Insight Mind Body Talk

Ep 31 Trauma-informed Weight Lifting with Mariah Rooney

April 03, 2022 Jessica Warpula Schultz, LMFT Season 1 Episode 31
Insight Mind Body Talk
Ep 31 Trauma-informed Weight Lifting with Mariah Rooney
Show Notes Transcript

Do you like to pick stuff up and set it down? Have you noticed the emotional benefits of moving your body in new and challenging ways?  In Trauma-informed Weight Lifting, Jess (she/her) and her guest Mariah Rooney (she/her), talk weight lifting and how building strength not only builds resilience but helps resolve past trauma.  Trauma-informed weight lifting is asking each of us to be curious, to be mindful, and to be open to new ways of healing old wounds.

Mariah, MSW, LICSW, RYT, is the co-founder of Trauma-informed Weight Lifting. Trauma-informed Weight Lifting is a program of the Center for Trauma and Embodiment at JRI. They work to make weightlifting fitness spaces and fitness and health professionals, trauma informed, inclusive, and responsive to all bodies, experiences and identities. They do this through their training program, conducting innovative research.  And developing weightlifting programs to support healing and resilience building.


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Produced by Jessica Warpula Schultz
Music by Jason A. Schultz
Edited by Jessica Warpula Schultz

 [00:00:00] Welcome to Insight Mind Body Talk, a body-based mental health podcast. We're your hosts, Jessica Warpula Schultz and Jeanne Kolker. Whether you've tried everything to feel better and something is still missing or you've already discovered the wisdom of the body. This podcast will encourage and support you in healing old wounds, strengthening relationships, and developing your inner potential- all by accessing the mind body connection. 

Please know, while we're excited to share and grow together. This podcast is not intended to be a substitute for mental health treatment. It doesn't replace the one-on-one relationship you have with a qualified healthcare professional and is not considered psychotherapy. 

Thanks Jess. And thank you for listening. Now, let's begin a conversation about what happens when we take an integrative approach to improving our wellbeing. Welcome to Insight Mind Body Talk. My name is Jess. I'm a licensed marriage and family [00:01:00] therapist.

And your host today's episode is titled "Trauma-informed Weight Lifting". My guest is Mariah Rooney. Mariah is a licensed clinical social worker who specializes in treating the complex challenges that arise as a result of traumatic stress. Attachment trauma, intergenerational trauma and association in children and adults.

She is also an assistant professor in the graduate school of social work at Winnona State University and a consultant with the trauma informed care team at the American Institutes of Research. Additionally, Mariah is a registered yoga teacher. She has considerable training and trauma sensitive and culturally informed yoga and meditation practices through Warriors at Ease, Prison Yoga Project, Insight Prison Project, Mind Body Solutions, and Trauma Sensitive Yoga.[00:02:00] 

Her writing and research has explored post-traumatic outcomes among combat veterans with histories of interpersonal violence, trauma, sensitive education, as well as outcomes among traumatized youth in an outpatient setting, using a sensory based intervention. 

Mariah is the co-founder of Trauma-informed Weight Lifting. Trauma-informed Weight Lifting is a program of the Center for Trauma and Embodiment at JRI. They work to make weightlifting fitness spaces and fitness and health professionals, trauma informed, inclusive, and responsive to all bodies, experiences and identities. They do this through their training program, conducting innovative research. And developing weightlifting programs to support healing and resilience building. I'm so excited to have you here today. Mariah. Welcome to [00:03:00] Insight Mind Body Talk. Thank you. Thank you so much for having me . . We're here to talk about weightlifting, a lot of people probably have not even heard of the concept of trauma informed weightlifting. You know, we hear, maybe I hear a lot about trauma from yoga as a mental health professional. The general public, I think, is starting to understand that there's trauma-informed yoga programs.

We have them at Insight as well, several of them, but this idea of trauma-informed weight lifting as someone who also practices this. I'm really curious as to how you found, you know, bringing trauma, sensitive education and training into weight lifting.

Yeah. I mean, how weird. Right. And conceptually people, some people hear it and they're like, oh, that makes a lot of sense. And for other folks, it's just, it's just seems so bizarre. And all of that makes sense. And for good reason I mean, for me, you know, personally what brought me to this intersection was my own history with weightlifting.

So as a weightlifter [00:04:00] being in spaces with, uh, You know, being really fortunate to be in spaces with coaches who I think really naturally embodied being very inclusive and welcoming. And I think. Showed up in very trauma-informed ways without even being intentional about it. And then also being in spaces with the opposite of that being in spaces that felt really toxic and harmful and not welcoming to me and to other people.

So there was that coupled with, you know, generally the through-line in all of my work is, is trauma, but more so than that is. It's our body minds, right? Like how is it that we move through our lives and through the world and our relationships in these vessels and when hard things, terrible things happen to us well, isn't that the place that we need to start and attend to, right.

Or at least be really, really attuned to in that work. So, that became obvious in my work as a yoga teacher in different settings. But then as I started lifting, I was thinking. This is pretty awesome. I feel really good. I see people [00:05:00] around me feeling so good. I hear, you know, I was lucky enough to be a part of a weightlifting team with, with a large number of women.

And a lot of women had shared horrible things that had happened in their past traumatic experiences. And they found so much community in weightlifting and also found, I think a lot of experiences of embodied strength that they hadn't had before. And so. Things just started to kind of click together.

And then when I started talking about it out loud with other people, it started to make a little bit more sense. And so it was a very organic process, which to me was a good sign. But that didn't seem like there had to, you had to like force fit two pieces together. And I just hold generally. I think making anything trauma-informed makes it better.

 It just means, you know, it means that we're being more considerate and attuned that we're taking steps to, to do less harm and to be more inclusive and responsive and things like that. So there's also this kind of bigger answer. Just why not, you know, if it can benefit people, then why not?

Agreed. Agreed. How [00:06:00] did Trauma-informed Weight Lifting, the actual organization come together. Yeah, well, initially it wasn't, I was reminded of this the other day, actually, when I was talking to Mark Schneider, who's the co-founder along with me, mark was a coach of mine years and years ago. And I had sent an email off to a handful of coaches that I knew and that I really respected.

And I said, Hey, I have this idea and they don't totally know what to do with. Or any of you interested in talking? And mark was the only one that responded. And so we S we started riffing over email and then. I would say over a couple of years, it was lots of coffee or sitting at the gym and scratching notes out and writing on napkins and papers.

And just saying like, what is, what is happening here? What could be happening here? What makes sense? What doesn't, what do you think, what other people think? And it was a lot of exploration and curiosity and then, you know, leaving each other and coming back together and then exploring more. Then [00:07:00] I was really lucky.

I was for a period of time, I was at the trauma center in Boston and had connected with, uh, Dave Emerson and Jen Turner who are the co-founders of the Center for Trauma and Embodiment and the developers of trauma sensitive yoga, and in conversations with them, they're like, wait, what. Two, and that actually fits really well with what we're trying to do.

It's the exact kind of thing that we're wanting to be a part of the Center for Trauma and E mbodiment, which is trauma informed embodiment practices and movement practices. And so we started exploring your relationship with them. And then a couple of years ago made that, made that a more formal thing.

So we're really lucky now to be a part of something bigger that I think helps helps us in so many ways. I really, it resonates with me when you. Talk about, conversing with like-minded people and how these conversations happen. A lot of the time on the gym floor and, you know, in those moments and, and how it builds.

And, for me, in my journey of becoming a trauma informed personal trainer, I movement was always really hard. And I [00:08:00] learned over time through my education, you know, as a client in therapy and then becoming a therapist that really movement was just popping me out of my window of policy. Repeatedly. And I grew up with a panic disorder. . and weightlifting was the first thing I could stick with, 

and I wasn't getting popped out of my window because I wasn't doing, you know, a aerobic activity, which usually is what was mimicking the same symptoms as a panic attack, which was hard for me. So that really was my way of discovering. You could build the strength and you could have this nervous system reset. and it was so powerful 

And then once it started coming together, I would email authors of books like Lou Schuler. My favorite book is "The new rules of weightlifting for women" and told them, I think I want to do this. Like, what do you think about this? And so generous and kind of respond and email with me and, you know, it's just, yeah, it's just so great.

How people do want to make things more trauma informed [00:09:00] or are interested in, in whatever way we can helping people heal and then bringing that out into the world. .

Right. Let's get into the nitty gritty then. What, what do you mean when you say trauma-informed weight lifting?

Yeah, good question. Oh, so many things. I mean, first you think it's helpful to think about what we mean by tr I mean, you can break each of this, each of these things down, right? Like trauma, a trauma informed weightlifting, and it might be worthwhile exploring that a little bit because one thing that I'll say right off the bat is if you notice in her name, the words, weight and lifting are separated.

Intentional decision, because when you see the word together weightlifting with no space, it's mostly referring to the sport of weightlifting. So, you know, Olympic weightlifting, powerlifting things, things like that. And we, we just wanted to say, look like, we're just talking about lifting weights. We're talking about resistance training.

We're talking about [00:10:00] picking heavy stuff up and putting it down and, you know, using resistance. In any shape or form, it could be body weight. It could be, you know, we don't care that piece doesn't matter, but we want it to be intentional to say like this, we're just talking about this, probably. So I think that's one piece to, to kind of highlight.

And then, you know, we talk a lot in our trainings about both what is really important about language and also what just doesn't matter because labels get thrown around so much and they lose meaning so quickly unless we're paying attention to them in really thoughtful ways. And. We talk about, about what do we mean by trauma?

What do we not mean by trauma? How is defining trauma important and how has it not? And so we explore things like you know, concepts and thinking about what diagnoses are available or not available. And ultimately where we land with everyone is. Language is up to the individual, right? It is someone who has a lived experience in something gets to define and label their own experience.

And that's not for us. Right. So you [00:11:00] could swap out trauma for adverse experiences, tough stuff. Chronic stress, how, you know, whatever people want to use to describe their experience, that part is up to them. Where are you using it to say, look like we acknowledge that people experience things that are incredibly overwhelming to them emotionally, psychologically to their nervous systems, to their body.

And that have long-term effects and we care about people having a lot of different options out in the world for how they take care of themselves, how they heal, how they recover, how they tap into their strength and resilience. All kinds of. And so, you know, all of this is a very long-winded answer, but all that, to say that, to be informed by trauma means that you are willing to consider first that trauma happens to understand what it, what it means.

So what happens to the body? What happens to the nervous system? What can happen psychologically? How does it manifest for people? And. And to also, we take a really explicit [00:12:00] anti-oppressive approach in our work, and we're deeply committed to being social justice oriented in this work, which means that we also have to recognize that trauma disproportionately impacts folks who hold one or multiple intersecting marginalized identities.

And so there's a layer to that. That's also really important that if you're going to be trauma informed, you also have to recognize the ways in which systems and other. Disproportionately oppressed and affect folks. So there's that piece, right? Understanding kind of from a sociopolitical or more contextual kind of frame, what that means.

Really, if I had to be super short about what trauma informed means, it means that you're willing to take a stance of curiosity. It means that you're willing to think and speak more in question marks and in periods that you're willing to see something in front of you like a behavior that's maybe really challenging or seemingly off putting and say, huh, I wonder what's going on for this person.

I wonder if there's something that has happened that makes this thing that I see happening in front of me makes [00:13:00] sense. Yeah. Even though my immediate reaction is to label it or to pathologize it or to say that it's this or that, that instead, if you get to back up and say, huh, huh? Like to me, huh. Is being trauma-informed because it means you're open and you're curious, and you don't have all the answers and you're willing to look at that person and say, I want to understand what might've happened to you in your life instead of what's wrong with.

Definitely. Yes. Yes. Understanding what happened versus what's wrong with you? I agree. Yeah, absolutely. Tell me more about why for you. Weightlifting is unique in this capacity. How, how we can tap into things. Maybe we can't tap into, unless we're lifting, picking things up and putting them back down. Yeah, that's great.

Well, there's things that we think and there are things that we don't know that we kind of theorize. But I want to also acknowledge that like [00:14:00] research and evidence only gets you so far. We also there's anecdotal evidence and lived experience is super valuable, right? So it doesn't have to just be a research study done to, sorry, my dog's coming to say hello to tell us that something is.

You know, valid or that that's the reason why, but some of the things that we believe in that we see and that we hear are that having an external stimulus is a really powerful experience, right? So let's say I'm someone that has experienced a lot of trauma in my life. And maybe one of the ways that I cope with things that are really hard and overwhelming is I'm dissociated.

You know, I dissociate, I disconnect from my body or from myself or from the world because that's a, that's a really helpful way for me to cope with things. Well, if you put someone like me in this instance in a you know, if we, if we, if we play this out as an example in a yoga class that might be helpful or might be really overwhelming for me it might be really hard for me to tune into my body, but all of a sudden, You put me in a different setting and I've got a barbell in my [00:15:00] hands or on my back or a kettlebell or something like that.

There is something outside of my body that I can feel and touch and hold in. That, that, there's something about that external stimulus that we hear and we see is so grounding and organizing for people a lot of the times it's an, or it orients. To space into our bodies. So there's that. And then there's just those moments when you feel like a bad-ass right.

Like, oh my goodness. I never thought I could do that. I didn't think I could deadlift that or not that it has to be a bazillion pounds. It certainly doesn't. But maybe the first time you get a pull-up or. You know, whatever it may be for anyone who has done anything like, you know, weightlifting or something like it, when you've accomplished something that you didn't think you could do before you learn that you can actually trust yourself.

You're like, oh, that was a scary thing that I didn't think I could do. Or I really questioned myself or question my ability. And all of a sudden I find myself doing it [00:16:00] and that can be an incredibly transformative experience. And it makes me think too about, you know, even so safety thinking about safety and you know, that, that regulation that can happen when you're able to, like you said, that external force push against or pull.

And I think that, sometimes, the gym is such a great place to practice or anywhere you're moving your body, you know, even safe failure. Like what does it feel? To lift till you can't lift anymore. And I think, you know, the unknown can be so overwhelming and, and yet here's a place we can practice safely.

What happens when we do push ourselves to the limit. And when we do challenge yourself and that also builds trust, I was petrified. Just squat to failure until my coach was like, I am right here and we'll figure this out together. And I've got you and to get over that hump and to, you know, connect the [00:17:00] dots and know I was able to get through that.

And I was there for myself and I learned how to safely be with myself through the whole process. I mean, it is really transformative and yet you feel like a bad-ass like, it is wonderful. What weightlifting does it really does bring a different part of people alive, I think.

And I see time and time again with clients where they tap into this part, or they say for the first time that they believe they're an athlete yeah, absolutely. And. There's so many opportunities for transformative experiences through movement and, you know, weightlifting is one of them and there's something unique about every form of movement, I believe.

And, and thank goodness that we have so many options. So you're highlighting some really important points, which is what it's like to feel powerful and trauma robs us of that. Right. It makes us, it disconnects us from ourselves, from others, from the world. It, it robs us of agency and choice. And it's a [00:18:00] really cool thing to experience through your body.

Something fundamentally different than what trauma has taught. And so I do think that there's something really, really cool about weightlifting resistance training, about different forms of exercise when you have those moments, you're like, yeah, yeah, I did that. I can do that. Or like you said, failing, but trusting that that's also okay.

And part of the process, right? Like same as true for trauma recovery. That process is not linear. It is not this. Hunky Dory, smooth sailing process. It is bumpy. You know, we see things improve for a while and then sometimes they get worse for awhile or they plateau for a while. The same is true for lifting and I find that parallel process to be pretty dang cool.

And all that to say, too. I think it's important to acknowledge that sometimes. True. Right. Like sometimes we work with people too, who are lifters, who have a lot of re-traumatizing or triggering experiences in the gym and in lifting. [00:19:00] And that's also a part of our work is to support people in, uh, addressing those things.

And in working through them, if that's the right path that like anything, there's also opportunities for things to not feel good. And that's also okay. That figuring out. How do you listen to yourself? How do you trust yourself as a, as a, like a wise trusted source of information? Is this something that needs to change in the environment that you're in?

Is there something that you need to know that your coach needs to be really attuned to and change so that this feels safer for you? It's also why we spend so much time talking about with trainers and coaches, like what do we do to make spaces more welcoming and inclusive, right. And what do we do to address some of the, the toxic fitness culture that's out there that makes spaces for really unwelcoming and unsafe for people.

So I also want to acknowledge both, right? That it's not this isn't all like rainbows and sunshine and unicorns all the time for people. That definitely is true. And it's part of what is so. Uh, when this does feel really [00:20:00] great. And then on the other side, we have to do the work to make spaces and people safer.

And I mean, you're gonna hear me say the same words over and over again. Cause I think it's important for not welcoming for not inclusive. If we're not responsive, then we're not being trauma informed. And love that you brought that up through my training as a sensory motor, psychotherapist that's I think the first time where I felt like the next level of understanding that may be perhaps for someone they're feeling regulated and safe. And then, you know, we sit down in a chest press machine and there's a fight response that comes out, you know, anger and frustration.

And. For the average trainer if they didn't understand what was happening, it, it would just look like anger, but Sometimes if we feel a threat, , we become hyper Rouse. Maybe we have a flee response or a fight response. And sometimes we freeze or feel shut down and, perhaps slowing down and exploring and [00:21:00] going, you know, back into a why, why would my nervous system feel like a push is a threat? And why would that stimulate something 

and then how can we. Adapt that, how can we work through that? What do we need? Maybe it is to work through it. Maybe it is to just say, well, that's information to have about yourself and that's okay. You don't have to fill in every pothole. You can just walk around them, you know? And, Then we learn how can we modify a workout so that it feels safe . And we start really adapting that, that movement to exactly what they need at that time. And what will help you feel regulated and safe again in the space.

 Once someone said to me, the gym is a life threat. This entire space is a threat. I am feeling almost completely shut down and associated right now.

 I think You're right. What can we do as health professionals to really recognize that people deserve to move your bodies, feel safe, feel strong. And it's up to us to create that environment that [00:22:00] everybody feels that way.

Yeah, that, that that's part of the curiosity piece. Right? So when we work with folks, it's not, it's not assuming safety cause that's, it's a pretty dangerous thing to do. Right? That's another thing that we've talked about is something that I find to be really problematic in our language around trauma and being trauma informed is there's a lot of discussion about being a safe person, creating safe spaces and yeah, that's true.

We don't get to define what's safe for people and what's safe for one person might be inherently unsafe for another, which is why we have to be open and adaptable because for this person that you're describing, right. They're walking in and I would want to get really curious about, okay, like what, like.

What is this person orienting to? Like, what are they noticing? That's telling them in their system, like, this is a really unsafe space for me to be in. Because that helps you, right? Like, what is, what is, where is there opportunity for that person to work through some of those triggers so that those things don't hold the same power.

And then where are there [00:23:00] things that need to be changed? Right? Like, is the music really offensive? Is there a ton of like really loud noises that maybe are too much and too overwhelming? Are there people doing or saying things that are unwelcoming or unsafe, you know, is the imagery unwelcoming? I think about how many times I talk, we've talked to people in our research who have said, I like I go into spaces and I don't even see pictures that look like me.

No, everyone on the wall is like a, uh, a white, European looking person with blonde hair and blue eyes. And, you know, in a six pack like that, doesn't make me feel welcome is like a large bodied person or as a trans person or as a person of color, you know, the. So what again, what makes one Mo make what, excuse me, makes one person feel safe.

May not make another person feel safe. So we don't get to guarantee safety. We just get to be curious about what would help someone in most spaces, not those times. And then. And be willing to, to make some adaptations and do what we can do [00:24:00] less harm and then do good. That's what we say. These are work to do us harm and then focus on doing good.

Cause if you buy, if you bypass that first part, you just focus on doing good, then you're not attuning to and attending to the things. That can continue to re-traumatize and cause harm to people. And then we're not, actually, we're not actually doing the work then. We're just, it's more of kind of like that, that part in every one of us that wants to, you know, have help people and make things better.

But sometimes it doesn't want to do the work the best, your harder work around doing less time. Oh, great. I think, in my experience as a fitness professional I it's, it is interesting. I think that bringing more of a trauma informed approach is really essential and it isn't that people are choosing not to do it in the fitness industry or gyms.

I don't think at least in my experience it's really on any. Day-to-day radar quite yet. It is in the stories you ask any coach or trainer, and they can tell you the stories [00:25:00] of resiliency and strength and, and the way people are utilizing movement to, to learn more about themselves and to heal and grow.

But I do think, , the. The macro level does need a little bit of shift that systemic, you know, approach to fitness does need to become more trauma informed. 

, Tell me a little bit about the research that trauma-informed weightlifting has been a part of and what you're looking at, what you're exploring through weightlifting and through trauma. Yeah, gladly.

So our primary study to date, we interviewed weightlifters, who self-identified as having histories of trauma and. Really what we wanted to do. You know, there's research out there that shows that exercise, including resistance training can have really positive effects on our mental health, including trauma, trauma, PTSD, symptomatology.

We don't know a lot about the mechanisms, like what levers are pulled, what is it that makes things like resistance, training and [00:26:00] weightlifting effective at doing those things? We also don't have research that tells us stories about the experiences of folks who have experienced trauma, who engage in weightlifting.

And we really wanted to start there. We didn't want to start kind of going out into the field and say, let's prove out that we have something awesome. We said, no, let's figure out what maybe we don't have, right. Or where we can be better. By listening to people about their experiences and we lifting what has been really helpful to them.

What's been transformative for them. What's been harmful for them. What's made them feel safe. What's been feel unsafe. What barriers have shown up? What do they think would make a space? You know, more trauma informed or make a coaching relationship, more trauma informed. And so we did that and we, we, we had just, it was such a powerful experience to listen to all of these stories and to learn from folks.

And right now we're in the kind of data analysis and writing phase of that study. So we'll, we'll publish it probably a couple or a few articles out of that, out of that study. And then I'm also working with a team of researchers that's doing an [00:27:00] audit or review of the primary certifying bodies, educational materials.

So essentially, like if you look at that, let's say, you know, the top 10 certifying bodies. So like ACE and Nazism and CSCs and these different, these different groups. You know, and this isn't to point fingers at anyone. It's just to say, like, in the, in, in this field, when you get trained as a personal trainer, as a coach, what do you learn?

And what do you not learn about mental health and about trauma and about the relationship between the coach and the client and what do you learn or not learn about self-awareness and we want to be able to paint a picture of this. Not that people are doing things wrong, but here's a real opportunity in the field for us collectively to do better, to learn more, to pay more attention in these ways so that we can all do better.

And so that is another piece that we're working on. And, and then we are also doing some research with a really wonderful researcher at the University of Minnesota, taking a look at You know, kind of in a, more of a one-on-one setting, what happens when a coach takes a trauma informed approach?

What are those [00:28:00] experiences like for the client? That's in the very beginning stages, so I don't have as many more details to share about that right now. And then we're also doing some surveys just to explore in the broader field. What are coaches and trainers, attitudes towards taking a trauma informed approach?

What do they even think about that? Do they think about it? And the last piece I mentioned is one that we're at. We've been actively trying to get a grant or funding for anyone listening to this as a funding opportunity for us, we're all ears, but we have a really wonderful opportunity to do a pilot study with.

 A few residential treatment facilities in the Boston area that work with youth and young adults who have histories of trauma. They're really eager to roll out a trauma-informed weight lifting program and some of their facilities. And we are really eager to partner with them on that, but we want to be sure that we're learning and able to learn in a way that allows others to replicate what works well and then to improve on the things that.

Yeah, we learned don't work so well. [00:29:00] So that's another study that we're hoping to do in the, not so distinctive. That sounds so exciting. And that's such a great time, right? When we think about how much our brain grows and in our adolescent years to really help, you know, neurons that fire together wire together That's just really that's so cool.

I mean, good luck to that. Yeah. Anyone listening and I look forward to hearing more about it. 

 So How can people learn more about you take one of your courses or, expand their understanding of, of weightlifting through a trauma informed.

Sure. Yeah. Our primary focus right now is on training trainers and coaches and our trainings are open to anyone. So we have folks who are occupational therapists, physical therapists, medical providers, mental health providers, lifters themselves, come through.

It's a 30 hour training that we have right now. And we'll be in the future launching a full certification program, which will be a much more in-depth program that. Consultation opportunities where we work with coaches and trainers individually or in groups, or with [00:30:00] gyms, if they want to, you know, make some moves or start thinking about what this could look like for them or how they could take more of a trauma informed approach in their work or their space.

 You can go to our website, traumainformedweightlifting.com for information. Any of this stuff, including the research that we're working on or to get in touch with us. And then Instagram's another way to kind of follow along. I also tell people, go ahead. If you, if you are interested, sign up for the emails on our website, we don't send them often at all.

But when we do, it's usually like here's an announcement about a training that we have, or a new research project that we're working on. And we're looking to recruit participants, or we just want you to know about this new thing that's happening. We also are. So. Lucky that we, we keep stepping into these really cool collaborations and relationships with people in the community so that we can keep learning and growing and improving.

And so that we can find, you know, for example, I'm doing some work right now with someone who runs a training academy focused on adaptive training. So for folks with limb loss and with spinal cord injuries physical [00:31:00] disabilities as well as folks doing really powerful work and working with the trans clients and thinking about, you know, for example, like how do you work with a client in a really supportive way, in an agenda affirming way or post-top surgery, or, you know, like being really kind of centering and leveraging the lived experience of folks that we can keep.

One, like elevating the work that other people are doing and say, Hey, go, go check out these folks. They're doing super cool stuff. If you want, you need to learn about these things. And then yeah. And so we'll keep building partnerships and growing our offerings and who knows what will happen in the future, but we're we're excited to be in the space with, with people and, and, uh, Learning alongside everyone.

Yeah. Well, I'm excited. You're here and I know I want to take your trauma informed course, and I love the idea of a certification program. I think, , that's really lacking for us health professionals is how do we become certified and, further our understanding and education. So that's really exciting.

And I will say your [00:32:00] Instagram is like one of my favorite ones out there. You know, uh, the posts are amazing, so affirming, so informative, and also going back to the idea of social justice and really connecting all communities and being inclusive. Uh, trauma from weightlifting has really expanded my knowledge of other resources out there and what other people are doing just really connected to all communities and spreading the love and letting other people know about all these other wonderful practitioners out there.

We're really doing wonderful work. So I appreciate how, Trauma-informed Weight Lifting is really educate everybody about all the resources that are. Thank you. That's actually a really huge compliment because I think we are, we make mistakes all the time and we have to learn from them.

And that's one way that we do it right. Is by learning from other people. And, and, and also like we didn't invent this, right. I mean, we, we may have created [00:33:00] something, but ultimately people have been doing. Really powerful embodiment, healing work forever. Like the roots of all of this trace back to indigenous practices that I think are important to acknowledge like other folks in the world, in the community who are doing this work.

And we all need, I think, to keep learning and growing. And I don't think anything is trauma-informed. If it's not collaborative. And if it's not, I'm open to, you know, sort of learning and improving and finding ways that we can do things better. So for, for us, it's, I think it's a necessity to be in community with other people and to be collaborating.

And instead of feeling like we have to step in and be, you know, the, be the thing for all the people, actually, there's really credible people out there doing this work and doing it much better than us. So let's talk about those folks and let's focus on what we can do really well and then just be, be in community.

Yes. Agreed. Thank you so much for being here and, listeners, look them up. Trauma informed [00:34:00] weightlifting.com. And thank you. Thank you, Mariah. Thank you for having me.

Thank you again for joining us on Insight Mind Body Talk, a body-centered mental health podcast. We hope today's episode was empowering and supported you in strengthening your mind-body connection We're your hosts Jeanne and Jess. Please join us again as we continue to explore integrative approaches to wellbeing. Until then, take care.