ISITTA’S Unique Approach To Trauma Training​

Healing trauma requires a multidimensional somatic healing skill set. Train in somatic attunement, and compassionate relationships, and help move beyond trauma.

Developed by Manuela Mischke-Reeds, MFT, a clinical psychotherapist and international somatic psychology teacher – integrating somatic clinical trauma tools, and wisdom teachings for trauma healing.

The Innate Somatic Intelligence™ Trauma Therapy Approach (ISITTA) offers an inside-out transformation of the therapist and somatic trauma skills. The Therapist’s own somatic healing is a foundation for safely co-regulating trauma clients.

Upcoming ISITTA Trainings

Wed 28 Aug 2024

10:00 AM PDT - 10:30 AM PDT (30 minutes)

LIVE & ONLINE | August 28, 2024, 10:00 am - 10:30 am, PST

More Information

ISITTA acknowledges a number of influences in the work. No one method has been without lineages and influences. These have been bodies of work that have brought techniques or mindsets that have influenced this Therapy Approach. We honor each of these influences in their own right and draw from these wisdom lineages both new and ancient for the impact they have made. We will credit these influences and acknowledge their origins.

These include Hakomi Mindful Somatic Psychology, Somatic Experiencing, Internal Family Systems, Relational Therapy models, Polyvagal Theory, Continuum Movement, Authentic Movement, Body-Mind Centering, Embodiment Practices, Expressive Arts, Somatic Touch work, Ancient wisdom traditions, Buddhism, Taoism, Earth-based traditions that have brought Embodied mindfulness and compassion practices, and Social Action and Systemic awareness such as historical and collective trauma.

ISITTA training is designed for psychotherapists, social workers, mental health coaches, and medical professionals, mental health practitioners, who are striving to develop deep inner resources in order to become more effective healers. This unique training requires a commitment to learning outside of your comfort zone and beyond your intellectual knowledge, and a willingness to delve into the mysteries of the body’s innate healing powers.

Becoming a Different Kind of Trauma Practitioner
Co-regulating into Resilient Nervous Systems
Trauma Skills You’ll Learn

Because contemporary helping professionals face the complexities of multiple, intertwined traumas, we need to train differently. It’s no longer enough to just learn skills; we need to become a different kind of practitioner, one that’s unafraid to sit with suffering in a deep and compassionate way. We need to become trauma change catalysts who can see beyond the stigma of trauma and support our clients growth and the sacredness of their life journey.

This means we need to learn how individual trauma intersects with the collective, historical, and intergenerational trauma in the current living systems we are embedded in. This self-discovery is both about who the trauma therapist is in relation to their own healing path, and in relation to their client’s world.

We can’t fix past traumas for our clients, but we can learn how to respond to their longing for wholeness with wisdom, skill, and heart. We can support their nervous system to regulate through a safe therapeutic relationship and help them to trust that their trauma story has a deep purpose. We can co-discover healing paths that include many different and creative options and empower the client to transform internally held beliefs. We can learn how to ground ourselves in kind heartedness and work with our clients’ traumatic experiences as our own triggering arises. This new way of helping transcends the old healing paradigm and delivers precise and effective tools for self-healing and transformation. ISITTA training provides a clear pathway to becoming this kind of healer.

Guiding clients through trauma processes requires developing a fluid and resilient nervous system as a therapist.  Adaptive practitioners commit to healing their own nervous system and use their co-regulating capacities to help the resilience of the client’s nervous system towards new ways of being. In this training, we will focus on learning “from the soma up” to deepen both your cognitive and somatic understanding. In other words, you won’t just learn techniques and practices for healing trauma–you’ll learn to embody them.

Being a somatically intelligent practitioner also means understanding the current sociopolitical and societal challenges that we’re collectively facing. We need to integrate not just our client’s personal trauma, but how it intersects with intergenerational and collective trauma in a society that’s rapidly changing and evolving. We will explore who we need to become to facilitate health and well-being in this climate of dramatic change; this requires a new mindset that can help heal deep fractures in communities, societies and in the relational realms.

Even though our human nervous systems are the same, we process fight, flight, freeze, and fawn in similar recognizable ways, the individual experiences and expressions are unique. To heal trauma we need to understand how trauma touches every aspect of a person’s life, their body-mind, relationship to spirituality, family, community, and identities. We can’t understand the person’s individual trauma without the collective and historical shaping that has occurred, and how it impacts the now. We can’t understand the healing of trauma until we learn to be with the innate wisdom that is deep within the soma. 

The training utilizes the moving body to access the ability to adapt and be with challenging internal states of clients. It is in the fluid system of our bodies that we can learn to successfully navigate complex trauma identities and internalized parts.

In ISITTA training, you’ll learn how to work with a variety of different traumas. We are focusing on tools and inner skill sets to help clients work with the impact of relational and developmental trauma, physical, and collective, historical, and systemic trauma.

You’ll come away from this training with an evidence-based clinical skill set and trauma-informed somatic techniques for your clinical practice. 

The training will introduce how to include movement practices and techniques that range from micro-movements through a freeze state, to expressive, creative art processes.  At the heart is how we track the client in the present moment through mindfulness explorations, safe touch techniques, working with trauma parts, dissociation and shame. We will train what it is like to have a “somatic mindset”, seeing the client through the intelligence of the body, and how that changes the trauma process. This integrative training will make you more confident in how to assess and apply somatic work with your trauma client. 

To honor and support the neurodiversity of the learners in this training, we’ll learn through a variety of activities, including experiential guided group practice, somatic practices, movement, small practice groups, short lectures and discussions. Because of the somatic and experiential nature of this training, participants will need to be comfortable learning through movement, breath, safe, boundaried touch and mindful interpersonal exploration.

Innate Somatic Intelligence™ Trauma Therapy is an integrative, relational, and somatic approach to healing trauma. Based on essential Hakomi Therapy techniques, ISITTA integrates a polyvagal trauma-informed view on the somatic, relational, and clinical skills needed to transform trauma experiences. This training is suited for Therapists who want to include more of a somatic and internal movement focus in their work, and for Psychedelic Assisted Therapists who want to include a holistic somatic approach in their integration work.

This highly experiential training is designed for therapists/practitioners who want to learn from their own somatic experience, be part of a mindful learning community, and be guided by trauma-informed principles. We begin with the innate wisdom of the trauma practitioner’s own nervous system by using trauma-informed movement practices* to develop and increase an attuned and resourced connection to oneself and one’s body. We then continue to layer techniques into these practices that are designed to facilitate clients’ emotional and somatic releases and work with Trauma states and memories. These practices are also key to studying the limiting trauma beliefs that hold back the client’s growth.

ISITTA training is based on the core assumption that trauma healing is not a problem to be solved, but rather a psychobiological process to be connected to. This connection with the soma is how we access the innate healing intelligence within. Trauma healing can reconnect us with innate somatic intelligence that is available in all of us: the “river beneath” the trauma. This river is the innate and fluid state that accesses a healing reservoir within. Through the safety of the attuned therapeutic relationship where we use precise somatic and clinical practices.


We train the trauma therapist with in-depth somatic tools such as self-regulating practices, felt-sense awareness (somatic attunement), safe touch and movement therapy techniques, and memory-processing tools, to help heal both individual and collective trauma experiences.


The training has four main domains:

Embodied wisdom ™
Clinical Trauma Knowledge
Trauma Self-Care
Embodied Community Support

We increase our somatic knowledge and build a relationship with our inner healing capacity.  This embodied wisdom ™ skill set is for therapists who want to incorporate in-depth somatic therapy tools into their existing therapy practice. We will integrate fluid movement, breath practices, self-touch practices, and trauma-informed mindfulness tools. Embodied wisdom is at the center of the work as it is the practitioner's state of mind, body, and heart that will impact any delivery of tools.

This examines how individual trauma intersects with the collective, historical, and intergenerational trauma in the current living systems we are embedded in. This self-discovery is both about who the trauma therapist is in relation to their own healing path and in relation to their client’s world. 

We can’t fix past traumas for our clients, but we can learn how to respond to their longing for wholeness with wisdom, skill, and heart. We help regulate through the safe therapeutic relationship and help clients to trust that their trauma story has deep purpose. We co-discover healing paths that include many different and creative options and empower the client to transform internally held beliefs. We learn how to ground ourselves in self-kindness and compassionately work with our clients’ traumatic experiences as our own triggering arises. This help transcends the old paradigm of defense, shame and survival responses into healing experiences.

Apply trauma-informed and evidence-based clinical therapeutic interventions tailored to developmental, relational traumas, CPTSD and Shock Trauma. We will learn through a combination of live demonstrations, didactic presentations, and supervised practice groups.

Being a somatically intelligent practitioner also means understanding the current sociopolitical and societal challenges that we’re collectively facing. We will examine how trauma experiences intersect with intergenerational and collective trauma in a society that’s rapidly changing and evolving. We will explore who we need to become to facilitate health and wellbeing in this climate of dramatic change; this requires a new mindset that can help heal deep fractures in communities, societies and in the relational realms.

How do we cultivate self-compassion and resilience as a trauma therapist? Each module will introduce the students to applicable somatic practices that self-regulates the therapist to  be supported through challenging client experiences and countertransference. Develop body-based self-care tools to support both emotional and nervous system capacity. Learn how self-care is about changing the systemic trauma impact and how systems of trauma can impact social location learning paths. 

The training will introduce how to include movement, creative arts processes, mindfulness explorations, safe touch techniques, working with trauma parts, dissociation and shame. We will train what it is like to have a “somatic mindset”, seeing the client through the intelligence of the body, and how that changes the trauma process.

The training is supported by caring with Assistants and Mentors. On the learning weekend, the assistant will give you supportive feedback to help you learn the skills offered. Each module includes a mentor group that will practice in small groups the skills learned in the weekend modules. These more intimate groups will help create a supportive experiential learning setting and build a network of somatic therapists/practitioners who share the values of being compassionate and attuned. 

You will receive audio and video instructions and scripts so you can practice these on your own. Each module will have experiential guidance in the large group so you can practice waking your Innate Somatic intelligence.

Somatic Intelligence™ lives beneath every trauma experience. With compassionate somatic attunement, we wait for the client's healing emergence. Trauma therapists need to be relationally adaptable, emotionally resilient, and somatically attuned within. This somatic ground of the Self provides steady support for the client. It also sustains the therapist to live in this uncertain and changing world in self-compassion.

How is ISITTA unique in Trauma Healing?
What are the six principles in ISITTA Trauma work?
The Classic Principles of the Hakomi Method
Learning from the Soma up

Transforming your clients’ traumatic experiences isn’t just about savvy therapy skills and clinical interventions. It requires a refined ability to see deeply into your client’s suffering and trust their Innate Somatic Intelligence™.  This means that the therapist/practitioner is working on themselves as they deepen their somatic therapy skills. Trauma therapists sit at the intersection of individual and collective trauma support and must also understand trauma as an issue of social justice and socio-political forces. This requires developing skills that include seeing the complexity of the client's process in the present moment and also as it unfolds in their current and historical living and societal contexts.

Facilitating the process of unearthing one's Innate Somatic Intelligence™ is an in-depth journey into how the past has impacted the present, both mentally, emotionally, systemically and relationally. 

ISITTA is about learning to trust the client’s wisdom by offering concrete, present-moment experiences and safe explorations that can shift the inner perception of the historical trauma imprints. These therapeutic skills require a different kind of training. The therapist has to be willing to partner, as well as guide, the client while listening to what truly wants to emerge. This is not an easy process. The pressure of performing well, delivering change, being overwhelmed with the suffering and pain, the helplessness, and one's own triggers all come into play when engaging in in-depth trauma healing. 

In this method, we are learning to stay connected with the present moment unfolding of the body's healing experience. We trust the body’s inherent capacity to heal. Through mindful movements, we reconnect with the innate capacity of wanting to move out of an immobility response by sensing the fluidity in our bodies. Every trauma experience has both a memory sequence and a motor-movement sequence we can access to release limiting psychobiological patterns in a safe and supported way. What is unique to ISITTA is that we utilize the fluid systems of the body to support this organic healing process.

ISITTA is based on six principles and is the evolution of the originally inspired five classic principles of the Hakomi Method. These Principles frame the work and guide the practitioner toward integrity, self-awareness and embodied wisdom™. The principles act as an inner compass in which to anchor the somatic and trauma techniques used. For example, an intervention that is offered from a compassionate inquiry mindset has a particular quality/felt sense/ impact on the client. And, if the therapist holds relational and community healing as a value, we will understand our own biases within the context of our work as trauma therapists.

Here is a brief overview of the six guiding principles.

ISITTA Principles

  1. Innate Somatic Intelligence
    The body is intelligent, this healing wisdom is innate and, with safety, can be accessed. The wisdom body knows how to heal.
  2. Relational & Community Healing
    We are co-regulating humans. Healing happens in our relationships with each other in a safe and inclusive community, and in relation to our natural environment. When we safely co-regulate, we can grow and thrive.
  3. Adaptability & Embodied Wisdom
    Everything changes, nothing is permanent. We can grow, adapt and thrive. We are a fluid organism. With adaptability, we are able to meet the challenges in this increasingly complex world. Through this process we develop embodied wisdom™, an inner guidance that can meet the challenges we face with both knowledge and right action.
  4. Compassionate inquiry
    The compassionate self-inquiry process is evoked/arises/happens when we extend kindness to ourselves and others. We learn to trust the process even in times of suffering. Others become motivated and/thrive in the presence of  compassionate regard. The therapist is in a compassionate inquiry with the client, that supports the unfolding process of the client.
  5. Embodied Therapist and Consciousness
    Engaging and embodying somatic mindfulness allows us to shift our awareness and purpose towards new insights and experiences. This intentional practice and mindset helps us discover our Innate Somatic Intelligence™.
  6. Interconnection & Interdependence
    Understanding our own healing in the context of family, community, and society allows us to be of service to others. By understanding our interconnectedness, we integrate our actions of past and present and become intentional in our actions for the future.  We recognize the interdependence of all living beings and actions and become deliberate in our choices.

We acknowledge these inspiring principles as the foundation of mindful and wakeful living and practice. 

  1. Mindfulness
  2. Body-mind holism
  3. Non-violence
  4. Organicity
  5. Unity

80 % of information travels from the body to the brain. This bottom-up information is essential in understanding how to heal trauma. 

In this training, we will focus our learning “from the soma up” process as we engage who we are as a living ecosystem. This will enhance our theoretical and clinical understanding of the presenting trauma issues. When we deepen both our cognitive and somatic understanding can we begin to offer a healing path the client can engage with. 

You will learn how to guide your clients through the soma-up approach toward the resolution of their fight-flight, freeze-fawn responses. You will help the client to examine their internalized states/parts, how they show up somatically and the limiting beliefs that got created as a result of the experience.

We will look at how to inspire curiosity and engagement in the healing process so that the client can develop self-agency in their process. 

Guiding clients through trauma processes also requires a fluid and resilient nervous system by the practitioner. The adaptive practitioner commits to healing their own nervous system’s resilience towards health and new ways of being.We will be spending time in floor work, practicing breath and movement practices that follow the organic impulses in the body. This floor time is essential as it prepares the compassionate capacity for supporting client challenging processes.

Learning Outcomes
Core Trauma Skills Training
ISITTA Curriculum
Who Is This For?
  1. Cultivate somatic knowledge from the inside out that is grounded in trauma-informed theory and practice

  2. Learn precise “Soma up” approaches that are polyvagal-informed. 

  3. Develop a clinical somatic interventions toolkit that serves complex trauma processes

  4. Learn how safe fluid movement interventions can help the trauma healing process

  5.  Discover how individual trauma is interconnected with societal,  historical,  and collective trauma and current systemic and current world events

  6. Apply wisdom teachings to one's own therapy life and practice 

  7. Practice and apply somatic and clinical knowledge during the training through peer and supervised practice groups toward becoming a highly skilled somatic trauma practitioner

  8. Integrate the innate Somatic Intelligence framework in your existing trauma theory and practice

  9. Build a network of somatic therapists/practitioners who work in a somatic, trauma-informed, and compassionate relational model.

In ISITTA training, you will learn how to work with how different traumas, such as relational and developmental trauma intersect with collective, historical, and systemic trauma.

You will come away from this training with an evidence-based clinical skill set and trauma-informed somatic techniques for self and co-regulation.

ISITTA is an in-depth somatic training, integrating somatic trauma techniques, movement therapy tools, expressive arts, polyvagal-informed regulating practices, embodied and mindfulness-based exercises, didactic learning, and live demonstrations as well as real-time practices with colleagues.

 

The training will demonstrate how to

  • Facilitate safe somatic trauma processes that are grounded in compassionate therapy
  • Suggest trauma tools, and train clients to use them, that apply to their unique needs.
  • Move a stuck trauma process such as freeze and shame or highly activated states, that arises in the process through compassionate somatic exercises.
  • Access deep somatic emotional resources within the client’s nervous system and psyche, through safe experiential protocols
  • Apply a variety of somatic interventions that are varied such as micro movement to expressive movements adapted to the trauma informed process  
  • Learn to identify trauma states and protective parts to help transform held beliefs
  • Work with cultural, historical, and collective trauma influences and biases
  • Cultivate our own therapist seat through somatic and movement techniques to regulate countertransference experiences

 

To honor and support the diversity of learning styles, we use a variety of learning activities, including experiential guided group practice, somatic practices, movement, small practice groups, short lectures, and discussions. 

Because of the somatic and experiential nature of this training, participants will need to be comfortable learning through movement, breath, safe-boundaried touch, and mindful interpersonal exploration in small group learning.

The ISITTA curriculum consists of live online teaching, experiential somatic practices, live demonstrations, a-synchronous learning, live webinars with special guests and facilitated peer practice group sessions. The a-synchronous learning includes guided embodiment practices, handouts for your clients and additional lectures and demos of the work.

Curriculum is subject to change

Innate Somatic Intelligence 

  • Innate Somatic Intelligence in Trauma Therapy

  • The Embodied Therapist: Therapist seat and self-regulation skills for self-care

  • Somatic attunement and resourcing in trauma therapy

  • Hakomi Contacting skills

  • ISITTA principles 

  • Polyvagal informed theory on somatic healing

  • Therapist Social Locations Awareness - The Therapist Systems

The World of Trauma: Relational, individual and collective 

  • The interconnection of trauma: individual to collective trauma 

  • Understanding Relational Trauma and CPTSD 

  • Hakomi Trauma-informed therapy skills 

  • Attachment beliefs and somatic patterns

  • Experiential Boundary Practices for Trauma Clients

  • Compassionate co-regulation skills for relational and collective trauma

Somatic Trauma Processing & Systems Impact 

  • Systems that Shape Us: Social Action and the Client’s trauma systems that have shaped them

  • Facilitating Somatic Trauma Processing

  • Embodied wisdom™ practices for stabilization and inner healing

Moving Beyond Trauma: Dissociation and Movement Embodiment Tools

  • Understanding the Dissociation Continuum 

  • Micro Tracking Somatic Trauma Indicators

  • Movement tools for trauma healing - Micro Movement in Dissociation Process

  • Safe relational touch explorations and ethical considerations

Internalized States and Shame

  • Identifying internalized trauma parts/ states toward somatic coherence 

  • Recognizing beliefs connected with trauma states

  • Befriending protective trauma parts

  • The role of Shame in the trauma process

  • Self-compassion, resistance, and discomfort

Transformation & Trauma Wisdom

  • Embodied explorations in the trauma transformation process 

  • Barriers in the Transformation and Integration Phase 

  • Post-traumatic Growth & Trauma’s Innate Wisdom

  • The role of integrating rituals in trauma therapy 

  • Trauma-informed consideration working with Psychedelic Assisted Psychotherapy

  • Self-care protocols for the therapist/practitioner

ISITTA training is designed for psychotherapists, psychologists, counselors, healers, social workers, coaches, and medical professionals, psychedelic-assisted Psychotherapists,  who want to include an in-depth somatic approach to trauma healing. It is designed for professionals who value experiential learning and recognize their change process as essential to becoming a more effective healer.

This unique training requires a commitment to learning outside of your comfort zone and beyond your intellectual knowledge, as well as a willingness to delve into the mysteries of the body’s healing powers.

The Innate Somatic Intelligence™ Trauma Therapy Approach (ISITTA) is based on the belief that the inside-out transformation of the therapist is essential in supporting the client’s journey toward a whole and self-sustaining life. When we learn about/identify/learn to listen to/connect with and train our somatic wisdom and knowledge, we can guide our clients safely and precisely into the vast resources and creativity that they hold in their bodies.

ISITTA Faculty

Manuela Mischke-Reeds, MA, LMFT

ISITTA Founder and Hakomi Trainer

Ashley Ross, MA, LMFT

Certified Hakomi Therapist and ISITTA Teacher

Staci Haines

Developer of Generative Somatics

Guest Teachers

Arielle Schwartz, PhD

Clinical Psychologist Developer: Resilience Informed Therapy

Karen Daley, MA, LMFT

Psychotherapist Hakomi Teacher-in-Training

Sheila Rubin, MA, MFT, RDT/BCT

Guest Speaker - Marriage and Family Therapist

Joshua Sylvae, PhD, LMFT

Psychotherapist Somatic Experiencing Faculty

ISITTA Training Applications Coming Soon!

Prerequisites: We require an introduction to ISITTA method through an online (3-hour minimum) or in-person workshop prior to taking this training. Exceptions can be made if applicants have trauma training experiences. Please note these on your application for consideration of waving the requirement. Applications open in March 2024. Program will begin in September.

ISITTA Intensives - Live in-Person Training

This is a chance to experience the ISITTA work in a live immersive setting in Europe and Australia.These ISITTA intensives are not hosted by Embodywise. To register please contact the registration below.

Australia 

ISITTA Intensive Dec 3-8, 2024 Sydney 

To register please contact: 
Karen Baikie – [email protected]

Hakomi.com.au

Germany

July 9-16, 2024

HAKOMI® – TRAUMA BEHANDLUNG MIT DER HAKOMI METHODE
INTENSIV-TRAINING IN EINEM MODUL

To register please contact: 
E-Mail: [email protected]

www.hakomi.de
For more info in German: https://www.hakomi.de/230