Trauma Release Exercises Diary

Trauma Release Exercise Diary - Day 4 - Saturday 23rd Feb 2013

Wow. Today's trauma release exercises were a lot stronger than yesterday's. I think it helps that I am not very tired today. I got tremors in all but the second exercise. When I was lying on the floor, doing the last, and seventh exercise, the tremors moved to pretty much my whole body, including the neck, shoulders, legs, waist. I guess my hands and feet were the only things that stayed still. Sometimes the tremors felt less like shakes and more like movements of the muscles, e.g. my shoulder would subtly 'bang' against the floor or my neck would move from side to side.

It felt a little bit freaky, in fact, to have uncontrolled movements in my muscles which were not really shakes anymore. It is 7.50pm now, I was home alone, and had no music on or any other distractions.

Now, after doing the exercises I feel a little spaced out and even slightly dizzy. But again I can breathe better. So my body must be doing good things and readjusting itself through these exercises. I think I need to go out for a walk to clear my head. I wonder if tiredness will hit me again, as it has for the couple of days before, or if that was just returning-to-work-after-holidays -tiredness.

Below is a picture of exercise seven, which is the most powerful exercise. If you don't have much time, it is fine to just do this final exercise.

You lie on the floor with the soles of your feet together, your knees bent and open at the hips. The you lift your bum off the floor for one minute. Next, you relax your bum down on the floor and stay in that position for one minute. Then, with your feet still in this 'butterfly-like' position you move your knees a little closer together and hold for two minutes, while your bum is still resting on the floor. Then you move your knees closer together again, and hold for another two minutes. Finally, you put the soles of your feet against the floor, knees still bent and pointing upwards. Then you stay in this position for up to 15 minutes (or less if you don't have time) and let the tremors come.

[Update: In the beginning I was timing the minutes but then just started roughly holding each pose as I thought felt right, without timing. I only time the last 15 minutes of the exercise now, and 5 minutes for the 'horse stance' when I do it.]

trauma release exercises, david berceli, alternative psychotherapy
Thank you Mamma i Stan (at
mammaistan/category/halsa/) for the image.

8.40pm: Still not tired. I have been watching David Berceli's videos and I think what was going on in my body today was called myofascial release. Fascia, apparently, is the soft tissue component of the connective tissue that provides support for most structures in the human body, including muscle. Myofascial means 'the fibrous tissue that encloses and separates layers of muscles'.

On one South African TRE website it explains: "This amazing self-activated myofascial release occurs as a natural response of human neuro-physiology." So it seems that these movements have something to do with the central nervous system, which would definitely make sense.

On Wikipedia, under 'myofascial release' it explains that deep tissue massage attempts also to release these tensions: "The direct myofascial release (or deep tissue work) method engages the myofascial tissue "restrictive barrier" (tension). The tissue is loaded with a constant force until release occurs."

9.50pm: Well, I didn't seem to get the exhausted tiredness today that I got when doing these exercises after a workday. But I'm pretty certain I will still sleep quite well today.

Trauma Release Exercises - Day 5 - Sunday

11.20pm, just finished the trauma release exercises. I start enjoying them so much now that I lose the track of time. The final 15 minutes seems to go very quickly, whereas only yesterday it still seemed like a very long time.

Today I got good shakes, a bit less than yesterday, and now they were again more tremor and shake-like, and not so much 'movement' like. My right shoulder started releasing and then both simultaneously got shakes through them. It felt good. I also felt some tension pain between my right shoulder and neck and felt how there was a lot of tension there. Don't know if this is trauma-related tension, but at least partly it is lack of exercise and work-related, as I have been having a very stiff neck for some month now. I also got continuous shakes in my legs, as always.

Although the release felt very good and quite effective, I wonder why I didn't get the more dramatic movements as I got yesterday. I wasn't alone in the flat this time, my boyfriend was here, and I wonder if the body releases more freely when one is alone. The other reason could be that I was very tired today when I did the exercises and I have noticed earlier already that the tremors seem to be less strong when tired. It is as if the body is reserving energy for more vital things than trauma release.

Trauma Release Exercises - Day 6 - Tuesday

I had to skip the exercises yesterday as I got my menses and was in pain and feeling very weak and tired. Today I felt better, although still quite tired. I just finished doing the exercises and, as expected, they were not that strong this time - because of the tiredness (I think). I got good release in the shoulders however, and developed some pain in between the right shoulder/ neck like last time.

I really enjoy the exercises these days and today I kind of felt like some happiness started rising through afterwards. I was laughing a bit and feeling quite nice. This was a subtle effect and could be my imagination but I think it has something to do with the energy flow. We will see, longer term, anyway, what effects I get.

I think last time it seemed like the benefits of these exercises may have unfolded many weeks, perhaps months, after I had stopped doing the exercises. It is almost like a process gets started by releasing the trauma and a new balance in the body-energy system and a series of unfolding benefits will result.

Trauma Release Exercises - Day 7 - Thursday

I had to skip the exercises yesterday again, as I was feeling extremely tired. The menses this week have really brought my energies down, possibly because of the iron loss. In any case, today I stayed at work couple of hours extra and developed a headache. I came home and thought I wanted to drink a beer to relax. So I tried to do the exercises after drinking the beer. This was a mistake... however, an interesting one.

All the trauma release exercises were fine, although there were almost no tremors. During the final exercise, however, I had no tremors in the legs at all. It started in the shoulders straight away. But it was kind of like a slow-motion version of the usual shakes, very lazy movements, as if my central nervous system was affected by the alcohol and struggling to initiate the release. So I went through all the exercises but after a couple of minutes of the final exercise I had to stop because it just didn't feel right. The tremors had none of their usual vigour and energy.

Trauma Release Exercises - Days 8 & 9 - Friday & Saturday

Friday I did the exercises after work and they worked quite well. I got hardly any shakes in my legs and mostly in my shoulders. My hips swayed a little as well but it really seems like it is my shoulder, neck and upper back area that keeps releasing - and even more the right shoulder. I wonder if this could be related to the fact that my neck has been very stiff for quite a while now because of work.

Saturday's exercises felt like they were going a bit deeper, I got some deep minor trembling. I would lie still for a while and then suddenly get a burst of fast shakes, mostly in my shoulders. Deep breathing helps to bring nice shakes as well but being able to relax well is key. I keep having to remind myself to keep different muscles relaxed, which improves the tremors.

TRE - Day 10 - Sunday 3rd March 2013

Did the trauma release exercises around midday, while listening to drum&bass. Sometimes I feel as if the body almost shakes to the rhythm of the music! But I think I am just imagining that. But I got lots of very fast, almost violent shakes today, mostly in my shoulders but also a little more this time on my legs and hips.

I wonder if it is somehow the subconscious mind shaking the body. Because the subconscious mind enables the muscles for you to breathe even without thinking about it. The subconscious also moves your legs when you walk. Is it possible that it also 'knows' how to release trauma, and thus shakes the right muscles? I think it is possible, even though it seems like a bit of a crazy thought. Well, I don't know how this works in reality.

The shakes were definitely very good today, probably because I was well rested and also able to concentrate and do the exercises with mindfulness. When my mind is tired, like often after the work day, I cannot pay too much attention to what I do - I just go through the motions mechanically instead.

I took a nap afterwards and almost couldn't wake up. I felt absolutely exhausted. But I got up and went out for a walk and quickly woke up. But generally I think the trauma release exercises are better done before bedtime. And I think I may need a bit more sleep these days than normal, since I've been doing them. Not sure, might also just have to do with iron loss and the menses.

Trauma Release Exercises - Days 11 & 12 - Monday and Tuesday

I did Monday's exercises after work and got extremely tired afterwards. Also during the day I was feeling like I had been 'hit by a bus', meaning, that all my muscles felt worn out. I think when you get stronger tremors you may use a lot of muscles you never previously used.

Monday night I had another nightmare... it seems that I have been having more nightmares since doing these exercises. [I don't normally have nightmares.] I guess that could be a sign of 'traumas' or tension being unlodged and removed.

Tuesday: It seems that each trauma release exercise session is different! Today I got very deep feeling shakes, with my neck arching. I managed to remember to relax my shoulders and neck and as a result, got kind of 'shock-like' or cramp-like shakes. I would lie still for some seconds and then get series of fast, deep tremors. Then deep breathe and lie still again, and again a set of tremors. My neck started aching at some point but the ache finished by the time 15 minutes (of the last exercise) was up. My right shoulder got some attention again but mainly it was my lower back shaking this time, as well as my legs - I got some different types of shakes in my legs and hips as well.

I felt a bit spaced out and dizzy afterwards again. But not that long.

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To be safe, please consult your health-care provider before attempting self-treatment for health issues.