The body is incredible. It takes shock after shock, blow after blow and yet it adapts around injury, compensates, armours itself and gets on with the job. But there can come a time when an injury is the straw that breaks the (human’s) back. Where what was once mild discomfort becomes limiting pain. Where the vaguely aching hip becomes a crippling limp. The layers of injury accumulated over the years have come to a head and the body can take no more; it is asking – begging – for help.
When we look at someone’s body with all its injuries and pain, what do we see? A machine that has gone wrong or a complex and subtle interconnection of mind and body, energy, emotion and spirit? And if the latter, then why would we just treat the body?
The body has a powerful, innate ability to self-heal but when it reaches a certain point, it will benefit from help. The more the therapist is able to tune into the needs of the body and the needs of the client emotionally, the more holistic the healing will be. The more subtle and intuitive the help is, the faster will be the response, providing of course that the client is able to trust and relax with the therapist; this is not always so and the more ‘closed’ clients will take longer to help.
Let us look at a neck whiplash injury. The client may have had many small strains to the neck muscles throughout their life, due to other car accidents or severe falls. None of these may have left their mark long term, so why does this one last accident – which does not have to have been a severe one – leave them in such pain? The answer is, of course, that the area of the body weakened by previous injury will be the most vulnerable to the next trauma, only this time that trauma may constitute that ‘last straw’ and the body be too damaged to heal itself.
A whiplash injury – as with the results of all injuries or indeed life experiences – is more than physical. The pattern of the trauma is held in the soft tissues of the body; if this damage caused can be released physically, the emotional memory will surface and clear; in this way a complete healing is effected, not just a physical easing of pain.
How can this be done? The most natural technique I have ever found in my search for effective ways of releasing trauma from the body is Bio-Mobility. This technique came from Arthur Pauls’ Ortho-Bionomy; an osteopath’s realisation that long term structural stability could not be achieved whilst the soft tissues retained the traumatic memory.
Homeopath Maureen Arnold took Ortho-Bionomy and developed it into Bio-Mobility. This is a powerful yet subtle method of releasing physical damage by replicating the movement/position in which the body was originally injured. This replay, combined with gentle pressure on key points, enables the body to release the muscle-holding patterns which are distorting natural alignment. This release restores the circulation of energy and blood to the area and thus stimulates self-healing. In this way, not only can muscle ‘knotting’ be eliminated but the whole body realigned and compensation patterns corrected. Each treatment takes 1½ to 2 hours as the whole body must be worked in each session.
As a massage specialist, it was natural for me to combine Bio-Mobility with deep-tissue massage, which I find adds even greater depth to the treatment. Added to that is Body Unwinding – facilitating the body’s natural ability to spontaneously unwind, replaying the movements of the accident/fall etc. Which have created injury – and Body Scanning. The latter is the assessment of the body through one’s senses; visual, tactile and intuitive. This combination of techniques is known as Body Realignment.
Body Realignment treats the whole person, ‘body and soul’. A beginner can learn to simply realign bodies, and in itself that is already invaluable; inevitably there is usually some emotional release as the body lets go of its abnormal ‘holding patterns’ (even if that release occurs through dreams, as is often the case with clients who find it hard to show their emotions). With experience comes a deeper communication between therapist and client that goes way beyond touch. Not everyone will be open to this, but when they are, the release is profound. Even if all someone wants is for you to fix them mechanically so that they can get on with their chosen sport, well that is in itself satisfaction enough and if they have emotional releases or odd dreams, they will probably not equate it with the healing process. But for those who sense the potential healing available to them, who will trust and allow us to work with them at a level where touch is at its lightest and communication at its deepest; there lies the greatest reward – for all of us.
Jan Trewartha is a Body Realignment therapist and Energy Field therapist who originally trained as a State Registered Nurse. She is founder of the Body in Harmony School of Massage and Bodywork. Post-graduate diploma courses in Body Realignment and Advanced Body Release are run by the school, which is BCMA and APNT affiliated. Tel: 0772 402 7748 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org for further information, or see: www.bodyinharmony.org.uk.