Clinical Somatics was the way out of chronic pain for me and my passion for sharing this modality led to my training with the Somatic Movement Centre. Much later, I heard the ‘Tell me about your Pain’ podcasts and just sensed immediately how much this approach had to offer and I completed a certification in Pain-Reprocessing Therapy with Alan Gordon’s Pain Psychology Centre.
At the heart of this understanding is that in many cases of chronic pain, the fear of pain drives and amplifies the pain cycle. There are solid tools such as mindfulness, somatic tracking and accessing safety that can help develop a very different relationship with pain such that its volume decreases and diminishes.
Clinical Somatics makes movement safe, down-regulates the nervous system and is just the most wonderful practice for releasing the bracing that happens in response to fear of pain as well as chronic muscular tension itself which is a big player in the chronic pain picture.
We also learned the importance of developing the skill to access positive sensations. When stuck in a fear-pain-fear cycle, this become very hard to do. If we make somatic movements small and pleasurable, we can slowly begin to access the experience of positive sensations as we let go of long-held tensions and soak up the deep ease of being. In addition, the re-establishing of healthy and appropriate brain-body signalling that happens in Clinical Somatic movement releases habitually contracted muscles.
I bring both into my sessions now and both approaches are so empowering. It is all about your own agency, exploring your own lived-reality of pain slowly and carefully, while bringing kindness and compassion towards the body and mind. There is a wonderful knitting together that begins to happen – these are synergistic modalities.