Somatic Movement Education for Runners and Walkers

Running and walking are both natural movements that we make regularly in every day life. Whilst walking is done by almost everyone, running, which was once necessary for our survival, is now mostly done for pleasure or exercise or to catch the bus!

Running can be a joyous activity that promotes good health both physically and mentally, but for some, running can be painful and laborious, and can sometimes bring on injuries such as runner’s knee, achilles tendonitits, plantar fascitis, shinsplints, iliotibial band syndrome, hamstring and hip problems. The cause of the injury may be related to previous accidents, overused tight muscles and Sensory Motor Amnesia.

Sensory motor amnesia (SMA) is the inability to sense our bodies, thus making our movements less coordinated and more arduous. Reflexes in the brain create habits of tension (SMA), or holding patterns that prevent optimal functional movement. As this often goes unnoticed, these holding patterns are repeated in our activities such as running and walking, further creating more tightness and less mobility, thus affecting how we run and walk and leading to the above mentioned injuries, not to mention other associated problems such as back pain and shoulder pain.

This in turn can lead to structural problems that affect our joints and create pain in the body.

When we learn how these tensions are created, we can begin to unravel the knots that restrict our movement. Many structural problems are created by poor awareness of the body which also results in poor functional movement.

Somatic movement education is a simple technique that will help one improve awareness and functioning of the body as a whole. Walking, running, swimming, and in fact all movement can be improved, leaving us feeling free from pain and better coordinated in our movements.

‘Somatics’ refers to a practice of movement education that enhances internal awareness of the body, whilst improving mobility and coordination in our movements. The Greek word ‘Soma’ from which ‘Somatics’ derives, refers to the body as it is perceived internally by the individual. It is the ‘living body’ experienced from the first person perspective.  When our attention is brought to this inner, somatic experience, we begin to reveal what we know and what we do not know about ourselves.

Through the practice of somatic movement we begin to get in touch with what we are actually, physically feeling, and learn to respond to that. We bring awareness to how we move, and notice what, at the level of the nervous system, may hinder our ability to move with ease and be pain free. The practice is slow and gentle, and inspires natural movement patterns that arise out of sensing and noticing. Through increased somatic awareness, we begin to improve our posture, mobility, coordination and balance. 

Venue: Shirley House, 31 Psalter Lane, Sheffield, S11 8YL

Cost: Sliding scale :

£40 full waged / £30 low waged / £20 unwaged


May 14 2022


9:30 am - 12:30 pm

Leave a comment