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In-Person Seminar

Peter Levine’s Somatic Experiencing Conference: Clinical Tools for Healing Deep-rooted Trauma

Peter A. Levine, PhD |  Betsy Polatin, MFA, SEP
Full Day
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In-Person Seminar
Omni San Francisco Hotel - San Francisco, California


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This program offers a comprehensive exploration of trauma response mechanisms, focusing on the intersection of bodily sensations, emotions, and cognition. Participants will gain a deep understanding of how trauma manifests in the body and its profound impacts on mental and emotional well-being. Through a blend of theoretical insights and practical techniques, including top-down cognitive approaches and bottom-up sensory interventions, learners will develop skills in supporting trauma survivors through various stages of healing. Emphasis is placed on cultivating a safe therapeutic environment, utilizing grounding techniques, and integrating multi-dimensional breathing exercises to facilitate regulation and empowerment. Additionally, participants will explore the transformative potential of sound and movement modalities in promoting nervous system regulation and trauma resolution. By the end of this program, participants will be equipped with a diverse toolkit to effectively address trauma and promote holistic well-being in their professional practice.


CE Information Coming Soon

Continuing education credit information is coming soon for this live event.


Peter A. Levine, PhD's Profile

Peter A. Levine, PhD Related seminars and products

Dr. Peter Levine holds doctorates in both medical biophysics and psychology. He is the developer of Somatic Experiencing® (SE), a naturalistic body-awareness approach to healing trauma, which he teaches all over the globe. Dr. Levine is also the founder of the Foundation for Human Enrichment and was a stress consultant for NASA during the development of the space shuttle.

An accomplished author, Dr. Levine penned Healing Trauma, Sexual Healing and the bestselling book, Waking the Tiger. He also co-authored with Maggie Kline Trauma Through a Child’s Eyes and Trauma-Proofing Your Kids. His latest book, In an Unspoken Voice: How the Body Releases Trauma and Restores Goodness, is a testament to his lifelong investigation into the connection between evolutionary biology, neuroscience, animal behavior, and more than 40 years of clinical experience in the healing of trauma.

Dr. Levine was honored in 2010 with a Lifetime Achievement Award from the United States Association for Body Psychotherapy (USABP) and is a Senior Fellow at Meadows Behavioral Healthcare.


Speaker Disclosures:
Financial: Dr. Peter Levine is the founder and president of the Ergos Institute of Somatic Education, the president and editorial director of Ergos Institute Press, and receives a consulting fee from the Meadows Addiction Center. He receives royalties as a published author. Dr. Levine receives a speaking honorarium, recording, and book royalties from Psychotherapy Networker and PESI, Inc. He has no relevant financial relationships with ineligible organizations.
Non-financial: Dr. Peter Levine is a senior clinical fellow and advisor to the Meadows Addiction Treatment Center. He is a member of the American Psychological Association, the Humanistic Psychological Association, and the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies.

Betsy Polatin, MFA, SEP's Profile

Betsy Polatin, MFA, SEP Related seminars and products

An internationally recognized breathing/movement specialist and best-selling author, Betsy Polatin, MFA, SEP, has been teaching for more than forty years and is currently a master lecturer at Boston University's College of Fine Arts. Her background includes meditation, trauma resolution, and the broader healing arts. Her work is greatly influenced by the teachings of spiritual and Meditation Masters. Betsy leads international trainings where she presents her unique and revolutionary fusion of ideas: scientific knowledge combined with ancient wisdom and intuitive human creativity. Teaching experience includes: Touch and Movement in Trauma Therapy, Kripalu, The Embodiment Conference, Psychotherapy Networker, Performing Arts Medicine Association, U.S. Association for Body Psychotherapy, Science and Nonduality Conferences, and International Trauma and Yoga Conferences in the US and abroad. Since 2016, she has been co-teaching ongoing traveling workshops, themed "Trauma and the Performing Artist" and "Trauma in the Public Eye," with Peter A. Levine, PhD. She teaches Returning to Ourselves, the Wisdom of Trauma, with Dr. Gabor Maté. Betsy is the author of HUMANUAL, an Epic Journey to your Expanded Self and The Actor's Secret. As a well-known educator, she has published numerous articles in the Huffington Post. She maintains a private practice online internationally. Please visit:

Speaker Disclosures:
Financial: Betsy Polatin maintains a private practice. She receives royalties as a published author. She receives a speaking honorarium and recording royalties from PESI, Inc. She has no relevant financial relationships with ineligible organizations.
Non-financial: Betsy Polatin has no relevant non-financial relationship to disclose.

Additional Info

Live Event Schedule

Please note: There will be a lunch and two 15-minute breaks; one in the morning and one in the afternoon. Lunch and break times will be announced by the speaker and at their discretion. A more detailed schedule is available upon request.

Timeline for Completion

Please complete the CE quiz and/or evaluation within one week after the event.


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  1. Define trauma responses as defensive bodily reactions aimed at protection, and identify common manifestations in clients, such as hypervigilance, dissociation, or emotional dysregulation.
  2. Explain the concept that trauma-based perceptions remain static until there is a shift in the internal bodily experience, leading to potential changes in cognition, emotion, and behavior.
  3. Describe how feelings of shame, defeat, and humiliation stemming from the original traumatic event can manifest in the body, impacting mental, physical, and emotional well-being through somatic symptoms and psychological distress.
  4. Differentiate between top-down (cognitive) and bottom-up (sensory and somatic) processing, and analyze how integrating both approaches can enhance trauma recovery and resilience.
  5. Distinguish between support (external assistance and validation) and grounding (internal regulation and stabilization techniques), and evaluate their respective roles in trauma therapy.
  6. Demonstrate proficiency in facilitating the multi-dimensional breathing process as a tool for grounding, regulation, and fostering connection to the present moment in trauma survivors.
  7. Identify and apply various sound and movement techniques to support nervous system regulation and facilitate trauma processing in therapeutic contexts.



  • Overview of Somatic Experiencing (SE): A Naturalistic Approach to Healing Trauma
  • Introduction to the Case Study: The Story of Nancy
  • Understanding Misconceptions and Untreated Trauma
  • Limitations and Risks

Understanding Trauma Dynamics

  • Exploring the Trauma Vortex and Counter Vortex
  • Roots of Traumatization: How Species Respond to Helplessness
  • Types of Trauma and Trauma-Influenced States (e.g., Healthy Shame vs. Toxic Shame)

Exploring the Nervous System and Polyvagal Theory

  • Influence of Wild Animals on Trauma Responses
  • States of the Nervous System and Windows of Tolerance
  • Polyvagal Theory Applied

Effects of Traumatic Impact

  • A. Physiological Disorders and Symptoms
  • B. Unresolved Trauma Impacts and Consequences

Somatic Experiencing Applied

  • Understanding the Memory that Drives Us
  • Basic Memory Systems and Their Role in Trauma
  • Somatic Experiencing Techniques and Practices 1. Large Group Practice

Regulation in Somatic Experiencing

  • Exploring Regulation Techniques
    • Contraction and Expansion
    • Less is More Approach
    • Tracking Shifts in Regulation
  • Introduction to SIBAM and Its Role in Somatic Experiencing
  • Signs of Discharge and Its Importance in Healing

Clinical Tools and Approaches

  • Understanding the Difference Between Top-Down and Bottom-Up Approaches
  • Integration of Top-Down and Bottom-Up Approaches
  • Activities to Facilitate Self-Regulation


  • Recap of Key Points
  • Implications for Clinical Practice
  • Future Directions in Somatic Experiencing and Trauma Healing

Target Audience

  • Counselors
  • Social Workers
  • Psychologists
  • Psychotherapists
  • Therapists
  • Marriage and Family Therapists
  • Addiction Counselors
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Occupational Therapy Assistants
  • Case Managers
  • Nurses
  • School Psychologists
  • Other Helping Professionals



Omni San Francisco Hotel

500 California Stree, San Francisco, California 94104, United States
(415) 677-9494

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