CLINICAL (HANNA) SOMATIC EDUCATION
How and Why It Produces Definitive Improvements Beyond Symptom Relief
YOUR STORY, EVERYONE'S STORYWe all respond similarly to injury: we tighten up (involuntarily cringe).
Stress (in life and relationships) and repetitive motions (e.g., in our occupation) have similar effects: we tighten or get tight so often or for so long that our brain -- the master-control organ of our muscular system -- learns to hold muscles tight indefinitely, automatically, habitually, and ultimately, beyond our ability to relax them.
For example, a car mechanic may develop back spasms or neck pain; a haircutter may develop wrist and hand pain; someone with a stressful job or home life may develop headaches -- and of course, joint pain due to overcompression by tight muscles is common among the general population.
A person going through a life crisis may emerge with new tensions, restricted breathing, and low energy.
We forget how we used to be and get stuck in a strange new condition. The burn of muscle fatigue and stiffness become permanent. Inflammation, chronic fatigue, and joint degeneration commonly occur as long-term side-effects of that tension. Stress-related symptoms such as headaches or sciatica or other symptoms occur, seemingly inexplicably.
Despite these symptoms, including pain, we may have no injury. The injury may have healed, the life crisis may have passed, but we may remain stuck with the residue of injury and/or stress.
Because tight muscles cause pain and stiffness, because your brain controls your muscles, any therapy, to be effective, must address muscular activity at the brain (i.e., memory) level.
Somatic education has some advantages over drugs or therapy applied to soft tissue and joints: much less pain during therapy and faster improvement. In many cases, Hanna Somatic Education® is sufficient as a stand-alone rehabilitation method.
THE NATURE OF CHRONIC INJURIESIncidents of injury or stress leave their mark in memory as reaction patterns that occur on constant auto-pilot, as if the triggering incidents are still, in this moment, happening.
These reaction patterns show up as muscular tension patterns, pain and stiffness and a variety of symptoms given names like back pain, disc problems, osteoarthritis, bursitis, "regional muscular illnesses", "idiopathic pain", etc. These tension patterns are, in effect, "what we are doing wrong" -- but without control (involuntarily) and often without awareness.
In general, these memory-based reaction patterns displace and cause us to forget our sense of free and easy functioning ("sensory-motor amnesia" or S-M-A).
HOW CLINICAL SOMATIC EDUCATION FREES YOU FROM CHRONIC INJURIESClinical somatic education involves being guided into freedom from the grip of those reaction patterns. You're guided to do the involuntary actions voluntarily, to cause them to happen -- and to stop causing them to happen -- to do and not to do, both. You gain control over your full range of function. Noticeable and lasting improvements come quickly and comfortably -- typically many in the space of a single session.
You get free of habituated reaction pattern(s) and their symptoms.
Then, through somatic exercises, you develop patterns of free function that serve you effectively and comfortably.
Instead of pulling away from your condition, you go into it and master it -- comfortably -- a new approach.
The rest of how it works, including understanding reaction patterns and healthy (or more optimal) functional patterns, hands-on techniques and knowledge of somatic exercises, is the expertise of clinical somatic educators.
If pain persists when injured tissue should already have healed, if pain mysteriously appears and disappears, or if it worsens over time or defies diagnosis by your doctor, you may have such a muscular tension problem.
At the first visit, a Hanna somatic educator can determine whether you are a good candidate for the procedure and the number of sessions required (average, five, depending upon the number of injuries you have had in your life). In general, even conditions deemed "permanent and stationary" improve quickly.
Some conditions can be healed by using the self-teaching resources available, on this website.