Benjamin Trontelj - Clinical somatics experience
I still remember the time when I first called Aleš and described the problems I had with my knee during cycling.
He listened attentively and asked calmly how my shoulders felt and if I had any previous injuries or operations. He didn’t mention the knee and calmed me down by saying that everything will be alright. My face split into a grin and I felt straight away that, instead of trying to “patch up” the symptoms, we’ll work on the root of the problem. If I think back, the first time I experienced pain on my bicycle, I felt it in my left diaphragm.
It was 15 years ago, when I was still a student, during a daily cycle through Ljubljana. A few years after that, the pain appeared again and even moved into my lower back, left hip, knee and the opposite foot. It didn’t happen only during cycling but also during walking uphill, work, getting into and out of the car etc. In short, it happened not only during sports but also during everyday activities.
As always, even though I did sports regularly, I looked for the cause in weak muscle. So, I added new exercises, visited physiotherapists, carried out self-massage with the help of different devices and did stretching exercises until I felt there’s nothing more I could do. Because I wasn’t happy with the results and grew restless inside, I continued to look for a solution and finally, came across Clinical Somatics.
The key was in relaxation and awareness of certain body parts or, in other words, focusing attention on movement during the Clinical Somatics exercises and becoming familiar with the Red Light Reflex. During my conversations with Aleš, I absorbed his words and everything seemed natural, grounded, logical and simple. From one therapy to the next, I let myself go more and more and in the end, I identified myself entirely with the Clinical Somatics philosophy. This means that, along with everyday exercises of Clinical Somatics movements, to which I dedicate from 10 to 30 minutes (and there is no more need for any other methods or devices), I started to apply certain Clinical Somatics principles also onto my everyday life.
During certain tasks or activities (cycling, climbing, playing with kids on the ground etc.), I quickly run a mental scan of my body to see if certain parts of it are not relaxed, if there are any obstacles, if my breathing is smooth etc. Then, I correct it and I’m more successful in whatever I’m doing. And I intend to continue in this manner.
Gabrje, 2 September 2015 Benjamin Trontelj, occupational therapist