We know from the work of Peter Levine and others that sometimes our emotions and experiences get lodged in our bodies. Given the connection between the mind and body, it can be very effective to bring the body into the therapy process.
Somatic Experiencing is one such approach where the therapist helps the client to tune into the physiological experiences that may be present as emotions and experiences are processed in therapy. This allows any incomplete responses to be released in a controlled way in the context of therapy. These releases can assist the client in healing from past experiences that may have been traumatic. I have completed three years of study and supervision in this approach and am awaiting my certificate to become a SEP.
Additionally, some clients may benefit from direct touch to assist further in regulating the nervous system. Somatic touch takes the SE healing directly to the body. Only if the client desires - the client will lay on a massage table - fully clothed - and the therapist will place her hands on safe areas of the body, such as the arms, legs, shoulders, back. The direct touch of certain areas of the body can bring an even deeper experience of healing. This is voluntary and there is no expectation that clients participate in this approach if they are not interested.
Further information on this approach can be found at www.traumahealing.org.