What Is Somatic Sand Therapy®?
Sand Therapy is a psychotherapeutic modality that was originally developed through the pioneering work of Dr. Margaret Lowenfeld, a physician who worked with children in London in the early twentieth century. Lowenfeld combined play, miniature figures and a tray of sand to create what she called, ‘The World Technique’, a place where individual children could build a miniature world.
Later Dora Kalff, a Jungian analyst, studied with Lowenfeld and soon recognised that what was taking place in the children’s worlds was what Jung had described as the individuation process. Kalff preferred to witness the child’s work without the interference of questions and dialogue used in Lowenfeld’s method, and so created her unique approach called ‘Sandplay’.
From this early development of sand therapy, it is not surprising that many diverse applications with a range of age groups would follow. Various clinical theories and adaptations of Lowenfeld’s and Kalff’s initial work exist today. Sand Therapy is a term that encompasses the integration of various therapeutic frameworks with miniature figurines in a sandtray.
Somatic Sand Therapy® is a non-directive intervention conducted over a series of sessions called a ‘process’. It uses the combination of sand, water, a collection of miniature figures, a wooden tray, the client’s imagination and ‘felt sense’, and is based on the latest Neuroscience, as well as Somatic, Attachment and Jungian Psychology. Somatic Sand Therapy® incorporates the use of directive intervention when needed, integrating Symbology with practices from Family Constellations, Gestalt Therapy and Internal Family Systems. More than an Expressive Therapy modality, Somatic Sand Therapy® is a mental health intervention that supports nervous system regulation, healing and alignment with the Self, and development of the personality. Extensive training of professionals committed to personal and professional growth is required.
About Somatic Sand Therapy® Training
This course provides a thorough introductory training, with extensive practical experience and supervision, in Somatic Sand Therapy®.
The play aspect of this approach makes it inviting and nonthreatening. Somatic Sand Therapy® plays an important role in helping clients move from emotional chaos to secure relating with self and others and can be incorporated into traditional counselling with children, adolescents and adults. It can offer ways to help clients resolve family issues, contact and deepen personal resourcefulness, and promote emotional resiliency. It is an effective support for transpersonal exploration, trauma healing and to increase ‘earned security’. Somatic Sand Therapy® has been found to support insight into relational attachment dynamics, emotion regulation, completion of defence cycles and internal resource building. It is also a great support for clients with limited access to verbal skills or language differences, ie. those effected by trauma, language barriers, and/or young people.
Based on twenty years of experience and development, this course provides introductory training in understanding clients’ sand creations. It provides clear guidelines that support therapeutic confidence in using this modality to access deeper layers of emotion and support transformation of unconscious processes in the psyche. This is a highly experiential, interactive program that will provide many skills to support your clients’ move from protection to connection, from the inside out. Participants will have the experience of following their own personal growth journey using the processes for personal growth at each workshop. A manual, slides and handouts will be provided in each workshop.
Becoming a Registered Somatic Sand Therapist
This Level 1 Training course is the first step in becoming a Somatic Sand Therapist. On completion of Level 2 and having completed all requirements for both training levels, participants can apply to register as a Somatic Sand Therapist and be included on the Registry for Qualified Somatic Sand Therapists. This allows graduates to use the initials SST after their name and in their credentials.