TRE – What is it? – an introduction

Tension Releasing Exercises - Berlin & Munich

Tension Releasing Exercises TRE® are relaxation exercises, an easy-to-learn do-it-yourself relaxation method. It consists of a few simple exercises that make the body or larger muscle groups vibrate, tremble or shake. In this way the body can reduce high tensions, which are stored in the musculature and the nervous system.

The TRE relaxation exercises are very easy to use.

After three sessions at the latest, you have understood how to do it and can continue practicing alone at home.

You don’t have to know, think or be able to do anything. During the exercises you only allow trembling and can observe how your body relaxes and returns to balance.

Why animals and humans tremble under stress

Animals in the wild reduce tensions in muscles and nervous system by this trembling. After a fight-, flight- or freezing reaction they tremble for several minutes and to rid themselves of the excess energy. Then they return to their herd as if nothing had happened.

People get into similarly difficult situations as mammals: through stress, burnout, accidents, strokes of fate, but also physical overstrain, e.g. during top athletic performances. Since adults suppress trembling due to cultural factors, however, the energy remains stored in the nervous system and leads to various stress symptoms.

The TRE relaxation exercises were originally created to help people in a disaster area. Earthquakes, tsunamis, war and military operations are still the classic areas of application today. The TRE relaxation exercises have helped many people in 34 countries to reduce the symptoms of high tension and nervousness that occur after such traumatic events.

When are TRE relaxation exercises used?

General application:

  • simply to relax
  • to loosen up
  • to release tensions, in particular Tensions deep in the pelvis

Application under stress:

  • after top athletic performance
  • in preparation for a competition
  • in stressful professional times
  • in conflict situations
  • according to physical or mental excessive demands

Application in case of trauma:

  • Accompanying to a trauma- or body therapy
  • after a traumatic event, e.g. a car accident or in a disaster area
  • during post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

A typical TRE session

You can learn the TRE relaxation exercises in an individual session or in a group. You will wear loose clothing or a tracksuit. In the first part you do a few body exercises such as knee bends to fatigue the muscles. In the second part, the autonomous trembling is initiated. This autonomous trembling can happen while standing or lying down. The tremor, shaking or vibrating lasts about 15 minutes. You can stop the condition at any time by stretching your legs. Then rest for one or two minutes. After that you can continue with your daily business.

Such a group exercise session lasts about 1 hour in total. – Later, if you already know TRE well, it will be enough if you practice TRE 3 times a week for 15 minutes.

Solch eine Übungs-Session dauert insgesamt ca. 1 Stunde. – Später, wenn Sie den Bogen einmal heraus haben, reicht es, wenn Sie sich 3 x pro Woche 15 Minuten für TRE Zeit nehmen.

In this short video you get an impression of what TRE can achieve.

What are the effects of TRE relaxation exercises?

Through the reduction of tension in the musculoskeletal system, you can self-regenerate better. The stress in the nervous system dissolves and you become noticeably calmer and more relaxed. Further effects can be:

  • Increase in energy
  • Improved sleep
  • Increased frustration tolerance
  • Less stress at work
  • Greater emotional range
  • Reduced body tension
  • Fewer relationship conflicts
  • Less fear and worry
  • Reduced symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

„With the healing of every traumatic episode of our lives, it becomes easier to give in and accept how the universe has treated us. The more we let go “into life”, the more paradoxically we discover that we can regain control of our lives and reenter the uncertainty of human life.” David Berceli, “The more we let go, the more paradoxically we discover that we can regain control of our lives and reenter the uncertainty of human life.”
David Berceli, Physical Exercises for Trauma Healing

Video by David Betcelli in which he explains the physiological context.

A book worth reading:

David Berceli, The Revolutionary Trauma Release Process: Transcend Your Toughest Times, 207 pages, 13,48 €, Namaste Publishing, ISBN 978-1897238400
In this inspiring book, Berceli describes what happens to people when they find themselves in extreme situations. Berceli has worked as a priest in crisis areas for many years, has experienced bomb attacks and the effects of trauma. He describes very vividly with many examples, which physical effects physical or emotional traumas and shocks have. He says that trauma does not have to be a lifelong imprisonment in the symptoms, but that a trauma also holds a great opportunity: that of transformation. At the end of the book he presents the TRE exercise sequence.

Websites of the TRE umbrella organisations:

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me in my practice in Berlin or Munich. Here you will find the contact page.