Sexological Bodywork goes mainstream

Article By: Michael Dresser

As one of the few gay Certified Sexological Bodywork practitioners in the UK, I’ve been excited by a growing awareness of it (including Gwyneth’s recent Netflix series). Find out more about it, and how it can benefit you.

2021 was quite a year for the visibility of Sexological Bodywork worldwide!

As one of the few gay Certified Sexological Bodywork practitioners in the UK, I’ve been excited to see a growing awareness and understanding of the benefits of working with sex and intimacy in this hands-on way.

On Netflix two programmes have featured some of my fellow practitioners as experts key to the programme content:

In Gwyneth Paltrow’s Sex, Love & Goop several couples journey towards more pleasurable sex and deeper intimacy with the hands-on help of a team of experts, including two Sexological Bodyworkers.

In Sex: Unzipped my friend and colleague Stella Sonnenbaum joins a celebration of sexual health and positivity with a team of expert educators, candid stand-ups, and uninhibited puppets!

And on Channel 4 my colleague Jem Ayers features in Sex Actually – an exploration of what sex means to people across the UK today, presented by Alice Levine, and produced by Louis Theroux.

What are the benefits of Sexological Bodywork for gay men?

The gay male identity is sometimes seen as synonymous with sex. But trauma and consent issues also frequently play a significant part in the experience of being gay.

This combination can lead many gay men to disconnect from their body – whether that happens through identity shame, chemsex, or even shutting down a part of themselves in order to survive.

Many alternative practitioners working with what is often called ‘conscious sexuality’ are passionate and well-meaning, but lacking in significant understanding or training around trauma, consent, and clear professional boundaries.

In addition, many sex coaches (both mainstream, and alternative) don’t have an informed awareness of the very specific lived experience involved in gay sex and relationship dynamics.

Sexological Bodyworkers, on the other hand, have a professional certification process, and a code of ethics, which places choice, safety and inclusivity – both physical and emotional – at the heart of how we are trained, and how we work.

Although Sexological Bodywork is just one part of my work, I’ve experienced (as a professional) the incredible value it brings to helping keep this potentially vulnerable work as safe as possible – for both me and my clients.  As a gay man I appreciate the inclusivity this way of working offers to so many men who are longing to come into connection with the whole of who they are for the first time – in whatever way is best, and safest, for them.

I’m excited to see more awareness being brought to this incredible field of work.

Find out more about how I include Sexological Bodywork in my sessions for gay men in the UK