TRE® (Tension and Trauma Releasing Exercises) is a set of six exercises that help to release deep tension from the body by evoking a self-controlled muscular shaking process — called neurogenic muscle tremors – in the body. These gentle tremors reverberate outwards along the spine, releasing tension from the sacrum to the cranium, activating the body’s natural coping mechanism to contend with stressful and traumatic situations. When used regularly, one experiences deeper resilience in the body, emotionally and in the mind, even when the stressful situation is ongoing.
Developed by Dr. David Berceli, Ph.D, TRE consist of specific exercises focused on helping the body to release sometimes long-held muscular contractions, leading to greater relaxation and release of chronic tension throughout the body and mind. Developed through Dr. Berceli’s work with large traumatized communities during his time in war-stricken Africa and the Middle East, TRE safely works with the body’s natural muscular responses to generate effective and therapeutic release of stress and tension from mind and body. The reflexive muscle vibrations produced generally feel pleasant and soothing.
TRE is based on the fundamental idea, backed by recent research, that the effects of stress, tension and trauma impact people’s ability to function at the psychological, physical, and even social levels.
Since the shaking mechanism in the muscles is part of our natural behavior as humans, everyone can benefit from TRE. It is practiced by thousands of people around the world as an effective tool for naturally releasing chronic traumatic stress, physical tension and emotional trauma. After doing TRE, many people report reduction in anxiety and tension; greater emotional resilience; an improved ability to interact with others; improved sleep; healing of muscular injuries; and a reduction in physical pain.
TRE® is designed to be a self-help tool that, once learned, can be used as needed throughout one’s life, thereby continuously supporting and promoting physical, mental and emotional health and wholeness. It can be taught either as a simple, self-help tension reduction technique, or as an effective complementary practice when integrated with other treatment modalities by those in the healing professions. This includes the treatment of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and anxiety disorder recovery.
It can be taught in large groups for communities that have experience mass trauma, and can promote cohesiveness and openness between participants and can enable individuals to re-connect with themselves and re-engage with others, thus helping traumatized groups regain a sense of community.
While TRE is a safe and effective stress release technique for most people, it should not be used as a substitute for trauma recovery procedures of a medical or psychiatric/psychological nature. Individual with physical or psychological conditions requiring strict regulation, individual with fragile psychological defenses, a complex history of trauma or restricting physical or medical conditions should consult their medical practitioner or a certified TRE® provider prior to performing these exercises.