Trauma release exercises


English: Thai massage Polski: Wykonywanie masa...

English: Thai massage Polski: Wykonywanie masażu tajskiego (Photo credit: Wikipedia)




Earlier in the week I experienced my first Thai massage (see post).  Marilyn, the masseuse, loaned me a book about releasing trauma from muscles:  The Revolutionary Trauma Release Process by David Berceli, PhD.  I read a little and then looked at the final section where there are instructions with pictures for doing the exercises to release trauma.  The book itself wasn’t grabbing me but the exercises sure did.

So today for my peaceful Sunday I decided that letting go of some of the deep stuff that keeps hanging on would be my choice for being peace.  As I often do, I have a few complaints about lack of instructions for beginners and lack of some kind of slow build.  I do yoga postures often that cover most of the muscles being worked on and these exercises were tough for me.  I know many of my students would need a much slower process of working up to all the reps and the long holds.  There are also a couple of places where the picture shows, say, one foot lifted in the air, but nowhere do the instructions tell you to lift a foot.

That said, the final piece–in which you hold a reclined cobbler’s pose and keep moving your knees up–where you allow your muscles to quiver and shake to release trauma was amazing.  I’ll have to do this for a while to complete the process but just on day one I can feel a difference, particularly in my pelvis and low back.  It also unleashed a dramatic burst of energy throughout my body.  I love any technique that helps people to take care of their own issues; bodywork can get to be very expensive if you have a long-lasting problem so anything that moves it along faster or allows you to deal with the problem yourself is okay by me.

Once I’ve done that a bit more I’ll write up a set of instructions that include a more step-by-step approach to building the ability to do them and suggested modifications.




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12 thoughts on “Trauma release exercises

  1. I did my meditation for peace in a hot vinyasa yoga class yesterday. I spent the final 10 minutes breathing into peace — with the sweat running off my body, it felt like I was releasing pent up energy that was being expunged naturally! A glorious feeling!

  2. I’m so happy to hear you’ve found Tension and Trauma Release Exercises. There is lots to be found in the entire book about the how and why these exercises work. I stumbled upon the book several years ago and taught myself the exercises. After 4 months of irregular practice, I knew it was something exciting. I found a certified practitioner to guide me through more skillfully and decided to become certified myself. I’m curious to see how your own process unfolds. Thanks for sharing your experience

  3. Thanks to your post I googled the trauma and release exercises and found Berceil’s work. I watched several youtube videos and decided to download the instructional video from from the Namaste website. I tried it out today. I’m afraid I didn’t do the walk pose long enough, but still after doing mostly the whole exercise I felt extremely light. I hope to try it again tonight with my husband. I would so much like to hear your own experiences. I’m going to look more into your blog now. Since it says bluegrass notes, does that mean you are in Kentucky? I am.

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