You will meet your therapist before the course for an assessment. This is usually a one hour consultation, accompanied by a detailed questionnaire you will have completed in advance. The assessment is a good opportunity for both you and the therapist to make an informed decision as to whether AT is the right choice for you at that time. Very occasionally, AT might be deemed unsuitable for you, depending on your health situation at the time. No promise about outcome is ever made.
If you have been referred specifically for a medical condition, or in the unusual event of a complicated medical history emerging during the assessment, the therapist, if not medically qualified, will ask your permission to liaise with your relevant health professional if necessary.
All clients are given individual monitoring during the training.
The decision may be simple, if the therapist doesn’t run groups! A plan of appointments is made – usually weekly, but this can vary according to convenience.
Each session will contain explanation of the theory and practice of each new exercise as it is reached. The course is cleverly structured so that a new exercise is learned each week, the new part incorporated into what has already been practised. You will report on how your practice is going. You will keep a brief daily diary, to record your observations, insights as they occur, and of course your queries.
At the final session a date is made for you to return for a follow-up / refresher.
Often therapists use health/psychological measuring tools at the start and finish of courses – these are useful and help you realise what progress has been made, and what issues might need further work.
We cannot over-emphasise the subtleties of AT – there are no blinding flashes of realisation (except sometimes!). Therapists often observe quiet change: a face looking less strained, the eyes more relaxed and brow ‘open’.