“When we look at a traumatic experience, it is encoded in our brain and in our memories, and then it can also translate into life in our muscles and heart,” says Thoko Moyo, a registered trauma consultant who focuses on trauma. its practice in support of the Queer Trans Black Indigenous People of Color (QTBIPOC). “Everything is connected. What a person experiences or comes to a session with me focuses on. “They can be different parts of the body.”
Seventy percent of U.S. adults experience at least one traumatic event, according to estimates by the National Council on Mental Well-Being. And like our own wounds, how we hold the wound in our body is different for everyone. For Katie McKenzie, a certified Pilates instructor and founder of the A La Ligne movement method, abuse from her past was locked in her pelvic floor.
“It was my response to the trauma of sexual assault,” he says. “And the overwhelming feeling I felt was that yes, my pelvic floor was locked, but also that so much of me was locked and loaded and prepared for battle.” He led her to create A La Ligne, which combines Pilates, qigong (an ancient mind-body meditation practice) and physical experiences (a form of healing centered around physical trauma). “Once one acquires the knowledge and sense of what is going on in one’s own unique and individual body, one can be empowered to move and displace fear,” says McKenzie.
If you think your body is hurting, Moko says it’s a good idea to look for a professional counselor who can work with you to unpack the layers of your experience. If counseling is not an accessible option for you, here are some simple ways to help your body cope with an injury response.
Moyo and McKenzie cite both breathing techniques as central to the process. Moyo suggests box breathing (in which you inhale for four seconds, hold for four seconds, exhale for four seconds, then wait four seconds before inhaling again) and breathe with a bee (in which you inhale and exhale as you exhale) options for calm and concentration.
He also suggests a method of three, two, one in which you name three things you see, three things you hear and three things you feel and then you take a deep breath and repeat the process for two things and then one thing. “Breathing brings us back to our body,” Moyo explains. “It brings us back into space and ground us.”
“Movement plays such a powerful role in the ability to heal because it brings together the mind, breath and body at the same time,” says McKenzie. It emphasizes the importance of meeting your body where it is and not be ashamed or ashamed if your muscles start to tremble (even during “easy” movements). “Shaking can be a sign of new nerve pathways
“and new connections from the brain to bodies that did not have access to the past,” he explains. “I’m just saying, ‘Okay. This is a normal phenomenon. This is your body reconnecting with itself. It’s a good thing.'”
“Isolation is one of the worst things people can do, even though it ‘s often what people are attracted to or want to do,” says Moyo. “One of the greatest ways to combat physical trauma is through connections and community.” So build your support system, whatever it seems to you. It could be group therapy. Could it be close family or friends? could be one
network of people who share some of your experiences. The important part is that you seek out and cultivate the human connection to help you remember that you are not alone.
Oh Hello! You look like someone who loves free workouts, discounts on modern wellness brands and exclusive Well + Good content. Join Well +, our online wellness community and unlock your rewards right away.