July 22, 2024


Nurturing Whole Body Health

Body Psychotherapy — Questions About the Scientific Validity — Part II

In Europe, for any modality within psychotherapy to be accepted as “scientific,” it must answer the 15 questions (listed in Part I of this article). In the United States, however, body psychotherapy is still viewed askance by many traditional psychotherapists. They do not realize that body psychotherapists are uniquely educated and highly skilled practitioners with a keen working knowledge of the mind-body-spirit connection.

Below is a response to question # 13.

13. Please provide evidence that your approach describes and displays a coherent strategy to understanding human problems, and an explicit relation between methods of treatment/intervention and results.

“Although each modality of Body Psychotherapy may use a different specific strategy, there are some elements common to the field as a whole.
– 1. Observation of the body to determine physiological underpinnings of neurotic and psychotic character structures and emotional patterns.
– 2. Touching the body in specific ways designed to release bodily armouring, release neuromuscular tension, and promote less restricted movement.
– 3. Eliciting verbal responses and emotional catharsis as the body lets go of habitual tension patterns connected to memories and mental blockages.
– 4. Partnership between Body Psychotherapy practitioner and Body Psychotherapy client/patient in interpreting and evaluating the meaning of verbal, emotional and imaginative responses.
These strategies are felt to lead to greater wholeness and general integration as seen by:
– 5. Body Psychotherapy clients/patients develop a more coherent, cohesive and integrated sense of self, better able to cope with life.
– 6. Body Psychotherapy clients/patients gain control over their emotions, become focused on their goals, and accomplish life tasks with renewed energy, vigour and confidence.
– 7. Body Psychotherapy clients/patients learn to confront and handle their problems as they arise, communicate authentically with peers, co-workers, friends and family, and as a result create more fulfilling and satisfying relationships, including marital and other intimate love relationships.”

These are just a few examples of the way in which Body Psychotherapy understands human problems, and designs coherent strategies for use towards specific outcomes.