2020- Psycho-Sensory Processing Intervention


This three-day workshop will provide an integrated theoretical connection about the neurological interplay between attachment, developmental trauma and sensory processing issues. Participants will develop an understanding of the use of relational attunement as a regulatory influence that supports and stabilizes the arousal and sensory processing systems.

This workshop will uniquely blend the integration of attunement skills with sensory processing intervention. Therapists, teachers, and parents will learn how to put these two distinct interventions together as a mechanism for the development of self-regulation and mental health function. A combination of theory and practical trauma interventions will emphasize compassionate dialoguing skills, sensory strategies, postural control and movement techniques together with attachment theory and therapeutic relational process work. Learning will be facilitated through lecture, story-telling, group problem-solving from case examples, role plays and active reflection.


Participants will be able to:

  • Explain how attachment strategies are functionally adaptive in relation to developmental trauma
  • Describe the connection between trauma, arousal and sensory processing challenges
  • Discuss how the use of relational attunement skills and therapeutic use of self can stabilize arousal and support sensory processing issues
  • Develop a repertoire of sensory processing strategies for the treatment of trauma
  • Understand how trauma impacts postural control
  • Learn to provide treatment intervention to the postural and movement system to affect change in the emotional responses to trauma (treating trauma through the body)
  • Begin to integrate a relational process approach within a sensory motor context


Kim Barthel, OTR

Choose to Learn - Kim Barthel, OTR

An innovator in connecting mental health and function, occupational therapist Kim Barthel has dedicated herself to bridging disciplines and opening minds. A proponent of “putting your mind in the mind of the other”, she teaches globally about understanding what’s behind complex behaviour.

Her specialties include attachment, trauma, addiction, sensory processing, movement, and learning. Neurobiology is integral to Kim’s focus – because the more we understand how the brain works, the more we can feel compassion for ourselves and others, naturally reducing the shame and division between us.

Sensory processing and the neurobiology of attachment, abuse and addiction are the emphasis of Kim’s current practice, writing and teaching. Certified in the S.I.P.T. and extensive clinical experience mentored by master clinicians has led Kim to develop expertise in Sensory Integration Therapy and what she calls “Sensory Processing Intervention”. Kim began studying sensory processing in 1982 while in university and has relentlessly researched, practiced and expanded her ideas in this field since those early days. Kim has brought the concepts of sensory processing to diverse populations, including children and adults with autism, attention deficit disorder, and fetal alcohol spectrum disorder, and also to populations with complex disorders that combine psychiatric etiology with attachment based challenges.


Day 1

8:30- 10:15Attachment strategies as functional adaptation to danger
10:30-noon Further Analysis of attachment strategies of adaptation to danger
1:00 – 4:30The art of regulation through relationship: lecture and video

Day 2

8:30- 10:15The interconnection between trauma, arousal and sensory processing
10:30-noon Sensory processing as treatment of trauma
1:00 – 2:30Sensory processing as the treatment of trauma
2:45 – 4:30How is trauma exhibited in the postural system

Day 3

8:30- 10:15Treating trauma through movement and posture
10:30-noon Treating trauma through movement and posture
1:00 – 4:30Compassionate dialoguing in the Sensory Environment