What is Body-Based Therapy?

Body-based Therapy is the generic name usually given to the different types of therapy I offer - Emotional Expression, Bioenergetics, and Rebirthing.

The essential principle behind Body-based Therapy is that it works directly with the body, creating rapid change without having to engage excessively with the thinking mind. Most techniques from Body-based Therapy therefore offer intense, emotional experiences that lead to rapid positive change.

3 types of body-based therapy

How Does Body-Based Therapy Work?

Working directly with the body is effective because every traumatic event, every unexpressed feeling, and every act of repression that we’ve ever been through is stored in the body at a muscular level. These stored areas of muscular tension are known as holding patterns. Body-based Therapy works directly on these holding patterns, at a muscular level, to allow all the trauma and repression to come out.

Most therapy, for example traditional psychotherapy, starts by working with the thinking mind.

If I was offering you psychotherapy, for example, I might start out by sitting you down, getting you to close your eyes and asking you to start to talk about your relationship with, say, your mother. Over multiple sessions, I would guide you deeper into this, and as you speak about your mother at some point your words might start to conjure up emotions. I would then allow these feelings, perhaps pain and sadness, to come out, and you would experience a level of what’s called catharsis – release. Or, over time, you might develop a better understanding of how your relationship with your mother has subtly influenced your life, creating some problems in relationships perhaps. You could then learn how to approach certain key life-situations differently so that you create better relationships with others.

This is psychotherapy, with a little CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy) thrown in at the end!

Now, if I was offering you Body-based Therapy, I might start out by getting you to put your body in certain stress positions and encouraging you to keep breathing through your mouth. As the tension builds I would ask you to keep yourself right on the edge of your comfort zone and to continue breathing deeply through your mouth. This starts to break open the muscular holding patterns. After some 10 – 20 minutes of exercises I might guide you into full-blown emotional expression, screaming and shouting, that is. After a few minutes of this you might find feelings of deep sadness naturally coming up and you can sit and cry, whilst receiving support. Afterwards you feel open and relaxed, a huge release having taken place.

Body-based Therapy doesn’t mess around and doesn’t take so many sessions. Even one session can move stuff that years of other therapies have left unresolved, because it goes straight to the heart of the matter.

Is Body-based Therapy suitable for Anyone?

No. That’s the short answer. If you have a significant psychiatric history or are on medication it probably isn’t for you. Essentially, if you process emotions in a significantly abnormal fashion, then Body-based Therapy may well not be suitable. If you are of an extremely nervous disposition and struggle with deep feelings, then also it might be better for you to do something less direct before giving something like this a try.

If you aren’t in these categories then you might well like to give it a try, especially if you are anyway up for intense experiences.

Who Is It Most Suitable For?

Clients for my work tend to come in different categories. Here are some…

  • People experiencing low energy or a lack of inspiration in life
  • People who really want to motivate themselves to get things done or get their life moving
  • People suffering depression who want to try a non-medication approach
  • People suffering chronic fatigue
  • People struggling with a psychological issue that doesn’t seem to shift
  • People who just want more out of life!

I Want to Go For It! What’s the Next Step?

  • Come along to one of my 2 hour Sunday sessions in Central Brighton. Events online here
  • Come along to one of my weekend workshops at Osho Leela in Dorset. Events online here
  • Send me an email for more information – devaraj227@gmail.com

Read more about Body-based Therapy techniques at these links

Emotional Expression


© 2016 Devaraj Nick Sandberg

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