthen clients’ readiness for trauma reprocessing.
Without interventions that incorporate somatic therapy awareness and movement, many therapeutic approaches are limited in their ability help clients fully release the impact of traumatic events. In other words, we cannot simply think our way out of traumatic activation. Through the intervention shared in this training, you will learn to help clients not only cope with their wounds but also find greater resolution.