Body awareness and self-regulation in physical therapy

Complementary therapies for treating survivors of torture

Vargas, C., O’Rourke, D. & Esfandian, M. Refuge: Canada’s Periodical on Refugees, 22(1), 129-137.
This article was reviewed by doctoral physical therapy student from the University of Minnesota, Angela Pitar, 2014.
Link to full text article from the Dignity-Danish Institute Against Torture is below.
Background - the assumptions that physical pain, unexplained by medical or physical findings, is psychosomatic in nature has been long standing and pervasive as was pain reported by survivors of torture attributed to psychological trauma.

Finding the Most Effective Ways to Help Children Affected by War

At CVT Jordan, one of the most powerful and successful things that we are doing on the physiotherapy team is the children’s group sessions. During my three and a half years as a physiotherapist at CVT, I have come to understand how important it is to include the parents in their children’s healing journey. In order to get the best results, at CVT we have modified our approach as we’ve learned from the children and their parents.

Interaction between patient and physiotherapist in psychiatric care : The physiotherapist's perspective

Gyllensten, A., Gard, G., Hansson, L., & Ekdahl, C. (2000), Advances in Physiotherapy, 2(4), 157-167.
This article was reviewed by Charlotte Hoium, physical therapy doctoral student at the University of Minnesota, 2014.
The article may be obtained free of charge from Dignity-Danish Institute Against Torture by emailing them at and including a list of desired articles.
Purpose:  to investigate what factors the physiotherapy experts in psychiatric physiotherapy believed to be important in the interaction between the patient and the physiotherapist.

Mind and body-Physiotherapy and complementary therapy

Hough, A. (1992). Paper presented at the International Conference of Centres, Institutions and Individuals Concerned With the Care of Victims of Organized Violence: Health , Political Repression and Human Rights, Santiago, Chile. 
This article was reviewed by University of Minnesota physical therapy doctoral student, Angela Pitar, 2014. 
The article may be obtained free of charge by emailing
Background - Torture victims often present with a multitude of problems and complementary therapy seeks to address each problem using a comprehensive and collaborative

Physiotherapy: Body-Centred Approach to Working with Victims of Torture and Trauma

By Veena O’Sullivan (Physiotherapist)* - BAppSc (Phty), MAppSc (Phty), Grad Dip (Counselling) Physical pain is rarely an isolated sensation, and is almost always accompanied by emotion and meaning. Traumatised clients tend to dissociate traumatic memory from feelings, as well as accompanying physiological sensations. Thus the emotional trauma gets trapped in the body, often somatised in the form of chronic physical pain. Clients are not necessarily able to identify that this is so, as the process is usually unconscious. In our physiotherapy sessions I guide clients to gain some insights as to how the body sensations, the feelings and images from traumatic experiences are inter-related. In doing so, clients gain a clearer awareness of the body-mind connections, and thereby are able to better understand how to prevent and/or release pain. ___ *Veena O’Sullivan has been a registered physiotherapist since 1981. She is a Sydney University graduate, with both undergraduate and post-graduate qualifications in physiotherapy (Bachelor and Master Degrees). She also has a Graduate Diploma in Counselling. She has worked both in Australia and overseas, with wide experience in clinical and academic settings. Currently, she works both in private physiotherapy practice and at STARTTS**. **STARTTS- Service for the Treatment and Rehabilitation of Torture and Trauma Survivors, Sydney Australia.