Somatherapy or simply Soma is a body-centered therapeutic-pedagogical group-oriented approach created 40 years ago in Brazil by writer-therapist Roberto Freire, who made use of a wide range of concepts and theories to give birth to a unique methodology.
With a focus on developing autonomy, Soma exercises and activities draw from the the concepts of body/emotion interconnection (Wilhelm Reich) and the vital organisation of the self (Gestalt Therapy), the studies of Antipsychiatry related to human communication and the Brazilian martial art/dance Capoeira Angola, shaped after traditional African rituals.
Soma groups last up to a year and a half, with 4 monthly encounters. These frequent sessions strengthen group dynamics and are grounded on the concepts of Anarchism. The uniqueness of Soma lies in the view of therapy as political pedagogy, where pleasure and freedom are the very antidotes against the neurosis brought about by hierarchized social relationships.