Autogenic Training

What is Autogenic Training ?

You do not have to be ill to be able to recover.

The Autogenic Training is a relaxation method by self-decontraction, invented by prof. Dr. J.H. Schultz. 

In this stressful world where we have less time for ourselves, finding ways to relax has become more and more important. Who has never lived through the pressures and dangers that our current lifestyles press upon us. They impregnate every aspect of our society and are difficult to counteract. We live in a world of great stress, stress that can be bad. There are permanently internal tensions, we have more time off but our sleep is no longer replenishing.


Despite a lot of compelling results from general medicine, more and more people have vague symptoms which stop them from functioning properly in their every day lives. The number of chronic illnesses keeps going up, not forgetting the modern phenomenon of burnout, as well as other symptoms caused by our society, continuously held under tension. Most of these problems could be avoided.


The Autogenic Training, a psycho-physiological method of relaxation, allows you to reach a state of relaxation, from a state of tension. The Autogenic Training allows your body and mind to relax step by step in a simple and structured manner. This state of relaxation is programmed thanks to formulas that we repeat. These internal sessions induce a deep state: the transition towards internal peace. After a while, this transmits into every day life.


With the help of a therapist, this technique, if applied often, regularly, systematically, induces a state of deep relaxation and well-being and can be harnessed relatively quickly. With practice, we can learn to concentrate, and from this, results a feeling of internal peace, depth, and warmth. Called “state of peace” in Autogenic Training, it secures a sensation of intense well-being, the body and mind relax, and the blocked energies start to flow again. Every day stress, which starts to be a burden on us, disappears. From this results a state of physical and mental well-being, which can last a few hours after the exercise.


Detailed research shows that our blood levels change when we compare them before and after the Autogenic Training session. It has been shown, for example, that our immune system is a lot more effective when the autogenic training has been applied, and that the acid-alkaline blood balance is better.


The simplicity of this method makes it accessible to everyone. The aim is to improve our own way of functioning, physically and psychologically, the two aspects being closely intertwined. 

Indications and effetcs

The autogenic training has a beneficial effect for the following problems and pathologies :

  • Hypertension and hypotension
  • Cardiovascular diseases. Prevention but also post-treatment for a heart attack for example
  • Breathing problems such as asthma and bronchitis
  • Allergies
  • Stomach and intestinal problems
  • Rheumatisms
  • Fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue
  • Whiplash and other traumas
  • Pre and Post surgery
  • Painful symptoms
  • Hypertension
  • Headaches, migraines
  • Insomnia, but also hypersomnia
  • Nervousness
  • Stress and tensions
  • Phobias

Autogenic Training has prevention as well as healing qualities.



What are the contraindications for Autogenic Training ?


For people who suffer from serious psychiatric pathologies, such as schizophrenia, severe depression, acute crises, ans other psychosis, as well as people who are suffering from a fever, autogenic training is not advised. 


Children must also be of a certain age to be able to take part (from the ages of 8 to 10).



The effects of Autogenic Training

We can notice that by using the autogenic training regularly the body accumulates less stress during the day.


The balance between the sympathetic nervous system (when our organism is alerted and our body and mind are put into action), and the parasympathetic nervous system (the slowing down of our body’s functions and recuperation) is rebuilt. This means that we have more energy at our disposal if needed and our body gets more rest during these intervals.


The autogenic training is progressively developed with this in mind. We learn systematically, step by step, how to be more profoundly relaxed. First of all we work with a feeling of heaviness, then warmth, then on the solar plexus, the heart beat, breathing, and finally with a sensation of freshness on our forehead.

The sensation of heaviness is accompanied by a muscular relaxation, the feeling of warmth is accompanied by a better blood flow.


Schultz advises to not force the state of relaxation because, just like sleep, we can end up with the contrary effect :

“whom tries to sleep, does not manage to”.

How do the sessions unfold ?

You have to be motivated and mustn't go against your will !


Autogenic Training can be given individually, but most of the time it takes place in small groups of 5 to 6 people. The advantage of a group session is that everyone can exchange on how they are feeling, sharing can be very stimulating. It is very important to insist on the fact that it is essential to practice at home. Once a week with the therapist is not enough, and in this case there is no point in signing up.


The total time for the autogenic training course is seven weeks, with one session per week. The key words for those seven sessions are: motivation, commitment and trust (someone who isn’t motivated often has a bad influence on the whole group). 

The sessions generally unfold like this :

Introduction, exchanging on the results of the exercises done at home, theory, exercises, sharing of the experiences felt during the new exercise, questions, conclusion.


Signing up to a 6 week course is a commitment. In the case that someone may want to leave mid-way through, there will be no refund. Except in the cases of an accident, illness, hospitalisation, etc…


It is essential to work on the autogenic training everyday, at home. At first, 2 to 5 minutes is enough. Then, little by little, we can go up to 15 minutes, as long as you are comfortable. If something becomes unpleasant and you become agitated, it is better to stop the exercise and start again later.


It is recommended to do the exercises 2 to 3 times a day. The best times to do them is early in the morning, after lunch or supper, and before going to bed. The surroundings must be peaceful so that your senses aren’t over stimulated. 


The exercises we do in Autogenic Training are very progressive and it is not possible to go from one exercise to another if the first isn’t completely mastered.

Each series’ of exercises finishes with a “recuperation” :

  • Folding your arms rapidly by bringing your elbows back towards you, and maybe also bending your knees and extending your legs.
  • Breath deeply
  • Open your eyes

This recuperation exercise is necessary to avoid feeling heavy and dizzy, which can be unpleasant for some people.


The sessions take place in a pleasant room, far away from any noise and from any distracting external elements.


Mattresses are available, as well as cushions to act as knee supports. Participants are asked to bring a cushion of their own, can also bring a blanket, and are asked to wear comfortable clothes.


For more information, please contact me by telephone or email (see the contacts page).

Joke Elfring

  • Psycho-énergéticienne et Hypnothérapeute
  • 06 70 19 36 49
  • Loc-Ornézan, locaux de la mairie, Village 32260 Ornézan, entrée: la porte à droite de la mairie et dans le grand sud du Gers