Clinical Somatics Testimonials
“After two years of level 6 pain daily and a very compromised lifestyle, I was absolutely at the end of my rope when someone posted a link to Clinical Somatics in a Facebook back pain support group.
In early 2018 I had torn my hip labrum. I spent a year lost in the dysfunctional Kaiser system and finally had a TJR in February 2019. I recovered quickly but was knocked on my keister by disc pain as soon as I went back to work. The months from April until November were a blur of doctors, MRIs, spinal epidurals, physical therapy, painkillers, ice, heat, and TENS, and nothing helped. It seemed as if I was headed for multi-level fusion surgery, and having had a failed lumbar laminectomy a few years back, surgery was not at all what I wanted to happen.
The Level One Course description made sense to me, and in 5 minutes I had enrolled and was doing the first day’s practice. That night I noticed I could reach things on the tables on both sides of my bed. Over the next few weeks all the pain, which I had been spending most of my life trying to manage, went away. I could hike with my dog on trails again, do gentle yoga, carry things, bend to reach things, and even dance. I have gotten my life back, the life I thought was gone for good.
I had been so discouraged after making the rounds from the surgeon’s office to PT to the pain clinic, seeing the same people in the waiting rooms month after month. Every time I hear someone talking about back pain now, I want to grab them and say STOP! Try this first.
I love the format of the course as well as the content. It’s easy to understand, and I love that you offer audio and video files for the movements. I appreciate the daily emails and the schedule that allows you to unlock the instructions for the movements as you progress. I’m pretty disorganized in general, but I have stayed on track with this without a hiccup. Incredible bang for the buck for my $45!“
“Kudos to Sarah and Somatic Movement Center!
After suffering several injuries to my body, including a back injury, my S-curved spine became more severe and painful. I tried various exercises, physical therapy and an online posture course for scoliosis. Short of having back surgery, recommended by an orthopedic doc, nothing worked. I started seeing a chiropractor three times a week for six months, now I’m down to once every two weeks. He helped relieve the severe back pain so I could function, but it was always a temporary fix. He wasn’t able to help with the sciatica pain.
Continuing my search for scoliosis courses/exercises, I hit the jackpot with the Somatic Movement Center. After the first month of doing exercises in the Scoliosis Course, my back and sciatica pain are basically gone. The sciatica pain only flares up occasionally if I lift a heavy object or sit on a hard surface. If the pain persists, I immediately do one of the somatic exercises with fairly quick results. My chiropractor told me to keep doing the Somatic exercises, which I have incorporated into my daily routine. In fact, after three years of chiropractic treatment, I no longer need to continue my visits. Thank you, thank you, thank you, Sarah, for this gift that keeps on giving!“
“I just wanted to express my gratitude for giving me my life back! After suffering from sciatic pain caused by a chronically tight iliopsoas muscle and uneven hips for almost a year, I have finally gotten relief. After about two to three weeks into the program, I started noticing a reduction in pain, and it just continued to decrease from there. I’ve spent thousands of dollars seeing chiropractors and multiple physical therapists, none of which were able to figure out my problem, let alone help me recover. Your program is truly remarkable and the results I got from such simple movements still astonishes me. I’ve been able to get back to running three to four times a week as well as strength training. I wasn’t even able to go for a mile or two walk with my wife and our dog after work prior to your program.
Thanks again for an amazing program – I can’t thank you enough!”
Since 2011 I have had treatment from podiatrists, physio’s, Osteopaths, acupuncturist, Bowen practitioners and tried a range of different exercises, mainly stretching. I have spent hundreds of pounds on orthotics and support shoes, although symptoms were relieved for a time they always came back, deep down inside I knew that the whiplash injury was to blame somehow.
The whiplash injury happened in 2007 which led to 8 months rehab, I thought it was over until 2011 when I was diagnosed with plantar fasciitis. Things went on over the years, my muscles building tightness, I developed lateral pelvic tilt which caused me to be totally debilitated with piriformis syndrome. Walking was so painful, I could no longer compete in Dog Agility competition which I love.
Then by a miracle…. I typed into Google “what causes muscle tightness” and this life changing course came up. Slowly over the weeks my pain disappeared, my body and the way I move has completely changed. I am now back competing in Dog Agility. We won our class this weekend, I can now run on full power!
THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH FOR GIVING ME MY LIFE BACK.”
“I have just finished the Level Two Course, including the individual downloads at the end of the course, after almost a year. There are really no words to describe the benefits I have received both physically and emotionally. I am so grateful to Sarah for offering such unique and personalized courses that allowed me to do the exercises at my own pace. Sarah was also always available to answer questions, help with accommodations to specific exercises, and encourage me to take my time, which was so helpful and necessary considering my special needs. I am 70 years old, and now I know how to release the pain in my neck, upper back, shoulders, arms and wrists. It’s quite amazing that I’m learning this wonderful skill at this late age. My stress and anxiety has reduced considerably, and I am able to see the benefit in my day-to-day interactions. I am walking straighter and with more ease, my posture has improved, and my pain decreased. Somatics has become part of my daily routine, and I’m learning to recognize how relaxing my muscles is key to my health and well-being. I am becoming more and more aware as I continue to practice; and I am eternally grateful.“
“I am LOVING your Somatics Level One Course!!!!! I am a dance teacher and have been living with constant pain and tension for the past 4 years that has been throughout the left side of my body. (I had a right knee injury in my 20’s that resulted in 4 surgeries, and I am now 48 years old.)
I have tried chiropractic, massage, acupuncture, ayahuasca, EFT, Healing Touch, Reiki, Positive Thinking, Yoga, Hypnosis…and NOTHING has worked to relieve / reduce the tension and pain for more than 1 hour. A few friends had suggested fibromyalgia may be the cause and I absolutely REFUSED to accept that death sentence.
And then, by some sort of synchronous chance, I came across Thomas Hanna’s Somatics book and I knew I found the key. It was the answer to why I was so tired all the time, and why I woke up in pain, spent the day in pain, and went to bed in pain, and why I was not improving.
I just completed day 22 of your course. In the waking hours, I am feeling better and better every day. My neck doesn’t click anymore. I am walking more upright. I can BREATHE deeply again!!!! The pain and tension have DRAMATICALLY improved and continue to do so and I can’t thank you enough for your online courses!“
“Ever since I have started somatic movement my body and life has changed.
I have c-PTSD and hyper mobile EDS with scoliosis and a leg length discrepancy. Since primary school I have been wobbly and weak in most of my body and yet been so stiff I couldn’t even remotely touch my toes. I was mocked as a child that I was a crippled old lady. I would collapse and faint and felt that I could barely carry my body around. Doctors told me I was lazy and weak and clearly didn’t want to participate in life. My body was in so much pain and my pelvis was so turned under I couldn’t even sit on my sit bones. Sitting still in class was painful, better if I could sit on my foot. If a teacher wouldn’t let me sit on my foot (many didn’t) I’d be in blinding cramps and pain. I sucked it up and pretended I was ok. As you can imagine, my days were incredible hard and I started with suicidal ideation. I found myself in massive depressions throughout my life. In my 30s I got a c-PTSD diagnosis and in my 40s I got my EDS diagnosis. Now I am getting help and am believed. I only have 7 percent digestive capabilities so I was also malnourished most of my life. I now have a lot of compassion for my childhood self.
Here is a blog post from a flareup https://lisaismightybrave.wordpress.com/2019/10/03/art-saves-my-life-every-day/
Last year I spent over 4 months completely in bed, only being able to stand for maybe 15 minutes twice a day. I moved my studio into my bedroom and I had two helpers do everything for me. Two things really helped me recover my life the Curable Pain App and your daily somatic movement course.
Somatics felt like an old lost best friend, and I started a daily practice. I do an hour in the morning two of each movement and 20-40 minutes in the evening on my tighter side. I’m different. I’m me. More me than I have ever been. The time also completely clears my mind so it’s like a lengthy meditation each day. I’m going to purchase the next level, but want to keep doing the delicious basic moves for at least a month or two before I add more.
I’m three months in, and even the day I had to spend at the hospital, I came home and did a full hour. My body craves it and in less then three months I have a better body than I ever have. By the time I’m 50 I’ll have the best body of my life. Thank you.
I’m a performance artist and last year we planned my performances so that they could be done by another person if I wasn’t able to. I like having this as a back up, but I now feel that I will be able to do my own performances moving forward.
Here is a blog post from three years ago, https://lisaismightybrave.wordpress.com/2017/04/25/road-to-human-realignment/ I’ve been craving this muscle release actively for many years. I had googled “leg length discrepancy” hundreds of times and I so glad three month ago it sent me to your website.
I’ll be in touch again and look forward to taking Level Two.
“I’ve spent many years trying to understand why I had problems with the joints in my body. After a few years of triathlon training and working as a spin instructor, I wasn’t taking care of my body or joints in the way I was supposed to be. Sarah’s compilation of various resources into one book has completely changed my perspective on what it means to have a healthy movement pattern and life. I cannot recommend The Pain Relief Secret enough, especially for health professionals that are open to another perspective and a new type of learning. Being a personal trainer and athlete, this has changed the way I look at the body and healing, so I thank you for that!”
“I have been practicing the Level One Course since August. I started this journey with major psoas issues (iliopsoas syndrome) and pain in my lower back, hips, and SI joints due to arthritis, bone spurs, and slipped disks in L3 and L4. After a few days the pain began to subside, my posture was better, and I could walk for longer distances than a few blocks. At this time I live relatively pain free. When I feel pain I practice the necessary exercises and that usually does the trick. Some days now I can miss a practice session and still be OK the next day.
For three years I lived with high levels of pain and could not walk longer than a few blocks as stated above. This practice is amazing! I have practiced and taught Yoga for many years and feel that Yoga was not suitable to help heal the pain I was in, in fact I believe that Yoga hindered the healing process. I now practice the somatic movements exclusively, with a downward dog and child pose thrown in here and there.
Thank you so much for your teaching. The video and audio are top quality and make it easy to learn and practice the movements. I look forward to Level Two.”
“Well, of course, the first thing I love about Clinical Somatics is that it works! Before taking Level One I had parts of my body I just ignored and worked around, never mind all the movements I could no longer do, I was functional. Now I use those parts of my body as they were intended–to help me move through my day more easily, gracefully and with less discomfort. I am 68, I live and work on a farm, and having my body work with me is big!
And the first thing I like about both the Level One and Level Two classes of Clinical Somatics is Sarah! She is truly the perfect teacher–she knows her subject, imparts it with love, precision and patience and is always encouraging. And her regular directive–let your one side of the body learn from the other side–offers astonishing possibilities.
But Clinical Somatics and Sarah have done more than just help me to get my body in a better working order. This process and Sarah’s approach to it has given me a kind of moving meditation that has permeated all parts of my day, I am in my body and in my day in an entirely more present and more fluid way. No wonder I am sleeping better at night. Thank you, Sarah!“
“I AM BLOWN AWAY by these exercises!!!!!! I was a ballet dancer during my developmental ages through college. I do Pilates, yoga, PiYo, and workout with weights at least 3x/week. I have always had pain but recently it started getting to the point I couldn’t walk, I couldn’t sleep, had trouble breathing and started to have to take some sort of ibuprofen or whatever I needed for that day. I do outside sales so I walk a lot and have bag on my shoulder 90% of the day. It was becoming unbearable and I didn’t know what I was going to have to do. I am also a single mother on top of that. Stretching failed, back surgery failed, chiropractors failed, acupuncture failed. I was at a wall. My lower back, neck and my right hip were becoming excruciating painful.
My mother, who suffers from back pain and right hip pain, found you on the internet and told me try this program. She even paid for the first level because she could see the pain I was having with every step.
Since I have completed Level One, I sleep better, I walk better, I breathe better, I no longer have to take anti-inflammatories or pain medication. I still have a ways to go, but I now have my life back. I have given your name to my pain doctor and pray he gives your information out to as many people in the same kind of pain I was in. I have never been in pain like that in my life and now I feel blessed that these movements and your website fell into our laps. I do the exercises every day now and am slowly returning to a very light workout as I am beginning to understand my body more and what it needs.
This has been such a wonderful, spiritual, and enlightening experience for me. Your blogs are wonderful too. They also help me dive deeper into my depths so I can understand my body more and more.
Thank you from the bottom of my heart as tears roll down my face as I write this to you. I can’t thank you enough!! Much love and blessings to you and your family.”
“I have lived with significant pain all my life after a near fatal hit and run accident. No amount of yoga, physio or pilates ever really enabled me to access the muscle tension and lack of alignment in my body as years of compensatory movement patterns had covered over the original trauma. This course has been life changing for me on many levels. The design of the course is perfect for introducing your body to the experience of releasing tension/stress layer by layer in such a way that you begin a whole new dialogue with your body and a brand new life experience. I now wake up refreshed and ready for the day instead of dreading it. I hope everyone who may be pushing themselves to achieve a life of ease and comfort finds somatic movement and in doing so gets to enjoy a healthier life and greater peace of mind. Thank you so much for such a wonderful course.”
“My experience with somatic exercises has been very rewarding so far. The most significant exercise has been the Washcloth, which has greatly improved the feeling and function in my shoulders. Some of the movements are very similar to things I have been doing for years (I have been in the fitness industry for almost 25 years), but this give me a different perspective from which to view some of what I have already been doing. It has already caused me to become more effective when working with people with chronically tight muscles and other issues.
The presentation of this information is wonderful as well and I have been consistently impressed with the quality of the information and the thoughtfulness of the class structure and resources. As much as I would have liked to learn some of the movements earlier, I greatly appreciate having to wait for each new movement. This process helps give enough time to give adequate attention to learning and practicing each new movement. Additionally, having the audio, video, and text content is great. So much content in the health and fitness industry these days feels slapped together as quickly as possibly, but you can tell that a lot of care was taken when putting this together and the user’s experience feels like it was important in the creation of this course.
I look forward to continuing to learn more of the movements and use them to improve my life and the lives of my clients.
“First and foremost I would like to thank you so much for your dedication to helping others with the program you designed and provided. I know you have helped so many including myself! I have been searching for over a decade and have had so many different conditions in my body causing stress, pain, and a downward spiral of my quality of life.
I became a yoga instructor but this only brought more pain and discouragement. It wasn’t until I was diagnosed with polymyalgia rheumatica that I knew my body could and would heal itself if I kept searching for answers.
And then by the grace of God I found Somatics!! I definitely want to continue with my progress and healing. And I would love to become certified so I can help others!!
Thank you again!!”
“Thank you Sarah. I feel so lucky that I stumbled across your site at a time I had been suffering with chronic hip pain for so many months. It was a time when I was at my lowest ebb and the pain I was experiencing was absolutely excruciating. During this time, despite having 3 MRI’s and seeing 4 different consultants/surgeons and countless physiotherapists, but was getting nowhere. Every one of them was telling me different things as to what was wrong, but there was never a definitive diagnosis. Until my pain started, I had always been pretty fit and healthy so it was a real eye opener to find out that the best medical professionals available could not even tell me what was wrong with me. This was until the last surgeon I saw told me I needed a hip replacement! I have always been very active and I was stunned to hear this news…I just wasn’t prepared to accept it and decided to do all the research I possibly could to find a better solution….and I am still thanking my lucky stars I came across your site. I am a Personal Trainer and at the time I was doing a course so that I could specialize in the rehabilitation of stroke survivors. Therefore, I was already aware of neuroplasticity, but hadn’t actually made the connection that this might also be key to helping myself out of pain. I’ve got so much out of the Level One and Two Courses – I still can’t quite believe I’m out of pain!“
“My daughter’s symptoms seem to line up with fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome. She has been through 3 rounds of physical therapy, acupuncture, cranial sacral therapy, chiropractic care, osteopathic treatments, 5 sessions of SOMA massage, and dietary modifications to try to treat her pain and fatigue. The only thing that has provided consistent results for pain relief is your Clinical Somatics program.
As her mom, it has been difficult to see her suffer for the last 4 years and not be able to find tools to relieve her pain so I am very grateful that you have made this program available! I purchased your book and look forward to reading more in depth about it and we have been mentioning your program to other friends we know who have various chronic pain issues. I wish more people knew about your program and how wonderful it is!“
“I am a qi gong teacher, and Clinical Somatics exercises have really helped me to become even more aware of my body. Since I have begun practicing somatics exercises regularly, I also notice that the flow of energy in my body during qi gong practice is much more intense. I feel my body as one, united, but I did not feel that before. I also practice transcendental meditation and I’ve found a correlation between TM and Clinical Somatics in terms of reducing stress in the nervous system. It happens many times that I transcend during somatic exercises.”
“I am so thankful that I found Somatic Movement Center! I was looking for ways to reduce the pain in my right hip and found your website. The exercises in your Level One Course helped me tremendously to relieve tension and pain in my lower back, strengthen my lower back, relieve tension and pain in my neck, shoulders, trapezius, and hips. And…what is the most extraordinary is my overall relaxed physical and mental body. I have had a paradigm shift in my thinking about how to keep myself healthy. And…I can do it from home in my own time. Thank you for your online course.”
“I have been through some bad accidents in my life. One of them was very serious as I got hit by a car while riding my bicycle. Luckily I just broke 6 ribs and 2 vertebrae but since then I feel that something is wrong with my body. I become weak during the years, my hips are not even and my back is in constant pain. I’ve been to every therapist on the market. Chiropractors, Osteopaths, Healers, Massages, Chinese medicine styles and more. Some of them did help but just for a short period of time. I did Iyenger yoga which supposed to be the Therapy yoga but it didn’t help me as well. Then I discover Somatics and one month after I feel the changes already. I become aware to my posture, to my sitting pose and I started to feel muscles I lost contact with. My joints become smoothers and generally I feel hope and happiness.
Sarah’s voice makes me calm and I enjoy listening to her talking. I practice every day, twice a day as I really feel and believe this method is intelligent and unique. I wish many people will hear about it as I know many people that suffer and don’t find a cure for the pain. Thanx a lot Sarah and keep on the good vibe!”
“I’m doing Level Two and I still can’t get past the 20-30 minute mark in the 60-minute Level One full class…. I end up falling asleep on the floor because so much tension is relieved! Hahaha. Every single time!
On days I don’t practice when coming home late from work, I’d be up until 3-4am tossing and turning in bed, clenching my teeth/jaw, sleep a couple of hours, wake up with a headache then feel tensed-up, tired, bloated, and cranky in the office the next day.
Prior to Somatics, I was doing private pilates classes 3-4x weekly for 3 years. During those sessions I feel great but within hours of stepping out the studio I’m back to the tightness and pain. Despite regular and challenging (also expensive) classes, results were not sticking and I still could not properly engage my core or reverse my hunched-over posture which was affecting my general physical and mental health. I started hating myself for failing to achieve the results that I desperately needed. I felt I had no control over my movements and my body parts just won’t cooperate.
Two weeks into Level One, I could start activating my core and rolling back my shoulders on most days. It’s been over 2 months since I started Somatics and I look taller, slimmer, feel lighter, breathe easier, think clearer, handle stress better, move steadier on my feet and somehow also a bit stronger from regular practice.
I’m so happy to be falling asleep on the floor and look forward to what Level Two can do for me. Thank you for making Clinical Somatics accessible!“
– Love and support from the Philippines!
“You have done an amazing job of putting your website together. You are an excellent teacher and I love that you back up what you say with science. I am grateful that you designed the Level One Course to help us integrate a lifestyle change which includes voluntary pandiculation and body consciousness.
Thank you for all the work, love and devotion you put into your teaching. I feel truly blessed that you have come into my life. And I look forward to continuing with the Level Two Exercises upon completion of Level One.”
“In February I was diagnosed with ME/CFS (myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome). I’ve been suffering with a build-up of stress over a number of years, suffering from very frequent and chronic headaches and migraines and frequent and severe neuropathy all down the right-hand side of my body, in particular in my neck, shoulder and hip but also in my arm, hand, little finger, knee, ankle, foot and little toe.
When I was finally referred to a specialist CFS practitioner she suggested somatics to me and I found your website and course. I signed up straight away.
I can honestly say that I’m getting a significant number of pain-free days now, and even on days when I have pain it’s less than it was. My hip and lower back have ‘unjammed’ and often my movements feel fluid in a way that I can’t ever remember feeling. The pain in my upper right rib-cage (from reading your blog I think it’s thoracic outlet syndrome) is almost 100% better as well.
I’m looking forward to continuing the exercises and hoping that as they progress they’ll ease the pain in my neck more than already, but I have to say that day-by-day you’re slowly changing my life. I have tried everything from medication to acupuncture, osteopathy, hypnotherapy and massage to get better. You’ve helped more than any of these things.
Thank you from the bottom of my heart.”
“Sarah, I am so glad that I found you. I became a somatic yoga instructor 2 years ago, and I am so happy I found you because I love the way you explain the movements. I have been very active all my life. I overuse my body. I was a professional Cuban marathon runner for 9 years, but I was a runner for 17 years and fitness and dance instructor since I was 20, and now I am 50. I’m still fit and strong, but I had a bad pain in my hips and after 4 days of practicing Clinical Somatics exercises I was fine. Now I follow your instructions every day, morning and night and still I feel more AMAZING. Thanks a lot Sarah. Every day I say you thank you in my mind. Thanks a lot again for your wonderful work. Your amazing website that I always learn something from. Almost every day I read one of your articles. You are awesome. Thanks again and again! I want to do your course to become a Certified Exercise Instructor so that I can help more people.”
“One realizes that Somatic Education really becomes an integral part of life. It’s easy to forget to do the exercises, or maybe only focus on an Arch & Curl daily, but then when you strain something or start to feel the stress creeping in, a thoughtful return to the breadth of the exercises Sarah has offered, does the trick. I feel as if I’m recalibrating my inner peace and my body thanks me for it. Thanks so much for your work, Sarah.”
“Recently I’ve suffered pain in my arms that was limiting my movement. Shortly after I signed up for your Level One Course, I received an email from you about Thoracic outlet syndrome. I recognized immediately that was my issue! The exercises have brought major relief, I’ve regained full movement in my arms; my posture is exceedingly better, I am more in touch with and appreciative of my 67-year-old body. I look forward to exercising daily, and experience heartfelt gratitude to you after each practice! Also, I have a deeper understanding of Thomas Hanna’s saying, “The human body is not an instrument to be used, but a realm of one’s being to be experienced, explored, enriched and, thereby, educated.”
“It is amazing how quickly this series of movements had an effect. I have done Tai Chi & Yoga for 4 & a half years, neither had the same effectiveness as Somatics. I am feeling less pain & the kink in my spine is healing. Sleep has improved, I am enjoying walks again. When the release comes I have experienced juddering, tears, laughter. I never yawned so hard in my life. All part of the healing process. 10 out of 10 with a cherry on top.”
“I am in far less pain physically & mentally [after practicing Clinical Somatics]. Which is a blessing in and of itself. I recommend somatics unreservedly. The Level Two Course is more intense. The postures had me go back to my Level One Course to strengthen the basics. My hips feel more even, my spine is straighter. I feel younger in myself after just 5 months practicing somatics. I have practiced almost daily, listening to how I feel internally/mentally.”
“This course was extremely good for me.
On the level of awareness: I became much more aware of my body; how do I move, what is happening when feeling pain…
On the level of flexibility: I feel my body is much more flexible. Actually, I became much more flexible to do my yoga practice.
Sleeping: As I am practicing before going to bed, I feel my sleeping is calm and deep.
Pain: I used to have pain in my right hip joint, lower back and neck. Now I feel myself much better, and even if pain happens, I know what can I do to feel much better.
Breathing: I feel that I am much better.
Stress: The daily practice giving me good feeling – for me it’s a meditation.
The training is not only helping me, but I also I used some of the exercises to help my children when having pain, mostly at the lower back. I also used some of the exercises with my students at the yoga class and it was so good.
Thank you so much for this wonderful course.”
“I just wanted to share how much I enjoyed the somatic exercises. I come to them as a yoga therapist with a long history of a personal movement/meditation practice, so I don’t have pain, but I have seen a release of tension in areas where I didn’t even realize I was holding and gripping, and this has led to even greater feelings of ease in my body. I also really appreciate the slow and attentive approach to practice–in yoga and in life in general, I fear that we rush from one activity to the next, with scarcely any time to reflect on where we’ve been, where we are, and where we are going. The somatic exercises are a real antidote to that haste and an invitation to be present and attentive to what is happening right now and to become aware of patterns of movement that may not serve us. From there it’s just a short step to examining patterns of thinking that do not serve us. So I believe in these exercises whole heartedly as both a movement practice and as a philosophical approach to moving through the world. I appreciate your clear and careful teaching, and the way in which you break down complex movement patterns into chunks that are easier to learn. I intend to do your certification course, as I think it will be hugely helpful in my work as a yoga therapist for clients with pain.”
“Level Two has been just as compelling as Level One in terms of personal discovery, particularly with many of the shoulder and upper torso exercises. For years, I have been under the impression that I had developmental scoliosis–my postural pattern included a raised left shoulder and a rotation in the upper body. But as I began to work with the scapula scoops and shoulder directions, my left shoulder blade and the whole left side of my body began to release. And in doing the proprioceptive side bending exercise, I suddenly realized that my torso was shifted left, and as I felt my joints stack up, the rotation and elevation on the left side of my body disappeared. I was astounded both at how simple this release was, and how I had, for years, misconstrued the nature of my postural pattern. From the exercises, I have developed a personal practice that keeps me from reverting to that long held postural habit, and even though I never had pain as a result of it, I feel so much more at ease in my body. Another completely unexpected outcome is that I am able to execute yoga postures that were completely unavailable to me, especially seated twists–and, I can do them with equal ease on both sides of my body, all from this very simple, powerful somatic work. In fact, I much prefer the somatic exercises to the yoga practice I used to do (and still do on occasion) as a preparation for seated pranayama and meditation. This work is life-changing, and I thank you heartily for making it widely accessible.”
“I LOVE Somatics! It has helped my lower back pain immensely and if I do it regularly keeps my tense shoulders relaxed and at bay. I also feel my nervous system letting go every time I do exercises. And finally it has helped my shoulder blade pain where nothing else has. Not only that but as a massage therapist I can see where Somatics could help many people with relief from their symptoms. Thanks for this program. I plan to learn more!”
“My great good news is that I have not yet even completed the first course and my high hip (“short leg”) has almost completely returned to normal positioning! After two years (this very month, oddly), I had forgotten how wonderful it feels to move around normally again. There is still work to be done, but with great promise!
What I really want to tell you is surprising to me because ironically the restoration of my hip and leg now seems the least of what I have gained from daily practice of these movements, and I do all the movements every day, including the standing awareness at the beginning and end of an hour and a half – best hour and a half of the day and best I have EVER spent or wanted to spend, and I do the Arch and Curl (the movement that seems to have my name on it) throughout the day and before bed too!
I have always been prone to anxiety, but in the past three years, I have had terrible anxiety over even the simplest of things, and these somatic movements have cured my anxiety well past ninety percent in just these few weeks. I suddenly have not only better control over my body but over my emotions as well. Best of all, I feel as though I have met a long awaited yet lifelong friend in these movements. I suddenly have a great faith in the future and a great faith in myself! I have finally met my own “functioning,” and at the same time, I finally see the flaws in much of what I have tried in the past, including Transcendental Meditation – I took the TM course directly from the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi when he visited his health center in Pacific Palisades in 1990, and I took yoga instruction there too, and over the years, practicing on and off, I have never experienced the profound physical and metaphysical effects that I have experienced in just these few somatic weeks – now that really tells me a lot! I only wish that I had known about Somatics long before now, and what is really sad is that I could have known, but I never heard of Dr. Hanna until I visited your site a month ago. What a pity this movement system is not more widely known and practiced – in schools, hospitals, prisons, corporate offices – the world would truly be a better place for all!
I especially like the independence in Somatics, just me and my nervous system, no paraphernalia (Thera-Bands, balls, etc.) and no gym torture machines (“no pain, no gain” rubbish). I even think that Somatics could eliminate acupuncture (acupressure/trigger points), which I now see is probably just piercing a contracted muscle with a needle (by the way, I had some digestive problems, which have cleared up also, and certainly the hip-pelvic area incorporates many significant meridian points).
One last thing to tell you also is that this practice has helped my self-esteem enormously in the sense that I have always been a slow, contemplative person – born for these movements! – but wow, does the world ever despise slowness and contemplativeness. If a person is not fast and forceful and multitasking, there is no respect! Well, I feel as though I finally have the last laugh – it is the fast and forceful multitasking that got me into this situation in the first place but then led me here too!”
“Somatics has brought back my quality of life. I have a spinal condition called spondylolisthesis with pars fracture (Grade II). The vertebrae between L5 and S1 sacrum has a stress fracture causing vertebrae slippage. What it entails for me: back pain, sciatica, protrusion of vertebrae (bump sticking out approx 1/4″ L5/S1), etc. My mornings and evenings would be the worst in terms of pain and discomfort. So I got into yoga to help manage the pain. It has worked, but always temporarily. I have been using the daily Somatics exercises consistently for the past two months. I can say without hesitation these exercises work. All the benefits as described here online and in my readings have been enlightening. Moreover, living without the pain and discomfort is life altering.“
“This course works for functional scoliosis! Muscle imbalances I’ve worked with for years, have diminished by taking this course. Slowing down and understanding pandiculation has made a huge difference for me in how I work with my scoliosis. My posture has improved and my curvature been reduced. Thank you for this offering!”
“I have a long history of chronic left sided back and hip pain, I have a spondylitis and a few other diagnoses that are all together just irritating to my daily life. I have sprained my back over 30 times. I was a professional modern dancer and I love movement. Years ago back surgery was recommended to me but because I’m very wary of surgeries I chose to just manage my pain. I have tried probably everything you could name but when I came across Clinical Somatics I knew this could not hurt me so I gave it my full attention. For the first 40 days I was still not sold and then I noticed that I was having more pain free days than ever. It has been 6 months and although I still have pain it is much less and I’m back to Pilates and yoga (although less aggressive). I am never going to stop this, I love it. It has changed my life and I feel very grateful.“
“I had plantar fasciitis for months before finding this course. Stretching helped for about 20 minutes, yoga for about 2 hours – then I tried somatics and it helped for the whole day. Gradually, the pain lessened and I returned to walking to work. It took the full five months for me to be pain-free, but I always found the exercises relaxing. Contrary to what I had read, my problem was more with my back and back of leg muscles. So I stopped icing, rolling, etc and just went through the exercises as they came and now I am very glad I did. I plan to continue and address my areas of tightness and stay pain-free. Thank you so much!””
“I have just read The Pain Relief Secret by Sarah Warren and what an excellent book it is, very comprehensive in every way. This book is a must for people with chronic pain, and also health practitioners who will gain from this knowledge.”
“I have greatly enjoyed and benefited from the Level One Somatics course. The issues I faced with severe pelvic rotation were endless, however, it is helping straighten the pelvis and I went from no walking at the beginning of the course to walking 15km a day at the end. I learned that some exercises I should only do on one side and others can be done on both. With help and advice from Sarah, I tailored the course to suit me (as I am at the moment) and it works wonderfully. Learning to ease down and take it slowly was probably the most difficult but now I look forward to my 30 – 45 mins a day, integrating meditation into this time and having finished the first course, I will head enthusiastically into Level Two after I return from holiday. Thank you so much Sarah! Your course is beautifully presented and easy to follow. I would recommend it to anyone!“
“I found Clinical Somatics through my Psoas Release practice (a form of somatics) that I started doing on myself on a regular basis since January 2018 after a low-back disc injury (caused by a chronically tight psoas muscle). When I realized how much chronic pain I was in versus now (a year later) and that it was part of a bigger picture and the mind-body-soul connection/reintegration, I became passionate about teaching this to others.
I did not realize the level of chronic pain I had been in for about 10 years. I pandiculate on a regular basis (every morning now)! I feel it is moving me into a new somatic awareness of embodying my body. I want others to feel good in their bodies. I want to help others with whatever challenges (be they physical or emotional/mental) they face due to not knowing about somatics (yet). I want to heal others. I’m envisioning a world without back pain and anxiety!”
“I just want to say that I’m so grateful that you have shared your expertise online, as I have no practitioners near me, and Somatics has proved to be a huge benefit to me even in these early stages. Actually, it is the only thing that has worked in helping me to walk and stand again! I have Joint Hypermobility Syndrome which makes my joints loose with frequent full and partial dislocations, causing terrible muscle contractions, spasms and nerve pain. I basically get no help from my health service as they say there’s nothing that can be done for me but, after a very long search, Somatics has finally helped. I have a really long way still to go of course, but I’m so grateful because Somatics is helping me so much. I always believed I could get better and control my condition (health professionals disagreed and told me I needed a wheelchair), as before my symptoms exacerbated I led an extremely active and healthy life, but it’s been so difficult and painful that I had started to give up hope. I can’t cure my condition, but with Somatics I can finally get my life and health back and be a physical, active person again. Like I said, I’m just so grateful you have made this programme accessible online. Thank you!”
“I have been doing Somatic exercise for over 10 years on my own and with a physical therapist. I have books and tapes from Thomas Hanna and other experts in the field. These from Somatic Movement Center are the very best I have found. The instruction is really comprehensive. I like the way the exercises are broken into smaller segments so you’re able to really focus on each one before moving to the next. Using video, audio and written descriptions is really helpful.
I have had many different types of physical therapy as the result of a moped accident thirty years ago. Somatics is the only approach that has any lasting effect.“
“I have now completed the Level One & Two Courses. Having studied both Yoga and Pilates, I find these Somatics exercises absolutely incredible. Both courses are brilliantly run by Sarah who I have found to be extremely helpful and accommodating. I wouldn’t hesitate in recommending these courses.”
“You know, it’s one thing for a type of body work to have an effect on recent pain and dysfunction. Powerful enough, but it’s a whole other realm of beauty when it starts working on the older stuff. Even more when it starts doing that as quickly as somatic movement does.
I am so very much enjoying the somatic movements Level One. I am a post breast cancer lumpectomy client, who had many issues with neck and scapula afterwards, I think mostly from positioning and what was in the tissues prior to procedure. I am benefitting greatly, and interestingly, the connection seems to be more about what is going on in my sacrum than anything else.
I am a 25 year bodyworker and an exerciser, and I hope to do the CEI Level 1 course so that I can teach these exercises to other breast cancer clients. Thank you for being such a fabulous facilitator and for doing the internet available instruction. That takes effort! And, to make it so accessible and affordable to us is just a treasure!
“WOW!!! I am soooo thrilled to have stumbled on this yesterday! I was only recently diagnosed with severe scoliosis and yesterday I turned 57! I never knew! I have a huge lumbar C curve that then rotates the thoracic causing a rib hump (extended ribs on one side.) Long story short-you don’t really notice it other than the hump that has appeared in the last 5 years.
I’ve been through all kinds of therapies, and yesterday I worked hard and was in a lot of pain. I purchased these scoliosis classes, did one for an hour and had the most pain relief and best night’s sleep I’ve had in weeks!! I woke with only slight stiffness….compared to ‘Ok, how bad is it this morning?’
Thank you, thank you, thank you!!! I will get the word out! The best birthday present!!!”
“Upon completion of both Level One and Two Courses I can’t overstate how impressed I am both in terms of content and ease of use. I’d recommend these classes to anybody wishing to be free from chronic pain whether due to repetitive movement habits, poor posture and/or injury rehabilitation. As a yoga instructor, I fully concur that musculoskeletal release created through pandiculation rather than stretching is more permanent in nature and much less likely to incur adverse effects such as over-stretching and resulting injuries. Thus, when combining somatic movements with yoga poses the sum of the total by far exceeds the sum of the parts promoting optimal wellness physically, mentally and emotionally.”
“I find that the work that you’ve done with Somatic Movement Center is absolutely phenomenal. I’ve begun to incorporate your work into my classes. My students love it, as do I. So thank you, and much much gratitude for your work.”
“Somatics has totally transformed my life. It started with back and anxiety problems. After my first class I didn’t want to move. I felt totally at ease and peace. I wasn’t anxious and my back pain was almost nonexistent. After a couple weeks of classes my back pain had subsided. After that I started doing the Level One and Level Two courses here and my body and mind has never felt better. I practice every single day, almost every morning but always every night. It has helped not only my back pain but has completely calmed my nervous system. Between my regular yoga practice and somatic movement my anxiety has completely disappeared.”
“I am so thrilled to be learning Somatic Movements from you. I have been in the healing field since the late 90’s on a personal mission to heal and help others heal. I am experiencing such deep relief with these movements and was able to move out of extreme sciatica pain down both legs, to experiencing only aching sensations and tightness. This is remarkable!! I certainly did not need proof that Somatics could help me in pain, but now I do have a direct experience.”
“I have been taking the Level One online course and greatly enjoying it. I really look forward to my daily practice, and am quite amazed at how consistent I’ve been with it. I have done the exercises every day for a month, and have found great relief from my chronic headaches. I also have been experiencing a lot of mental shifts and insights, and feel like my practice has something to do with it. Thank you so much for your program. It has been a huge gift in my life, and I have been telling others about it!“
“This is the best program I have encountered. I am a military veteran, with 2 tours to Afghanistan and have scoliosis which became much worse due to all the heavy lifting and carry overseas. These exercises have released the muscles and I am almost back to normal.“
“About 6 months ago, I had reached a level of pain in my body that was unbearable. My SI joints tend to lock up which creates pain throughout my core and lower body. In fact, every area of my body is impacted to some degree. I had joined an online support group for SI joint dysfunction and someone mentioned somatic exercises. After doing some searching online, I came upon Sarah’s program for Clinical Somatics and signed up, starting Level One immediately. I journalled everyday and noticed after about a week that my pain had lessened and that I was coping better, both physically and mentally. I diligently practiced everyday, following the prescribed schedule and eventually completed Level Two. What I have noticed is I am able to better manage my pain so I can work everyday but more importantly I can continue to do my physical activities. The pain is less frequent but when it does increase, I trust the somatic exercises to help me in managing. Bonus: I’ve cut back on my physiotherapy treatments! I’m so very grateful to have the opportunity to learn the techniques provided in Sarah’s course. She is a wonderful guide!“
“I really want to thank you for the Level One course. All the different exercises really changed my life. I have had back and hip problems for over 20 years and it is almost gone. I tried so many things and nothing really worked for me except these somatic movements. I am sure that I will go on with the Level Two course. Thank you so much for changing my life in this positive way.”
“I can’t thank you enough for this wonderful course. I’m doing a lot of work for my scoliosis but these really helped with flexibility, relief of muscle tension, and new posture freedom. I will definitely be continuing with these in the future!”
“First I want to thank you so much for this program, it is truly remarkable. Up until doing your work, hatha yoga seemed to be the most beneficial for my scoliosis which unfortunately has gotten worse in the last number of years. But now with these exercises I feel I have a way to stop any progression and to help me live a more pain free existence. I could not be more grateful. You do such a wonderful job of instructing and demonstrating- it’s very clear, easy to understand and follow. Plus you have such a peaceful and calm demeanor. Its mindfulness and meditation in action- love it!”
“I have not yet completed the full Level Two course. I am doing a very slow rehab after a lengthy illness. My muscles atrophied and I have what seems to be permanent nerve damage in both legs (although I am still seeking treatment). I continue to do the Level One exercises and the Arch & Curl is the absolute best for relieving tight lower back muscles. Consistent practice helps get rid of the general stiffness I feel each day. If I slip, and stop doing them for a few days and the aches come back, all I have to do is about four Arch & Curls and the pain is gone. I can’t recommend Somatic Movement enough! Thank you Sarah!”
“I was first introduced to Somatics when a friend took me to a practitioner, who she said was a healer. She said everyone who went to her felt better and they took home exercises.
I tried it. I was intrigued. I had back and knee issues and I had given up. Over the years I had gone to PTs, acupuncturists, sports medicine doctors, etc. I even tried Feldenkrais at a friend’s suggestion. I liked it but I wanted something that I could do at home. It didn’t help to have someone working on me and then I would leave and the pain would return.
I felt a little better after the Somatics session but I was intrigued by the home program. I was traveling at the time. When I got home I started looking into it more. I looked at books. I did an online session with someone and I saw another person in person a few times. I liked it but I wasn’t convinced and then I found Sarah’s course on the internet and signed up for it.
After a few sessions, I really started to understand what this was about and I learned the proper pace of the movements and the proper way to do them. This was so much better than my individual sessions either in person or online.
Now if I feel pain I am confident I can get through it. I do Somatics and I see results right away. I do it preventively twice a day. It is so empowering. I can’t thank Sarah enough and encourage anyone to try her courses.”
“I have completed your Level One Course and enjoyed it very much. Your way of teaching and the structure & design of the course provide an effective and fun learning experience. I’ve already been practicing Hanna Somatics for some years, and I’ve experienced very good results. Following your approach, I feel I received a deeper understanding of how this system works, as well as some precious “missing links.”
One of the highlights for me was a new understanding of the basic “Arch & Flatten”, i.e. your way of splitting it into two parts. Now it really feels like a gentle, safe and beneficial exercise to practice myself and to recommend to people with back-problems.
Thank you for sharing these great exercises with such clarity and dedication. I really hope I can join you for your Exercise Instructor Course at one stage!”
“I am so grateful I was introduced to Somatic Movements – I now know I have tools to use when I am in pain or revert to old patterns. I love the slow pace and slow movements; it reminds me to slow down during my daily activities, pay attention to my breathing and my movements. I now have hope for my chronic neck pain. Even though it is still there, it is less, and I have learned to move it rather than protect it. Thank you!”
“Years ago I had an accident at a beach. After surgery and other treatments, I was told that I could never walk properly again. I was at the lowest point of my life. At the time, I read about a taichi class offered in the community and decided to take it. Slowly it turned my life around. Not only my physical body improves, I developed confidence on my recovery. Time passed, I was doing a lot better, but the injury and other long time misuse of my body still left me with aches and pains. While I was searching for some way to help my healing, I came across a short video of Somatics doing “arch and flatten”. I followed instruction and did it a few times. The next day, my low back felt better. So I started another phase of my journey and I can’t say enough how good it is. It awakened my body, I began to be aware of how some muscles work and how to use them properly. As consequences of my practice, I often have pleasant surprises. One day, my neck pain is lessened, the other day, I could walk barefoot, etc. Even my taichi practice improves. So I have two treasures: taichi and Clinical Somatics. They help me learn more about myself and reward me with health and happiness.“
“I was in a car accident about 20 years ago, and I still had pain on my left side and limited movement throughout my body as a result. I have done everything over the years: massage, rolfing, craniosacral work, myofascial release, you name it. I read Thomas Hanna’s book and it made a great deal of sense. I started having private Somatics sessions, but I could not get into the habit of doing the exercises at home. Finally after about two months I started doing them at home, and it has made all the difference in the world. My pain is now mostly gone and I am moving much more easily. I’m able to go on long walks again, which is a big deal for me. This is the best I have felt in years.“
“I injured my back last year, and since then I’ve had pain in my SI joint. I’ve been trying to stay really active but the pain was about a 7 out of 10. After two sessions and a month of doing the exercises, my pain is down to a 2! I can’t believe it. I was feeling sciatica pain and numbness a few times a week, and I hardly feel that anymore either.”
“I knew my back was a problem but did not realize how bad it actually was. I have a lot to accomplish & I am more than willing to do whatever. 40 plus years of dentistry & counting. I am still able to work & enjoy my office due to Somatics. I can’t say enough about the (Level One) workout & I have been referring my patients to the system.“
“I’ve gone through some very traumatic things in my life, and I’ve also done a lot of intense and reckless physical activities. At age 55 my body was definitely the worse for wear. I had pain and arthritis in both knees, sciatica, and chronic pain in my neck. I read Thomas Hanna’s book and found Somatic Movement Center online. I had five Somatics sessions over the course of about three months, and my knee pain has improved and my sciatica and neck pain are completely gone. The daily practice has lowered my stress as well. Thank you, Sarah.”
“Loved this course! I was familiar with somatic yoga before taking the course, Sarah laid out the information is a very accessible manner allowing for a deep understanding of the movements. I loved the daily practice classes and am sure they will continue to be apart of my regular practice.”
“My 15-year-old daughter is a ballet dancer and she had developed lower back pain. It didn’t go away even after taking a break from dancing for six months. After three sessions, her pain is almost completely gone! Sarah taught her how to release her back muscles and stand without arching her lower back, and it has made a big difference.”
“I started Somatics not really understanding what it was all about. After my first class, I realized that it would help me in many ways. By retraining my muscles, that in my day to day life had become very tight, I was able to get rid of my back pain. It has also helped me relax and refocus. I enjoyed it so much that I brought my children to class as well.”
“I truly enjoyed your workshop (Reduce Stress and Improve Sleep & Breathing). In addition to feeling great because of the movement and body awareness, it gave me a new perspective of being in the moment. I honestly didn’t expect such a profound outcome from a 2-hour workshop so it’s a very pleasant and welcome change!”
“After taking several of Sarah’s Somatics classes and having several private sessions I have a new awareness of balance in my body. I had a lot of knee pain from osteoarthritis which was causing tension in my leg muscles. The Somatics process helped me to release that tension which has enabled me to walk more and exercise in general. I recommend Somatics because it is gentle, painless, and relaxing!”
“I don’t live anywhere near a practitioner but was so lucky to find these recordings. I feel like I’m in a class! I know I’m doing the movements right because my back has gotten so much better. Thanks Sarah!”
“I had pain in my hip for several months and it was starting to impact my life and my workouts. I got massages weekly and tried chiropractic a few times, but the pain did not get better. After my second Somatics session, my pain went away completely for a few days – it felt like a miracle. Now as long as I keep my hip loose with the exercises, my pain stays away. Somatics is the only thing I’ve found that really works!”
“I’ve had the pleasure of taking several of Sarah’s workshops, and listening to these recordings is just like being in her class. Her voice is so relaxing, and the recordings make it much easier to do the exercises at home.”
“I’ve had bad posture my whole life, and over the past few years my neck and shoulders became very tight and sore. After learning the Somatic exercises and practicing them about five times per week, I am finally able to release that tightness. I feel much looser and less stiff overall.”
“I had only learned the Somatic exercises from Hanna’s book, and using these recordings has made a big difference in my practice. There are a lot of nuances like pace, body position, and awareness that I just didn’t get from the book.”
“I’ve had just one session and have been doing the homework exercises for a few weeks now, and my pain is gone! I even invited my friends over and taught them the exercises in my living room!”