When I say I practice TRE, most folks automatically assume I stand with my arms in the air, pretending to be a Tree. You stay fully clothed! (My dad thinks anything Holistic is done naked). There is no need to go and hug any trees afterwards; unless you want to.
In June last year, I attended a Tension & Trauma Releasing Exercises (TRE) workshop, I went with an open mind. I had heard about TRE from my Yoga teacher Virginia Compton and she arranged for Jo Hamilton a TRE practitioner to come and teach us how to use the excersies.
TRE releases the natural shaking that occurs in most animals, this is said to help reduce stress, anxiety and tension in the body that has been held in our psoas muscle, deep within our core. It releases the tension from our muscles and fascia (the network of nerve endings all over our body), sending messages to our brain and I guess it promotes the feeling of healing and wellbeing. We humans have managed to suppress this natural reaction to dealing with stress in our lives. Research has also shown it to be effective in the treatment of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and other medical conditions. The exercises and research were founded by David Berceli PHD.
I wanted to feel better, to continue not taking any pain relief medicines. Having spent time trying numerous holistic approaches to managing my Fibromyalgia, I decided to give it ago, at the start of the workshop, Jo showed some clips showing TRE in practice, there was a guy who was suffering from Fibromyalgia. Hearing him speak about the positive results he received from TRE, brought a tear to my eye and a glimmer of hope. Having learnt how to start the natural shaking, my body started to shake. At first I thought I was making my body shake, or I was imagining it, you can’t, it just does it on its own, you are taught how to stop it. My legs just wanted to flop from side to side as a spinal twist, the strange thing is, I can’t even do that move in such a strong yoga posture. As soon as I started the tremors, the rocking started, it was like car window wipers. Your body just needs to do its thing, I went with it.
Having completed my shaking, I really felt something had shifted I knew this was something big and life changing. I felt lighter, different and whilst I was shaking I could not stop laughing. I did not have to re-live any of my trauma, although now I have been practicing TRE more frequently I am still not sure what trauma I am shaking off, all I know is it changes each time I do it. Sometimes I get a tremor in my right arm, possibly from an old dislocation. However, I do not want to label it, as that is not necessary in order to receive the benefits.
Everyone who practices TRE shakes differently, I usually end up going across the lounge floor, or just a gentle rocking motion. Occasionally I start to shake whilst I am in a yoga pose, this often causes me to giggle, but it feels so natural. Shortly after completing the TRE workshop I went to Ibiza on holiday and did not need to take my walking stick! I did not have any pain in my hips, knees or feet. Result……….
At Christmas I went to the dentist, normally a very traumatic experience for me due to a very severe phobia. I suffer from indigestion and hiccups and as soon as I get in the chair I start to cry. This time I went, I did not need to use my Bach flower remedies or remember to practice relaxing yoga breaths. I sat in the chair and all was well. I made a comment to my husband in the car on the way home, and said what has changed, the only thing I can put it down to is TRE!
I am so passionate about the benefits of TRE that I recently found that Jo Hamilton was running a work shop in Totnes and I went along to accompany my husband who was in intrigued to experience TRE.
Less than a week later, I get a phone call at 1.00 am in the morning to inform me that my father was seriously ill and being taken by ambulance to A & E whilst talking on the phone TRE kicked in and I started to shake, I was very calm and placed the phone down and went back to bed and the tremors continued very gently and I then fell into a deep sleep.
Life is not always easy, but if you find something that works, give it ago. There is lots of information available about TRE on the internet. I feel that it is very important to go to a workshop run by a practitioner, who will gently guide you through the process as it is important to stay grounded, so that you remain in control of your shaking and you can stop it, when you want.
Since completing TRE my life has changed, I do not feel that knot of anxiety in the pit of my stomach. I feel much calmer. I think it is how I respond to situations and my body’s reaction to them. My pain has subsided, I still get the odd niggle, but not enough to need pain killers. I still occasionally feel fatigue, but it is more tolerable without the pain. I believe the long term benefits from practicing TRE are; less experience of pain, better sleep, a different way of reacting to stress and an increase in general health.
I do not feel that my Fibromyalgia is impacting on my life the way it once did, I have already started to use Fibro in the past tense. As a Holistic Fibro Fighter I really believe healing can help. What an amazing great future I have, embracing the natural healing of my body; rather than accepting the diagnosis offered to me by rheumatology in 2014.
To find out more information about TRE contact Jo Hamilton www.Itsallaboutfeelingbetter.co.uk