How to Release Physically Held Trauma

I’m always looking for ways of releasing stressful memories that get trapped in the physical body. Recently I came upon a system I’m really excited about. It’s TRE-Tension Releasing Exercises. TRE is a series of seven exercises you learn and then practice on your own without needing a therapist by your side.

Last week, along with a dozen others, I stretched out on a yoga mat to learn from TRE practitioner Judy Archer. Her husband Michael Jones provided background music throughout on his keyboard. In other words, it was a pleasant experience. Cost: $50.

In the three hours of the workshop we were taught to release the tension mainly in our feet, legs and psoas muscles. This releases the “natural tremoring response” in us. The idea of allowing the body to tremble in order to release physically held tension took me back to the 70’s and bioenergetics. In those days my bioenergetic practitioner was always trying to get me to shake. I was so invested in looking cool and collected, that there was no way I was going to tremble. This is exactly what we do in TRE. We allow the body’s natural way of releasing tension through shaking to take place.

Those of you who are familiar with Michael Levine’s work will know about this. In nature, when an animal has survived a terrifying life-or-death situation the animal shakes off the tension. I’ve written about Robert Sapolsky in this blog site as well.  (Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers) I’ve also written about Dr. Robert Scaer’s work with trauma and its effects on the body (The Body Bears the Burden).

If this interests you, here’s how to connect:

Judy Archer (Toronto)

For those of you not in the southern Ontario:

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