Pat Ogden

What the Body Knows, How the Body Speaks: A Sensorimotor Psychotherapy Perspective

Pat Ogden is a psychotherapist who developed an approach to therapy called sensorimotor psychotherapy. She founded the Sensorimotor Psychotherapy Institute, located in Boulder, Colorado. She is the director of the institute, which focuses on educating and training clinicians in sensorimotor therapy techniques used to address developmental, attachment, and trauma issues.

Pat Ogden works as a trainer, consultant, and clinician, applying her psychotherapeutic and somatic techniques to various groups of people, including prisoners, trauma victims, and psychiatric patients. Ogden is also the co-founder of the Hakomi Institute with Ron Kurtz.

Her 2006 book, Trauma and the Body: A Sensorimotor Approach to Psychotherapy, outlines her approach.

The body has stories to tell.  If we listen attentively with an open mind and heart, its movement, posture and expression will reveal a wealth of knowledge about past experiences, present expectations, and future predictions. This unintended somatic narrative relentlessly taking place beneath the words elucidates the “implicit self” in a natural language that we’ve often neglected but can learn to understand. In this presentation, we will examine the language of the body, how it both reflects and sustains trauma and attachment wounds, and movement, posture, and sensation as avenues for exploration and change in the therapy hour.  We will look at the non-verbal the non-verbal tête-à-tête between clinician and client, elucidating the body-to-body conversation that ensues as each responds non-verbally to the other.  Videotaped excerpts of consultation sessions will be shown to illustrate key elements and provide jumping off points for discussion.