Clinical Somatic Therapy is a hands-on therapy that utilises neuromuscular retraining to alleviate chronic pain and improve physical function and mobility. It increases motor control and sensation, and changes learned muscle patterns.
Clinical Somatic Therapy is especially useful for chronic conditions resulting from trauma, stress and repetitive movement. When there is no trauma involved most often pain, tension, stiffness, and structural damage are a result of the way we habitually use our bodies, how we stand and move on a day to day basis.
These signs are based on the muscle patterns we have learned throughout our life and is purely subconscious. Stretching, strengthening, and bodywork such as massage and chiropractic can help, but will not change these learned patterns.
How does Clinical Somatic Therapy work
Clinic Somatic Therapy relies on your active participation to provide sensory feedback to your brain as well as to muscles and nerves.
It is designed to teach you how to release chronic muscle contraction, improve your posture and movement, to alleviate pain and prevent further damage to your body.
Slow, gentle, intentional movements are used to release chronically tight, unconsciously held muscle tensions. These movements are the essence of a modality called pandiculation.
We will provide you with a self-care movement regimen which you can use at home to reinforce the changes learned in the sessions.
This regimen will allow you to discover and eliminate your chronic patterns and removes your dependence on treatments and medication for pain management. The goal is always to empower you to look after your health.
How many sessions are required?
Clinical Somatic Therapy is a re-patterning process, and as such, it is not a quick fix. To see and feel the benefits it is important to come for a short series of 60-minute sessions.
This allows us to re-pattern your muscles and does so over a period in which the brain learns how to relax and reset your tight muscles. The goal is to provide you with the necessary tools to improve your posture, movement and function on your own and to know how to come back to a state of comfort.
Training and Certification
Training for Clinical Somatic Therapy takes three years. Time is scheduled for practical application of the skills learned, personal and professional study, practice and further learning. This includes anatomy and physiology, kinesiology, neurophysiology, diagnostic and clinical techniques specific to Clinical Somatic Education.
Once certified it is necessary to complete ongoing education.
The first three modules look at postural disorders of the spinal-pelvic centre (trunk), the neuromuscular imbalance known as sensory-motor amnesia, and the stress that affects the spinal-pelvic centre.
The techniques in these modules are effective in eliminating chronic pain of the back and neck, headaches/migraines, scoliosis, sciatica etc. Once a practitioner has completed these three modules they have a system of physical tools that allow them to work with a broad spectrum of clients.
These first three components look at the neuromuscular and postural changes as a result of:
- The Landau reflex - When the Body Arches,
- The trauma reflex - When the Body Tilts
- The startle reflex When the Body Stoops
The fourth module is a more in-depth look at how the spinal-pelvic centre affects the extremities and how the extremities change the spinal-pelvic centre. This immersion looks at disorders of the extremities from a somatic educational view such as frozen shoulder, tendonitis, carpal tunnel, TMJ syndrome, and pain and functional issues involved with the hips, knees and feet.
The fifth component is a further look at gait and physical education to improve mobility, balance and reduce pain. This component also focuses on an overview and integration of the previous somatic techniques.
For full certification, students complete an exam (70% pass rate). Also, students write two papers giving their best and worst case studies. Students also prepare a final paper over-viewing the somatic and peripheral nervous systems and how they relate to their professional practice.