Body-oriented therapies place more emphasis on the body–mind interconnection than most other psychotherapeutic approaches. While the majority of psychotherapy approaches are verbal and many are cognitively focused, body-oriented therapies are holistic, concentrating on both the body and the mind. Body-oriented psychotherapies are generally experiential, here-and-now, and somatic approaches that rely on the body’s innate wisdom and processes to resolve difficulties.

Body symptoms are seen as creative messages of emotional and psychological pain or indications of patterns of responses to distress or trauma. Body-oriented therapies tend to work within the concept of somatic memory: The body itself stores memories and feelings outside the conscious mind. Body symptoms and expression mirror emotional and psychological issues. Thus, changes facilitated in the body will affect emotions and beliefs.

A client’s movement, ...

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