Somatic Yoga Rangiora
Somatic Movement Therapy 



Voluntary pandiculation is the main technique we use in Somatics to regulate the level of tension in our muscles. It is the act of contracting AND stretching  the muscles in the body. 

Pandiculation is generally defined as the act of stretching oneself and yawning, especially upon waking. However, our automatic pandicular response has far more significance than simply prompting us to stretch and yawn.

Pandiculation is the nervous system’s brilliant and natural way of waking up the sensory-motor system and preparing us to MOVE!

Humans, along with all vertebrate animals, tend to automatically pandiculate when we wake up or when we have been sedentary for a while. If you’ve ever seen a dog or cat arch their back when they get up from a nap, or watched a baby stretch their arms and legs as they wake up, you’ve witnessed the pandicular response.           

Pandiculation sends biofeedback to the brain regarding the level of contraction in our muscles, thereby helping to prevent the buildup of chronic muscular tension. This is an extremely important function of the pandicular response. 

Pandiculation contracts and releases muscles in such a way that the alpha-gamma feedback loop is naturally reset. This resetting reduces muscular tension and restores conscious, voluntary control over the muscles. 

Preventing the buildup of tension in our muscles is critical to maintaining healthy posture and movement throughout our lives.

Voluntary pandiculation has proved to be a groundbreaking movement technique. It quickly reduces muscular tension, and since it relaxes muscles through learning rather than passive manipulation (such as in stretching or massage), the effects are typically long-lasting.

Thich Nhat Hanh