Somatic perception is quite literally your first person experience of what it's like to be in your own body. Hanna noted that this kind of experience is distinctly different from experiencing your own body from the point of another person, such as a doctor, chiropractor or massage therapist.
Early pioneers in the field of Somatics education included F M Alexander (Alexander Technique), Gerda Alexander, Elsa Gindler and Moshe Feldenkrais. Yoga and Tai Chi can also be considered as a form of Somatic Education. All of these disciplines foster a deep sense of internal awareness and an ability to control ones body in space.
However it is Thomas Hanna's discovery of sensory motor amnesia, and his understanding of the reflex patterns that our bodies create in response to stress that distinguishes Hanna Somatic Education from all other modalities past and present.
Somatics stands alone in its rapid and long term effectiveness in teaching people to reverse some of the mysterious, and supposedly structural, conditions responsible for chronic and often debilitating pain, sciatica, scoliosis, chronic back pain, herniated disks, and poor posture, to name a few."
Move Without Pain - Martha Peterson 2012