TRE - Tension, Stress & Trauma Releasing Exercises
TRE (tension, stress & trauma releasing exercises) was created by Dr David Berceli. Over many years of working with people carrying the effects of trauma from war and conflict as well as areas of natural disaster, he started to understand that the body held in its physiology a physical response to trauma. TRE is a natural way of releasing that response.
Anything that overwhelms us be it physical, emotional or spiritual causes our body to go into a natural response- typically fight, flight or freeze. But unlike animals, we no longer have the ability to automatically "shake it off".
The effects of these various responses are stored in the body as muscle tension and can cause the nervous system to spin into a state of high alert.
We've all had personal experience of these responses: car accidents, worry about exams, stress at work, divorce and bereavement are only a few obvious examples of events that can lead to us feeling overwhelmed, anxious and stressed and for some of us, these responses stay with us for years and become chronic. Other events can be acute and life changing in an instant.
In both cases, the build up of muscle tension, stress, anxiety and trauma can become too much, interfering with everyday life, relationships and how we feel about ourselves.
TRE is a gentle but very effective approach using your body to acknowledge and express these physical sensations and emotions, ultimately dissolving their potency. Most importantly you don't need to know what it is you're releasing: TRE exercises focus on the simple bodily release of tension without needing to analyse the source. Whether you are 7 or 100 years old, fit or not, you can learn these exercises and how to practice them safely at home, whenever you need help. TRE turns off the alarm bells enabling the body & mind to slow down.
TRE is series of seven simple exercises in an order that allows specific muscles to be stretched and warmed up - gently and slowly, eliciting a natural tremor in the body. This tremor or shaking, once established, is enough to trigger the release of deeply held muscle tension in a manageable and safe way. The nervous system responds by allowing the body to become more peaceful and relaxed.
You can learn TRE either in 1 to 1 sessions or groups but in time the aim is for you to practice the TRE exercises on your own at home.
TRE is great for symptoms like stress, anxiety, shyness, lack of confidence, body love, PTS (post traumatic stress), pain, depression and insomnia or if life just isn't going how you want it to. It works really well alongside other established therapies.
I strongly recommend that those with long held trauma either speak to me prior to the first session and/or speak with another health professional to ensure that we can work together in a safe and supportive environment.
The exercises are done in loose clothing on a yoga mat and I will demonstrate first and then talk you through as you do them.
Shaking and tremoring is then done while lying down on the yoga mat. I sit near by, communicating with you and helping you to stay present and grounded, staying fully aware of what is happening in your body in the moment.
I will then invite you to rest - with a blanket! - for 5 minutes.
Lastly I will ask whether you have any questions or observations about your experience and make sure you feel ok to go home.
TRE® is a safe and effective stress release technique for most people. The TRE process should not be used as a substitute for trauma recovery procedures of a medical or psychological nature.
Individuals who have physical or psychological/psychiatric conditions that require strict regulation, individuals with fragile psychological defenses, a complex history of trauma or restricting physical or medical limitations should consult their medical practitioner or a Certified TRE Provider prior to performing these exercises.