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Martha Peterson’s book, Move Without Pain, is an important new contribution to the work of Hanna Somatics education, and to individuals looking for a user-friendly introduction to the Hanna Somatics exercises, to work with on their own or as an adjunct to private sessions.
When I first learned about Hanna Somatics, I was thrilled to find Thomas Hanna’s book and read the primary source in detail. As a natural health practitioner, I was fascinated to study the principles involved, but there was a bit of a disconnect for me when it came to performing the exercises he describes. I sensed that I was missing certain subtleties of movement and awareness in order to be most effective and to adapt them to my individual needs.
Soon afterward, when I read Ms. Peterson’s book, I was so impressed by how she explained the concepts in more practical terms that helped me “get” it. It’s important for people to understand how Hanna Somatics works so that they can become more attuned to their own body’s process of learning more relaxed and functional movement. So she discusses why people have pain, the role of the brain in either restricting or allowing natural movement, and how that relates to what our muscles are doing.
Her explanations are very easy to grasp, the writing flows smoothly and the layout is so visually pleasing that it’s very enjoyable to read through the book and pick it up again and again to refer to as needed.
The photos in the book of Ms. Peterson performing the various exercises, which are organized sequentially, make it easy to see how each is done, and simple instructions next to each photo make it easy to refer to. I’ve found many books on movement that, due to poor layout and how the images are displayed, the movements are too difficult to visualize. Move Without Pain with its excellent information and layout that makes the instructions come to life, makes Hanna Somatics more accessible to everyone.
I feel that Hanna Somatics is an important part of natural health education. It deserves to be made accessible to anyone interested in changing habitual movement patterns that cause pain and to allow the wisdom of the body to regain control for greater freedom of movement and alleviation of pain. I can wholeheartedly recommend Move Without Pain to anyone interested in learning more about Hanna Somatics and/or wanting to start learning the exercises - to help with a specific pain issue or to increase flexibility, reduce stress, and generally feel better in their body.
I’ve been fortunate enough to have a Hanna Somatics practitioner nearby, and find that personal guidance is tremendously helpful especially for those who have certain physical limitations or need to tailor the exercises to their needs.
Private sessions can also help with the nuances that make the daily practice even more effective, as well as providing more support and encouragement on a personal level. So I will be recommending Martha Peterson’s work to my friends and clients - which includes not only her book, but instructional DVDs and private sessions either in person or by online video conferencing. See Essential Somatics for more information.
January 15, 2012 No Comments
Many people often ask me whether natural healing approaches including diet, supplements, etc. can help with their symptoms. Sometimes it’s just one symptom, and other times it’s a laundry list, but it may include acid reflux, irritable bowel, eczema, migraines, arthritis, fatigue, frequent colds, PMS, high blood pressure, sinusitis, anxiety, depression, hair loss, etc., etc…
So in order to begin with a rational approach, rather than to just throw whatever tools we have at the symptom, hit-or-miss, we need to understand what a symptom is and what’s required in each case.
A symptom or condition is simply the outer effect of some deeper cause, not the cause itself. And that causative level needs to be understood in terms of our life force. The life force actually has two aspects, rather like the relationship between yin and yang.
One aspect of the life force is quantitative and involves processes that need to be balanced, in certain amounts. This is where you need to fill a deficiency or remove an excess of something, and this is the realm of what we call Therapeutic Regimen, or dynamic regimen. It includes diet, nutrition, detoxification, water intake, sleep, and other lifestyle issues that impact health.
For some people, this first category—regimen—is all they need. They may simply have some imbalances that need to be corrected, and the appropriate, individualized regimen accomplishes that.
If a person has no problematic symptoms, they still need proper regimen to maintain their health. And when the body is stressed with with symptoms, we obviously need proper diet, nutrition, water, sleep, etc. So, individualized regimen is always the first step for everyone.
Dynamic regimen provides the foundation that you need for maintaining or restoring your health.
The other aspect of the life force is qualitative. This is the realm of true disease (and we use the term in a very specific way, not as conventional medicine does). When there is a disturbance in this area, it could involve emotional disturbances, shocks and traumas, infectious diseases, drug effects, and inherited predispositions to disease.
So, symptoms could be stemming from imbalances, or diseases, or both. Now it becomes clearer that to simply target the symptom and try to suppress it is not going to resolve the real problem.
Once the appropriate regimen is underway, some people need to go on for further treatment to remove deeper disease disturbances. Then I refer people for treatment with the Heilkunst system of medicine (which includes homeopathy but is much more comprehensive).
The causes may be very different for each person with the same type of symptom. For example, for one person with fatigue symptoms, regimen may be all they need to come back to balance. For another person, regimen is the foundation but they also need treatment to remove various deeper disturbances that are contributing to it.
Let’s take an example of a skin rash. For one person, the rash could be related to a food allergy; for another person it’s emotional issues; and for another person it could have been triggered by a vaccination or other trauma. Each case could have several causative factors, and each would need to be treated differently.
But the nutrition/regimen has to be there, in any case, to correct imbalances and support the healing process, fill deficiencies, balance the metabolism, help with detoxification and rebuilding new tissue, etc.
I can’t guarantee that nutrition and regimen will be the whole solution for a chronic health problem. But there can’t be a whole solution without it.
January 14, 2010 No Comments
Heilkunst is the complete system of therapeutics developed by Dr. Samuel Hahnemann 200 years ago and furthered in our time by the Hahnemann Center for Heilkunst. It means “the art of remediation,” and includes the systematic removal of the blockages to our life force – blockages which are the roots of our illnesses.
Homeopathy is one small part of this elegant system. Heilkunst also includes the correction of various imbalances, using diet, nutrition, and many other methods from the natural health field.
Conventional medicine concerns itself with symptoms and tries to eliminate them without addressing the real causes. That allows the underlying causes to continue their course, while creating iatrogenic (doctor-caused) disease in the process. Heilkunst works on a deeper level to remove the actual causes, without harm. Then the symptoms and conditions clear up as their causes disappear.
We heal only according to laws of nature. When the proper treatment is given to clear a particular disturbance, according to natural law, then your own inner healing power can complete the rest of the process. After that, people usually experience a greater sense of vitality in various ways.
To begin Heilkunst treatment, the practitioner will ask you to provide a chronological history of the emotional and physical traumas you’ve experienced throughout your lifetime. It’s not necessary to share the details of what happened, but just the events and how you felt about them. The treatment targets these traumas and removes them sequentially, according to precise principles.
We use remedies that are commonly known as “homeopathic,” which have undergone extensive clinical testing and are published in compendiums called materia medicas or pharmacopoeias. They are safe and can effectively reach to the deeper energetic level where the traumas are lodged.
Other aspects of treatment also help to strengthen your resistance to disease, shore up your life force, and provide some relief from symptoms in the meantime while the deeper issues are being addressed.
Through your interaction with your Heilkunst practitioner, you’ll learn to navigate and understand the course of your personal development. No matter what your health challenges are, Heilkunst treatment can remove the disturbances that block your full potential, to restore you to wholeness, physically, emotionally and spiritually.
The benefits of Heilkunst treatment can include:
* Relief from both chronic and acute illness
* Improved energy
* Improved immunity and ability to resist disease
* Improved sleep
* Improved relationships with yourself and others physically, mentally and emotionally
* Improved outlook on life and the world around you
* Improved ability to manage emotions and conflicts
* Decrease in stress and anxiety
* Increased sense of inner strength and wellbeing
* Increased sense of connection with your creative energy and your life’s deeper purpose and direction
If you’d like to read more about Heilkunst and homeopathy, see the other articles on Heilkunst on this website, and feel free to contact me.
June 5, 2009 No Comments
March 20, 2009 No Comments