My name is Naomi Shtilman, Omi for short. I work in Portland, OR and specialize in rock climbing psychotherapy.

Above and beyond traditional talk-therapy, climbing psychotherapy increases a person's capacity to be present with and constructively navigate their own emotional responses.

Climbing psychotherapy promotes full body integration, increases confidence, self-awareness, and promotes a general sense of self-efficacy. ItĀ utilizes the latest findings from neuroscience to support creating new experiences, and therefore new neuropathways in the brain.

Anyone can benefit from climbing psychotherapy!

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What is Rock Climbing Psychotherapy?

In climbing psychotherapy, we use climbing to stimulate the body and mind, engaging clients holistically. Climbing is a safe environment for clients to witness their own challenges, and practice new techniques.

Climbing is also a source of bilateral stimulation. Bilateral stimulation is the use of visual, auditory, or tactile external stimuli occurring in a rhythmic side-to-side pattern. It is a core element of eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) therapy, a common treatment for post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Using the act of climbing, we promote embodiment as a means of developing mindfulness techniques, self-awareness, and other skillsets that support emotional regulation.

The development of these skills in conjunction with exploring your mental health challenges results in a holistic treatment of mind and body.

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Why Climb?

In 2005, a study was released demonstrating that eight weeks of climbing psychotherapy can reduce depression to sub-clinical levels in previously diagnosed individuals.

A 2013 study confirmed these results. Additionally, this study demonstrated that individuals who undergo climbing psychotherapy benefited from an increase in self-confidence and a sense of self-efficacy.

Further studies have shown that climbing psychotherapy reduces depression and anxiety.

In short, we climb because it works.