BODYWORK AND SOMATIC EDUCATION (BASE)
Psychological and emotional processes manifest physically through the physiology, structures and usage of the body. Sensory feedback of the bones, muscles, fascia and organs/viscera (i.e., interoception) provides information about our emotional state of being. That is, does the body signal alarm and arousal or safety and calm (neuroception)? If interoceptive systems signal discomfort, pain or distress, a person may enter into and stay in a heightened state of arousal or activation through a self-perpetuating positive feedback loop. This can result in intrapersonal challenges, relationship, work and educational problems, chronic pain, headaches, gastrointestinal problems, sleep issues, feeling detached, anxiety, PTSD and other difficulties.
The emotional, physical, and physiological distress described above may stem from a variety of challenges, including: pre and perinatal difficulties, attachment insecurity or disorganization, physical injury, sexual assault, emotionally toxic relational or societal factors, natural disasters, car accidents, surgery/anesthesia, suffocation, and other threatening circumstances.
Somatic psychotherapy and relational bodywork are essential for interrupting and changing this positive feedback loop and healing trauma. BASE™ practitioners who work with clients suffering from these conditions will have a greater sensitivity to follow or track what is happening in a client’s body and WHERE it is happening. Clinicians learn to refine attunement capacity and skill in specifically identifying activation/constriction in a client’s intrapersonal experience (i.e., the persons body). BASE™ practitioners know how to release this freeze/shutdown allowing expansion, capacity and ease. A new set of afferent information (‘interoceptive’ self) or body ego state develops to inform the brain. This can allow for greater resilience and choice—the opposite of a trauma response.