A guide to help EMDR practitioners to integrate somatic therapy into their sessions.
Clients who have experienced traumatic events and seek EMDR therapists rely on them as guides through their most vulnerable moments. Trauma leaves an imprint on the body, and if clinicians don’t know how to stay embodied in the midst of these powerful relational moments, they risk shutting down with their clients or becoming overwhelmed by the process. If the body is not integrated into EMDR therapy, full and effective trauma treatment is unlikely.
This book offers an integrative model of treatment that teaches therapists how to increase the client’s capacity to sense and feel the body, helps the client work through traumatic memories in a safe and regulated manner, and facilitates lasting integration.
Part I (foundational concepts) offers a broad discussion of theory and science related to trauma treatment. Readers will be introduced to essential components of EMDR therapy and somatic psychology. The discussion then deepens into the science of embodiment through the lens of research on emotion, memory, attachment, interpersonal neurobiology, and the impact of trauma on overall health. This part of the book emphasizes the principles of successful trauma treatment as phase-oriented, mindfulness-based, noninterpretive, experiential, relational, regulation focused, and resilience-informed.
Part II (interventions) presents advanced scripted protocols that can be integrated into the eight phases of EMDR therapy. These interventions provide support for therapists and clients who want to build somatic awareness through experiential explorations that incorporate mindfulness of sensations, movement impulses, breath, and boundaries.
Other topics discussed include a focus on complex PTSD and attachment trauma, which addresses topics such as working with preverbal memories, identifying ego states, and regulating dissociation; chronic pain or illness; and culturally-based traumatic events. Also included is a focused model of embodied self-care to prevent compassion fatigue and burnout.
― Psych Central
“[W]ell written and informative and offers excellent techniques that practitioners can use. I recommend EMDR Therapy and Somatic Psychology for learning and creatively adapting EMDR.”
― The Milton H. Erickson Newsletter
“For everyone working with traumatized patients with issues ranging from frank PTSD to attachment disorders in personality presentations, anxiety, relational issues, body-related conditions, this is a valuable manual, more than just a book.”
― Metapsychology Online Review
“This pioneering book broadens the reach and enhances the efficacy of EMDR by masterfully integrating select body psychology interventions into EMDR protocols for the treatment of trauma. Providing an overview of somatic psychology theory and neuroscience, as well as accessible experiential exercises and techniques, the authors have written a landmark volume that will be of tremendous use to EMDR therapists everywhere who want to include the body in their clinical practice.”
― Pat Ogden PhD, Founder, Sensorimotor Psychotherapy Institute; author Trauma and the Body and Sensorimotor Psychotherapy
“Arielle Schwartz and Barb Maiberger have provided a groundbreaking, clear and comprehensive volume that integrates somatic psychology and EMDR therapy. It will enrich the practice of EMDR therapists by grounding them first, in the theory of somatic therapies and the science of embodiment and then introducing creative, somatic interventions. These clearly presented step-by-step exercises offer client and therapist specific paths through each of the eight phases of EMDR, helping clients be fuller, embodied participants in their work. It will be an important addition to your therapy library!”
― Carol Forgash, LCSW, Co-Author Healing the Heart of Trauma and Dissociation with EMDR and Ego State Therapy
“Rarely have I read such a comprehensive, balanced, thorough, and useful book for therapists of all kinds. Schwartz and Maiberger have struck a profoundly productive balance of theory and research with practice and application. Culturally inclusive and refreshingly cross-disciplinary, this book deftly clarifies the complexities of an embodied approach to healing. Whether you are new to the somatic field or well versed in it, this book will guide you and inspire you in your work.”
― Christine Caldwell, PhD, Professor, Somatic Counseling Psychology, Naropa University
“This is an in-depth approach to therapies meant to enhance embodied awareness, including EMDR, Somatic Psychology, yoga, movement, mindfulness, and bodywork. There are many wonderfully detailed and somatically grounded clinical protocols and guidelines. I was deeply touched by the authors’ compassion and wisdom about the embodiment of the human condition, including for those suffering from trauma, pain, and illness, and for the therapists/practitioners who are willing to commit themselves to a whole body, whole person engagement with the client.”
― Alan Fogel, Professor of Psychology Emeritus, University of Utah, and Rosen Method Bodywork Senior Teacher and Practitioner
About the Author:
Barb Maiberger is an author and EMDR trainer specializing in somatic therapies in Boulder, Colorado.
Arielle Schwartz is a psychologist specializing in body-mind therapies treating complex PTSD in Boulder, Colorado.