About the Center
The Somatic Center is a healing arts studio specializing in body-awareness approaches to life, healing and wholeness. The in-town location compliments a smaller studio nestled against the edge of the forest on the outskirts of Northampton, MA. In a culture that has become disconnected from what most nourishes us, we offer programs, trainings and sessions for individuals and groups wishing to bring more aliveness, love and balance into their lives.
Somatic Therapy, bodywork or body-centered psychotherapy are different names used to describe a category of complimentary and alternative medicine (CAM) practices that involve working with the human mind-body-spirit connection to improve quality of life and promote healing. The “Soma” refers to the “mind-body-spirit” whole, which cannot be separated into its parts. Healing happens by being with what’s happening in present time in the “Soma,” within a non-judgmental atmosphere of deep abiding compassion and presence. Techniques vary greatly and may focus on:
- Improving chronic physical pain and stress related medical conditions
- Improving emotional symptoms that cause distress, including anxiety, depression and insomnia
- Assessing and improving posture
- Promoting body-awareness
- Improving body image
- Working with breath, movement and sound
- Tracking nervous system activation for working with trauma
- Addressing issues around love, intimacy and sexuality
Using the following techniques:
- Mindfulness Meditation
- Somatic Experiencing
- Expressive Arts
The Somatic Therapist: Our cultural models of healthcare don’t ask that practitioners be integrated within themselves. However, the embedded ethics in Somatic Therapy renders a practitioner ineffective unless, they’ve explored and healed their own wounding and developed exquisite self-awareness and mindfulness, alongside their professional training. In this way, the intellectual knowledge from formal training informs but doesn’t drive the work. It’s deeply integrated with heart and soul.
That’s Integrative Care at its best and the promise of Somatic Therapy.
Kristen Chamberlin, MS, LMT, SEP
Kristen is a dancer, parent and student of body-awareness healing practices. As a Massage and Somatic Therapist with 27 years of experience, she works with clients to resolve stress related medical conditions and trauma. In particular, she specializes in working with issues around embodiment, intimacy and sexuality. Her work is deeply informed by Somatic Experiencing, Mindfulness Meditation, Yoga, Dance, Himalayan Tantra and a love of the natural world. She’s also an avid student of many other body-centered modalities of healing.
As director of the Somatic Center (SC), she coordinates an emerging team of holistic healthcare practitioners. She runs the Moving with Eros, Trauma Healing, Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction and Tantric Studies programs at SC, where she works with individuals and groups in private practice, retreat settings and trainings throughout the northeast. She is core teaching faculty at ISEE, an Institute offering a model of holistic sex education for those wishing to become AASECT certified educators and therapists. And her work has been featured in Emily Nagasaki’s ‘Come As You Are’ — a book detailing the ‘surprising new science that will transform your sex life’.