Counseling in Brooklyn and Virtual
  • banner image

    Somatic Therapy

    Somatic psychotherapy takes a holistic approach to healing and wellness by recognizing the deep connection between the mind and body. This therapeutic approach acknowledges that emotional and psychological issues can manifest physically, leading to symptoms such as tension, chronic pain, or other bodily discomforts. Somatic therapists believe that the body holds onto unresolved trauma and emotions, which can be addressed by exploring and releasing these sensations.

    Central to somatic therapy is the belief in the body’s innate ability to heal itself. When we encounter a distressing event or trauma, the body responds with a “fight, flight, or freeze” response. In some cases, this response may not be fully discharged, leaving the body in a state of dysregulation and leading to various symptoms like anxiety, depression, chronic pain, and other physical ailments. Somatic therapy aims to help individuals complete this natural healing process by safely and gradually releasing the trapped energy from the nervous system.

    Key Features of Somatic Therapy & Healing

    Body-Centered Approach: Somatic therapy focuses on your physical experiences, sensations, and bodily responses to understand and heal emotional wounds.

    Non-Verbal Techniques: Unlike talk therapy, somatic therapy may incorporate non-verbal techniques like breathing exercises, movement, or guided imagery to facilitate healing and self-awareness.

    Trauma-based somatic therapy emphasizes the importance of releasing stored trauma and emotional tension from the body to promote overall well-being.

    What Does a Somatic Therapy Session Look Like?

    In a somatic therapy session, you can expect a compassionate and client-centered approach that prioritizes your unique needs and experiences.  Depending on the type of somatic therapy being used, your therapist may guide you through various body-focused exercises, mindful movements, and breathwork techniques to help you connect with your bodily sensations and emotions. Through this exploration, you’ll gain insight into the mind-body connection, release emotional tension, and foster self-awareness. 

    At Grater Therapy Group, all of our therapists are trauma-informed, meaning you can expect a safe and supportive environment for connecting with your body. Your therapist will help you to express yourself freely, encouraging a deeper understanding of yourself. Each session is tailored to your individual journey, promoting healing, personal growth, and holistic wellbeing.

    Dance-Movement Therapy

    Dance-Movement Therapy is a type of somatic therapy where we resource into the body to explore, express and honor all of our parts and deepest truths. Every experience we’ve ever had is recorded and held in the body. When we tap into the body’s wisdom through movement explorations, materials stored deep within can surface to be witnessed, learned from, and integrated. This process can lead to profound insights, integration, healing and growth.

    Dance-Movement Therapy has helped clients feel more connected, gain clarity and understanding on issues they may be struggling with, explore relationship patterns, feel a greater sense of comfort in their bodies and in their lives, transform trauma and fear, and reconnect with their natural spontaneity, to name a few of it’s benefits.

    Sessions are always a co-created journey, set within the context of safety, respect and open communication.

    Authentic Movement

    Authentic Movement is a form of Dance-Movement Therapy that we may use in sessions. In this practice of intuitive movement, movers move with eyes closed in the presence of a witness (the therapist), following their inner impulse to move and be moved. This process of moving, deeply attuned to oneself without planning or performing, allows the materials stored deep within the body – emotions, stories, images, memories, dreams – to surface, be expressed and explored, and ultimately embraced. As the body finds form for the expression of what is at first formless, integration is promoted and personal consciousness evolves. 

    Authentic Movement helps:

    – to gain clarity and understanding of various life issues one may be grappling with, 

    – to feel more present in one’s life,

    – to feel more alive in one’s body, 

    – to feel more free in one’s expression.

    No previous experience in dance or Authentic Movement is needed.

    Ricki Grater, LCSW, BC-DMT and Kris Rodriguez, LCAT specialize in Dance-Movement Therapy.

    Career Consulting for Somatic and Dance-Movement Therapists

    Becoming a Dance/Movement Therapist is a unique journey. It’s often a path we are compelled to take even if we don’t know exactly where we’re going or how to get there. We feel the call. A soul calling. Like dance itself, an impulse we can’t deny or keep stuffed inside.

    From that first consideration to the first step, from navigating grad school and agency work to maybe taking a leap onward to something more, it’s all a little daunting and definitely not the norm. You may feel like you have to leave all that was familiar behind and step into the unknown in order to find yourself. Support and guidance is hard to come by.

    At a certain point you may realize that the untraveled road only forms with each step you take. You may find yourself an accidental pioneer in uncharted territory.

    Career consulting for Dance/Movement Therapists is a unique service offered by Ricki Grater LCSW, BC-DMT to help support you as you forge your path.

    What our Somatic Therapy clients have to say:

    “Dance Therapy became for me a safe haven for free-spirited expression, which allowed me to mentally and emotionally take a very deep cleansing breath. I was able to explore and celebrate the beauty of my own soul.”

    – Pam, artist

    “Dance Therapy helped me begin to unlock the shackles which had imprisoned my spirit.”

    -Tanya, small business owner

    “Authentic movement allows my body to become engaged in the dialogue and gives my mind permission to stop chattering so I can become more attentive to the underlying messages and stories laying dormant beneath the surface. In Authentic Movement, I have learned how to feel deeply into the needs of my body without question or judgment and to trust that I will experience all that is necessary in that moment.”

    -Jeanne, psychotherapist