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For the Greek philosophical system, see hylics.

Somatics is a term coined by Thomas Hanna (1928–1990) for a field of alternative medicine which includes a number of better-known therapies such as applied kinesiology and Rolfing.[1]

The term is derived from the word "Somatic" (Greek "somatikos", soma: "living, aware, bodily person") which means, pertaining to the body, experienced and regulated from within.

Hanna's ideas were based on those of Hans Selye and Moshé Feldenkrais. He proposed that most people were afflicted by a phenomenon he called "Sensory-Motor Amnesia" in which the body's muscles had fogotten how to move freely.[2][unreliable medical source?] In the 1970s Hanna developed a trademarked therapy, "Hanna Somatic Education" to address this perceived problem by "retraining" the body.[3][unreliable medical source?]


  1. ^ Raso, Jack (1998). "Unnaturalistic Methods: S". The Expanded Dictionary of Metaphysical Healthcare, Alternative Medicine, Paranormal Healing, and Related Methods (Online ed.). Allentown, PA: Quackwatch. Retrieved 2013-11-09. 
  2. ^ Knastr, Mirka (1991). "Remembering Thomas Hanna". East West 21 (4): 144. 
  3. ^ Price, Justin (2008). "Corrective exercise: Coming full circle: From medical gymnastics to self myofascial release and beyond, corrective exercise continues to help humans with physical dysfunction". IDEA Fitness Journal 5 (1): 40. 

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