What is Somatic Therapy?
Many different fields, practitioners, and modalities may include somatic practices in their work, which means welcoming the body in the space, and including body based experiences.
Somatic work can be movement work, which might include gentle stretches, moving a part of your body that really feels like it wants to move, and expressing experiences and feelings through movement.
Somatic work can also be noticing what is happening in your body. Identifying sensations, and connecting different sensations to different feelings or responses.
Somatic work can be a wonderful practice for supporting healing, and releasing of sensations, stories, tensions, memories, and information that gets stored not just with a narrative, but in our bodies. Sometimes, information is stored primarily this way, and including somatic activities can recognize it and support moving through difficult experiences.
How Somatic Practice Can Work In Therapy
As we are chatting, I might ask you what you notice in your body. We may talk about physical processes, and how and when they occur. We include body sensations when practicing EMDR and Brainspotting, and other times where it feels right to move, or yell, say something that feels important, and describe stories and experiences that are moving through your body.
Somatic work FAQs
What do I need to do to prepare?
You can come to therapy exactly as you are and you don't need to do anything to prepare for times when we include somatic practices. If you want to wear comfortable clothing you are welcome to. We can adjust any activity that might seem important to fit the moment.
What if I can't move or have pain?
There are many ways to include somatic work and experiences. It is very individual, and includes movement of and recognition for where your body is at, and nothing beyond what it can do in any given moment.
What if I try to avoid my body or find body sensations scary?
We never need to do anything that doesn't feel right. We can adjust any process we want to try, pause, take breaks, and explore what works for you and your body.
Does somatic work involve touch? Can we do it remotely?
Some somatic practitioners do use touch, and there are many (most even) forms of somatic work that don't include touch in any way, and typically will not in the work that I do. It is something we can do remotely, and something you can always choose to do or decline if I ask about it.
Have a question or want to schedule a session? Email me at rachel@drrachelrobbins for more information