TRE® Tension & Trauma Releasing Exercises

 

TRE is an easy-to-do neural exercise that releases deep tension and even trauma patterning from the body. It evokes a gentle trembling that occurs automatically (like when being nervous for a presentation), which are called neurogenic muscle tremors.

This trembling is a very natural and adaptive impulse of the body to help return itself to a calmer state after stress or shock has happened. Other mammals have the same automatism to discharge tension, for example, a deer that shakes and trembles after having survived an encounter with a lion. 


We humans can, however, inhibit our natural stress-releasing impulses when we have learned to doubt or judge them. When we hold them in it causes fight, flight, and freeze responses to stay activated much longer than would be necessary. When we allow these survival impulses to fully complete themselves, the body and mind naturally return to a state of calm, safety, and social openness. 

The uniqueness of TRE is that the shaking originates deep from within the core of the body, including the important pelvic muscles (psoas) that play such a big role in tension and relaxation. The gentle TRE tremors reverberate outwards along the spine releasing tension in all directions. It often feels pleasant, but it can also free up emotions or memories that we have not yet processed and that are more challenging to feel. 

Guided TRE sessions teach you how to safely allow the exercises and regulate the intensity so that you gain the freedom to practice on your own. It is my aim for you to have this skill always available for the rest of your life, so you can recharge and heal easily after day-to-day or bigger challenges.   

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Common benefits of TRE:

  • decreased anxiety

  • reduced symptoms of PTSD

  • more energy

  • better sleep

  • increased flexibility

  • healing of old injuries

  • greater emotional resiliency

Currently offered online and in The Netherlands in Voorschoten (area Leiden, Den Haag)

My own experience of TRE: 

 

I was in Fire Safety training at work learning how to respond when a fire breaks out. One of the things the instructor showed us was a graph with red lines on it, indicating the rising stress levels when the body switches to its survival program. At that moment I recognized my own state clearly. I am clearly on that red line... chronically, I live there! Even without a fire around I couldn't focus well, breathe deep, relax my body or sleep well at night. But she only taught how to escape the fire, not the stress itself. 

In a rush of determination, I searched the internet all night and stumbled upon one of the early explanations of TRE. While forcing my body into challenging postures, having no idea how to do TRE, I gave up concluding 'this doesn't work either'. Laying flat staring at the ceiling I suddenly noticed a slight shaking in my core. Normally I would have gotten up and ignored it, but in this context it had my attention. It traveled out to my legs, arms, and head, shaking everything quite violently. I felt a compulsion to laugh and cry (a release of the diaphragm), and after 10 minutes or so the movement stopped by itself. 

Still laying there, I noticed the ceiling somehow looked brighter and more friendly. I got up slowly and the whole atmosphere felt more peaceful.. as if a sense of doom had fallen away and the inner watchdog had fallen asleep. I could breathe."

No two people have the same experience with TRE. All sessions are unique and depend on many factors. My first experience was particularly dramatic, motivating me to complete the training. Please don't compare my experience with your own. In my experience, It will be different every single time and it will fit your body and your state at that moment.