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Living Somatics

Living Somatics is a system of neuromuscular education and a movement awareness practice. This work teaches us to recognize and release holding patterns and chronic pain resulting from injury, stress, repetitive strain, and habituated posture. Through this work, you will increase your sensory abilities, improve your posture and self-use, address tension and pain, and support overall health and wellbeing.
Living Somatics gives you back the ease, comfort and agility you may remember from childhood. During this process you will learn to access freedom of movement and embody your best self through this awareness process. Overall, the sense of self is cultivated, enabling healing and transformation.  The movements are slow, mindful and mostly done lying on the floor. The primary focus is on finding ease and comfort. The quality of movement takes priority over its form and this is achieved by a focus on how we use ourselves during the lesson. This process enables an improvement of the function of our nervous system. 
You can work privately with a Clinical Living Somatic Educator in a hands-on session, in a group movement lesson or on your own with a self-practice.  Clinical Living Somatics is a gentle, non-invasive approach to address acute and chronic pain, and to promote self-healing. It is an innovative neuromuscular hands-on modality, most often practiced in a one-on-one session. Working with the principles of Somatics and the clinical hands-on techniques facilitates the body's natural ability to improve its function and organization. Within this method, we discover the path of greatest ease and least resistance, enabling the system to find its way to optimal health. 

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With the clinical hands-on work, a case history is taken, an in-depth assessment is made, and a plan is created, tailored to the specific needs of the individual client. As part of each session, the client is taught a self-care practice involving somatic movements that they are encouraged to do at home to maximize the benefits received during the table work.
In this work, we identify and transform postural habituations to regain the fullness of our movement potential. In general, most people at some point experience the effects of these holding patterns. More often than not, we experience a combination of these habituations. Through Living Somatics we learn how to unwind tension, trauma and pain.

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The Main Somatic Habituations

The “Go Response” (Green Light Reflex)

The extensors of the back body that propel us forward, are what we call the muscles of the green light reflex. When this back body chain gets tight from chronic over-activation, the lower back becomes excessively arched. 

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    This can cause mechanical or structural changes, possibly leading to disc prolapse and other complications. When working with the green light lesson, and specifically the posterior muscle chain mentioned above, some profound changes may take place. The muscles that once were chronically tight soften and the excess arch of the lower back reduces. With a combination of clinical lessons and self-practice, in time the low back pain often magically disappears.

The “Startle Response” (Red Light Reflex)

This reflex is when the muscles of the front body, that bend us forward (the flexors), are chronically tightened over time. It is also known as the startle response as it is associated with chronic unresolved fear and anxiety.

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    The head and neck protrudes forward, the posture is slumped with a sunken chest and rounded shoulders. In addition, the breathing becomes shallow, and the hip and knee joints may feel sore or painful. By working with the clinical hands-on lesson for this habituation, we release the chronically contracted muscles around the neck, shoulders, chest and pelvis. The benefits of unwinding the startle response is a renewed upright posture and improved breathing.

The “Cringe Response” (Trauma Reflex)

This reflex is initiated when there is a trauma to the side of the body, such as a fall, an accident or an operation. The muscles of the side body contract and go into protection mode, and in time they become painful. 

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    This guarding response to the injured area is useful in the short term, but not so in the long term. By working with the Trauma Clinical Lesson, we teach the nervous system of the client to come out of this pattern, and find the way back to healthy pain-free neutral posture. The practice of Living Somatics can help all who wish to improve the quality of movement in their lives. Most come to this work because they have discomfort in their body. With some regular practice the discomfort goes away and a sense of ease is restored.

If you would like to explore how Living Somatics can help you, send us a message to set-up a 15-minute free consultation.

Some of the common conditions that are helped by this work:

Lower and upper back pain Painful joints and muscles Neck and shoulder pain Sciatica Hip, knee and foot pain Knee ligaments tear or strainRepetitive use injuries

Poor posture Scoliosis Accident traumas and whiplash Thoracic outlet syndrome Spondylosis Disc problems Sacro illiac pain

Osteo arthritis Headaches TMJ syndrome Frozen shoulder syndrome Pelvic floor issuesBreathing problems

This is a partial list. If your condition is not listed above, and you wonder if this work can help you, please contact us. The benefits of this work go much beyond the physical. If you are curious about how Living Somatics can help you, send us a message to set-up a 15-minute free consultation.

Testimonials

“What began as a practice to eliminate chronic pain has evolved into a practice that enables me to know myself more deeply. The slow, gentle movements have led me into hidden corners within my body and soul, and enlivened them. I have grown stronger and more centered and become more open to the possibilities that arise in my life. Not only did I learn how to come out of physical pain, I have also developed my capacity for compassion toward myself and others.”

Kathleen Anderson de Miranda,Yoga Educator and Living Somatics Movement TeacherEnglish Communications Consultant, Sweden and USA

“In Living Somatics I found a pathway to better self-sensing, well-being, and conscious living. When I met Gayatri and Siddhartha, little did I know how much my life would change. Not only did somatics give me relief from pains and previous traumas, but it also gave me a new meaning in life and a strong desire to dedicate myself to sharing this work with others so they can discover the same benefits for themselves.”

Aliona Bespalenko,Physiotherapist and Rehabilitation Specialist, Translator and Interpreter, Singer, Musician and Songwriter, Voice Coach, Ukraine

“My discovery of Living Somatics began with a movement lesson for the pelvic floor. This was the beginning of a wonderful meeting with my own body and its abilities, and also with the felt sensation of safety and comfort. I was stunned by the respect and ethics with which the body is treated in Living Somatics.”

Natalia Avramchuk,PhD, Psychologist, Dance and Movement Therapist, Ukraine