As well as training in Craniosacral Therapy and many of its fields of application, training in the following therapeutic approaches has helped me develop the way that I work now.
Knowing how to work with trauma (overwhelm), when it is present in a person’s history, is vital in order to avoid re-traumatisation. Working with trauma requires a completely different approach to working where no trauma is present. Peter Levine, Stephen Porges and Babette Rothchild have been extremely helpful to me in developing a body based approach to working with trauma.
- Trauma Healing Peter Levine’s site. Peter Levine has been a major figure in understanding and developing a way of working with people with trauma. The method he developed is called Somatic Experiencing and there are practitioners throughout the world. He is author of the excellent books Waking the Tiger and In an Unspoken Voice.
- Somatic Trauma Therapy Babette Rothchild’s site. She is author of The Body Remembers and the 8 Keys Self-Help series of books
- David Baldwin’s Trauma Information Pages a large resource on trauma work.
Based on his research into what makes the difference between therapeutics work being successful or not, Professor Eugene Gendlin developed a system called “Focusing”. This seems to me to be a key theoretical understanding and practical approach for anyone who is working with the psycho-emotional process in body-based therapy.
- Focusing Eugene Gendlin’s own site
- Focusing Resources Ann Weiser Cornell’s site, a well known advocate and author of “The Power of Focusing” which is arguably the best book on the subject.
- British Focusing Association a UK site, which includes the focusing teachers in the UK
At long last, the value of mindfulness has entered the mainstream of western culture. It is a foundational practice for most therapeutic approaches which involve the body and mind. I taught meditation, mindfulness and stress management for many years in the 1970s.
- Thich Nhat Hahn is a Zen Master who has done a huge amount to spread the value of mindfulness.
- Jon Kabat-Zinn is probably the main person who brought mindfulness into the main stream of western culture.
Nonviolent Communication(Compassionate Communication)
NVC is based on an understanding that all humans have the same needs but employ many different strategies to get their needs met. Conflict often arise at the level of these different strategies that people adopt, possibly to meet the very same needs. Understanding and empathy arise once deep listening clarifies what needs people are actually trying to meet. A very helpful practice for one’s self too.
- The Center for Non-Violent Communication is the site started by the founder, Marshall Rosenberg
- Nonviolent Communication – UK Community Website
5 Rhythms Movement Practice
There are many forms of movement practice. The most helpful for healing are those that help us bring our attention to the natural expressive movements in our bodies. Free expression of our internal dancer taps into the inherent health of the body and its willingness to restore health and wellbeing. One of the best forms of dance I know that does this is the 5 Rhythms movement practice.
- 5 Rhythms Gabrielle Roth’s site – the woman who developed the 5 rhythms practice
- Dancing Tribe Scotland Scottish 5 Rhythms and associated movement practices
Arnold Mindell has come to incredible insights based on Taoism, modern physics and Jungian psychology. It gives a helpful approach to understanding and working with energetic process generally, whether that be in the body, in the mind, in groups, in society or in nature generally.
I was introduced to Polarity Therapy by Franklyn Sills in the early 1980s. I had been looking for a therapy which was energy based bodywork, which challenged boundaries but respected them and which was open to a spiritual understanding of life. I found all that in Polarity Therapy and I practised it professionally for 10 years before I retrained in Craniosacral Therapy.