What Is BodyTalk?

BodyTalk System, a holistic therapy grounded in the belief that living organisms have the capability to heal themselves more effectively than any technology used today, combines elements of both Eastern and Western medicine to facilitate personal healing and growth.

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The BodyTalk System

Was developed in the 1990s by Dr. John Veltheim, an Australian chiropractor, acupuncturist, and teacher. Contributing factors to the development of this treatment method include Veltheim’s postgraduate studies in kinesiology, bioenergetic psychology, sports medicine, and counseling, among others, and his search to meet his own healthcare needs while dealing with a life‑threatening illness. He traveled the world to find answers, exploring alternative remedies in both Eastern and Western medicine, and an osteopath in New Zealand introduced him to techniques that eventually became the foundation for the BodyTalk System.

In 1998, as his health began to improve, Veltheim moved to Sarasota, Florida to further establish his developing practice. In 2000, Dr. John Veltheim and his wife Esther Veltheim founded the International BodyTalk Association. Today, the BodyTalk System is practiced by over 200 instructors in over 50 countries around the world.

In addition to the classic form of the BodyTalk System, BodyTalk professionals have developed an adapted version called BodyTalk Access. The BodyTalk Access program teaches individuals, groups, and organizations a simple set of energy‑based techniques to promote self‑healing. These BodyTalk Access techniques, designed to help people manage daily challenges to well‑being and maintain whole‑body health, can be used at home, school, or work, by any individual.


This approach, which is sometimes described as acupuncture without needles, purports a person to listen to their body, engage its ability to heal itself, and enhance communication between bodily systems.

Based on the dynamic systems theory, BodyTalk considers emotional, physical, and environmental influences in order to address the underlying cause of conditions, and using various techniques to activate the brain, restructure the body’s energetic patterns, and promote healing from within.

Practitioners of the method, known as the BodyTalkers, seek to discover which parts of the body’s “electrical system” are malfunctioning. They then make contact with specific points across the body, using their hands to “make repairs.” Tapping, breathing, and other forms of touch are used to stimulate the brain to employ natural healing procedures. The resulting effect is believed to improve the energy balance within the body.

BodyTalk System Principles

The approach is based on the following principles:

  • The body can heal itself: BodyTalk utilizes what is known as the “innate wisdom” of the body to heal itself in order to recover from any and all types of injury.
  • Stress impacts overall health: Every experience a person goes through contributes to that person’s state of health. Lifestyle, genetics, history, and environment all impact the body’s functions. Stresses produced by external factors can interfere with the natural communication systems within the body. This interference prevents the body from functioning at its best and can lead to emotional and physical health issues.
  • The body communicates via energetic circuitry: Every aspect of our being—cells, atoms, and neurons—is in communication with each other constantly. Each bodily system communicates via energetic circuitry for optimal functioning. Stress can compromise the circuitry systems (the nervous system, for example) and create a chronic breakdown of communication within the “bodymind complex.” Practitioners of BodyTalk strive to connect these broken lines and facilitate open communication between all of the elements of the body in order to promote healing from within.

BodyTalk Processes and Techniques

The process of BodyTalk can be broken down into these three steps, the "ABCs" of BodyTalk:


Practitioners pay attention to what the body is doing in order to decipher information. They "ask" the body questions and get answers by observing how various muscles tense and relax. This natural biofeedback loop is used to identify and prioritize the healing needs of the body. Questions are also asked verbally so the BodyTalker can gather information about a person’s experience and begin to tailor treatment to that person’s specific needs.


After gathering information about the needs of the body, BodyTalkers chart and prioritize several ways to bring balance to the body and mind. Techniques such as tapping the head and chest are used to signal the brain and heart to prepare to heal and restructure.


The final phase of the process attempts to relink the systems in the body and repair any lines of communication that have been compromised. Tapping focuses on various points throughout the body, including what is known as the "energy circuits." More efficient and effective healing is believed to be the result when systems are restored and energy can flow between them.

Techniques in the BodyTalk System

One of the most important techniques used in the BodyTalk System is the cortices technique. This technique, which is based on the premise that the brain functions electromagnetically and can sometimes “blow fuses,” is designed to bring balance to both halves of the brain by repairing these fuses. This process is believed to strengthen function in the brain and body and improve the “bodymind's” response to stress. In this technique, the practitioner places one hand over the back of the head and, with the other hand, begins to gently tap parts of the head, sending signals to both sides of the brain. This is followed by gentle tapping of the chest.

This process is repeated for each part of the head, always moving up along the centerline of the brain. The tapping is believed to form a "bridge" between the hemispheres of the brain, creating a “standing wave" to allow the energy fields to interact with one another, reopening the electrical communication between both hemispheres. The goal of the process is to improve brain efficiency and overall health.

Issues Treated With BodyTalk

The BodyTalk System can treat a number of physical and mental health issues, but it is designed to improve the body and mind as a whole. Systemic treatment tailored individually to each person seeking treatment is intended to promote balance and healing. BodyTalkers believe when the 36 surface energy points are balanced, people will experience improvement in all areas, including mood, energy level, muscle tension, and overall bodily function.
The approach can also be used to address systems of posttraumatic stressdepressionanxietychronic pain, and insomnia.

Source: https://www.goodtherapy.org/learn-about-therapy/types/body-talk-system