Touch in Psychotherapy

Resources & References

Overview & Ethical Guidelines


Schools, Techniques, Methodologies

Top of Page

References on the Use of Touch in Psychotherapy and Counseling


Abbey, A. & Melby, C. (1986). The effects of non-verbal cues on gender differences in perceptions of sexual intent. Sex Roles, 15, 283-298.

Ahmad, A., Lar sson, B., & Sundelin – Wahlsten, V. (2007). EMDR treatment for children with PTSD: Results of a randomized controlled trial. Nordic Journal of Psychiatry, 61 (5), 349-354.

Ainsfeld, E., (1990). Does infant carrying promote attachment? An experimental study of the effects of increased physical contact on the development of attachment. Child Development 61, 1617-27.

Ainsworth, M. (1978). Patterns of Attachment: A Psychological Study of the Strange Situation. Hillsdale, N.J.: Lawrence Erlbaum.

Allen, J.G. (1995). Coping with trauma. A guide to self-understanding. Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Press, Inc.

Alyn, J. H. (1998). The politics of touch in therapy: a response to Willison & Masson. Journal of Counseling & Development, 66, 432-433.

American Association for Marriage and Family Therapists. (2015). AAMFT Code of ethics. Retrieved from

American Psychological Association. (2010). Ethical principles of psychologists and code of conduct. APA Press, Washington DC.

Aponte, J. f., & Wohl, J. (2000). Psychological intervention and cultural diversity. Boston: Allyn & Bacon.

Aquino, A. T., & Lee, S. S. (2001). The use of non-erotic touch with children: Ethical and developmental considerations. Journal of Psychotherapy in Independent Practice, 1(3), 17-30.

Balint, M. (1968). The basic fault: Therapeutic aspects of regression. London: Tavistock.

Ball, A. (2002). Taboo or Not Taboo: Reflections on Physical touch in Psychoanalysis & Somatic Psychotherapy. Australia: Psychoz Publications.

Bar-Levav, R. (1993). A rationale for physical touching in psychotherapy. International Journal of Psychotherapy and Critical Thought, 1(1), 5-7.

Bar-Levav, R, (1998). A Rationale For Physical Touching In Psychotherapy. In Smith, Clance & Imes (Eds.), Touch in psychotherapy. New York: Guilford Press.

Bar-Levav, R. (1998). Thinking in the shadow of feelings: A new understanding of the hidden forces that shape individuals and societies. New York: Simon & Schuster.

Barnett, L. (2005). Keep in touch: The importance of touch in infant development. Infant Observation, 8 (2), 115–123.

Bateson, G. (1979). Mind in nature. New York: Dutton .

Bauer, B., (1977) Tactile-sensitive behavior in hyperactive and non-hyperactive children. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 31/6, 447-453.

Benjamin, B. and Sohnen-Moe, C. (2014). The Ethics of Touch: The Hands-on Practitioner’s Guide to Creating a Professional, Safe, and Enduring Practice. Sohnen-Moe Associates, inc.

Blatner, A. (2002). About Non-verbal Communications: General Considerations. Retrieved from

Bonitz, V. (2008). Use of physical touch in the “talking cure”: A journey to the outskirts of psychotherapy. Psychotherapy: Theory, Research, Practice, Training, 45/3, 391-404.

Bowlby, J. (1952). Maternal care and mental health: A report on behalf of the World Health Organization. Geneva, Switzerland: World Health Organization.

Bowlby, J. (1969) Attachment, Separation & Loss, Vol. 1, Attachment Books. New York: Basic Books.

Bremner, J. (2002). Does Stress Damage The Brain? New York; Norton.

Brodsky, A. M. (1985). Sex between therapists and patients: Ethical gray areas. Psychotherapy in Private practice, 3/1, 57-62.

Brody, V.A. (1978), “Developmental Play: A Relationship-Focused Program For Children”, Journal Of Child Welfare, 57/9, 591-599.

Caldwell, C. (1996) Getting Our Bodies Back: Recovery, Healing, and Transformation through Body-Centered Psychotherapy. Shambhala

Caldwell, C. (1997). Getting in Touch: The Guide To New Body-Centered Therapies: IL: Quest Books.

Chillot, R. (2013). The Power of Touch, Psychology Today, October. Retrieved from

Clance, P. R., & Petras, V. J. (1998). Therapists’ recall of their decision-making processes regarding the use of touch in ongoing psychotherapy: A preliminary study. In E. W. L. Smith, P. R. Clance, & S. Imes (Eds.), Touch in psychotherapy: Theory, research, and practice (pp. 92-108). New York: Guilford Press.

Clay, V.S., (1966). The effect of culture on mother-child tactile communication. Doctorate dissertation. Teachers college, Columbia University.

Cohen, S. S. (1987). The magic of touch. New York: Harper and Row.

Comas-Diaz, L., & Green, B. (Eds.). (1994). Women of color: Integrating ethnic and gender identities in psychotherapy. New York: Guilford Press.

Conger, J. (1994). The Body in Recovery: Somatic Psychotherapy and the Self.

Cornell, W. F. (1997). Touch and boundaries in Transactional Analysis: Ethical and transferential considerations. Transactional Analysis Journal, 37/1, 30-37.

Courtois, C. (1998). Healing The Incest Wound: Adult Survivors In Therapy. New York; Norton.

Cowen, E.L., Weissberg, R.P., Lotyczeuski, B. S. (1983). Physical contact in helping interactions with young children. Journal of consulting and Clinical Psychology, 51, 132-138.

Craig, J. D. (1991). Preventing dual relationships in pastoral counseling. Counseling and Values, 36, 49-55.

Davis, P. (1999). The Power of Touch. California: Hay House, Inc.

Dineen, T. (1996). Manufacturing victims: What the psychology industry is doing to people. Toronto: Robert Davies Publishing.

Downey, D.L. (2001). Therapeutic touch in psychotherapy. Psychotherapy, 36/1, 35-38.

Dunne, C., Bruggen, P., & O’brien, C. (1982) Touch and action in group therapy of younger adolescents, Journal of Adolescents, 5, 31-38.

Durana, C. (1998). The use of touch in psychotherapy: Ethical and clinical guidelines. Psychotherapy: Theory, Research, Practice, Training, 35/2, 269-280.

Edwards, D.J.A. (1984). The experience of interpersonal touch during a personal growth program: A factor analytic approach. Human Relations, 37/2, 769-780.

Eiden, B., (1998) The Use of touch in Psychotherapy. Self and Society 26/2, 3-8.

Eyckmans, S. (2009). Handle with care: Touch as a therapeutic tool. Gestalt Journal of Australia and New Zealand, 6, 40–53.

Fagan, J. (1998) Thoughts on using touch in psychotherapy. In E. W. Smith, P. R. Clance, & S. Imes; Touch in psychotherapy. New York: Guilford Press.

Fawns, G. (n.d.). The ethics of touch in contemporary Psychotherapy. 1st ed. [ebook] Available at:

Field, T. (2014), Touch 2nd edition. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Field, T. (2005). Touch deprivation and aggression against self among adolescents. In D. M. Stoff & E. J. Susman (Eds.). Developmental psychobiology of aggression (pp. 117 – 140). New York: Cambridge University Press.

Field, T. (1998) Massage Therapy Effects. American Psychologist, 53/12, 1270-1281.

Field, T. (1995), Infant Massage Therapy, In Field T. (Ed.), Touch In Early Development, Mahawah, NJ.

Field, T., Grizzle, N., Scafidi, F., Abrams, S., & Richardson, S. (1996). Massage therapy for infants of depressed mothers. Infant Behavior and Development, 19, 109-114.

Field, T., Hernandez-Reif, M., Hart, S., Quintino, O., Drose, L., Field, T., Kuhn, C., & Schanberg, S (1997). Sexual abuse effects are lessened by massage therapy, Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies, 1, 65-6.

Field, T., Lasko, D, Mundy, P., Henteleff, T., Talpins, S., & Dowling, M. (1997). Autistic children’s attentiveness and responsively improve after touch therapy. Journal of Autism & Developmental Disorders, 27, 333-338.

Field, T., Morrow, C., Valdeon, C., Larson, S., Kuhn, C., & Schanberg, S. (1992). Massage therapy reduces anxiety in child and adolescent psychiatric patients. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 31, 125-130.

Field, T., Seligman, S., Scafidi, F., & Schanberg, S. (1996). Alleviating posttraumatic stress in children following Hurricane Andrew. Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology, 17, 37-50.

Field, T., Shanberg, S., Kuhn, C., Fierro, K., Henteleff, T., Mueller, C., Yando, R. & Burman, I. (1997). Bulimic adolescents benefit from massage therapy. Adolescence, 131, 555-563.

Fosshage, J.L., (2000). The Meanings of Touch in Psychoanalysis: A Time for Reassessment. Psychoanalytic Inquiry, 20/1,. Retrieved from:

Frank, J. D. (1970). Persuasion and Healing. New York: Schocken Books.

Frank, L. (1957). Tactile communication. General Psychological Monographs, 56, 209-255.

Fridlund, A. (1994). Human Facial Expression: An Evolutionary View. San Diego, CA: Academic Press.

Fuller, K. D. (2006). Training Students on the Ethics of Touch in Psychotherapy. Newsletter of Association of Directors of Psychology Training Clinics, 8/2.

Geib, P. (1982). The experience of nonerotic physical contact in traditional psychotherapy. In E. W. L. Smith, P. R. Clance & S. Imes (Eds.) Touch in psychotherapy (pp. 109-126). New York, NY: The Gillford Press.

Geib, P. (1998). The experience of nonerotic physical contact in traditional psychotherapy. In E. W. Smith, P. R. Clance, & S. Imes (Eds.), Touch in psychotherapy: Theory, research, and practice (pp. 109–126). New York, NY: Guilford Press.

Gendlin, E. T, (1982) Focusing, 2nd Edition. Bantam Books.

Giannone, Z. (2015). The Magic Touch: A literature review of non-erotic touch in psychotherapy. Health Professional Student Journal, [online] 2(1), pp.27-31.

Givens, D. G. (2004). Center for Non-verbal Studies. Retrieved from

Glickauf-Hughes, C. & Clance, P. R. (1998). An individualized and interactive object relations perspective on the use of touch in psychotherapy. In W. L. Smith, P. R. Clance & Imes (Eds), Touch in psychotherapy (pp. 153-169). New York, NY: The Gillford Press.

Goodman, M., & Teicher, A. (1988). To touch or not to touch. Psychotherapy: Theory, Research, Practice, Training, 25, 492–500. doi:10.1037/h0085374

Gottlieb, M. C. (1993). Avoiding exploitative dual relationships: A decision-making model. Psychotherapy, 30, 41-48.

Greene, B. (Ed.). (1997). Psychological perspectives on lesbian and gay issues: Vol. 3. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Greenspan, M. (1995). Out of bounds. Common Boundary Magazine, July/August, 51-56.

Gurman, A. (1970). The patient’s perception of the therapeutic relationship. In A. Gurman & A. Razin (Eds.), Effective psychotherapy: A handbook of research (pp. 503-543). Elmsford, NY: Pergamon Press.

Halbrook, B., & Duplechin, R. (1994). Rethinking touch in psychotherapy: Guidelines for practitioners. Osychotherapy in Private Practice, 13/3, 43-53.

Hall, J. (1984). Non-verbal sex differences: Communication accuracy and expressive style. Johns Hopkins University Press.

Harlow, H. (1971). Learning to love. New York: Albion.

Harlow, H. (1958). The Nature of Love. American Psychologist, 13, 673-685.

Harrison, C., Jones, R. S. P., & Huws, J. C. (2012). “We’re people who don’t touch” Exploring clinical psychologists’ perspectives on their use of touch in therapy. Counselling Psychology Quarterly. doi:10.1080/09515070.2012.671595

Hartley, D., & Strupp, H. (1983). The therapeutic alliance: Its relationship to outcome in brief psychotherapy. In j. Masling (Ed.), Empirical studies of psychoanalytic theories (Vol. 1, pp. 1-37). Hillside, NJ: Erlbaum.

Helfer, R. E. (1978) Childhood comes first: A crash course in childhood for adults. East Lansing MI.

Heller, S. (1997). The Vital Touch. New York: Henry Holt and Company.

Heller, S. (1999). Touch Taboos. Mothering, Sept, 96:44 et seq.

Herlihy, B., & Corey, G. (1992). Dual relationships in counseling. Alexandria, VA: American Association for Counseling and Development.

Hernandez-Reif, M., Field, T., Krasnegor, J., Theakston, H., Hossain, Z., & Burman, I. (2000). High blood pressure and associated symptoms were reduced by massage therapy. Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies, 4, 31-38.

Hetherington, A. (1998). The use and abuse of touch in therapy and counselling. Counselling Psychology Quarterly, 11, 361–364. doi:10.1080/09515079808254067

Hilton, R. (1997). Touching in therapy. In L. E. Hedges, R. Hilton, V. W. Hilton, O. B. Caudill, Jr. Therapists at risk: Perils of the intimacy of the therapeutic relationships. New Jersey: Jason Aronson, Inc.

Hollender, M.H. & Mercer, A.J. (1976) Wish to be held and wish to hold in men and women. Archives of General Psychiatry, 33, 49-51.

Hollinger, L. (1986). Communicating with the elderly. Journal of Gerentological Nursing, 12/3, 8-13.

Holroyd, J. C., & Brodsky, A. M. (1977). Psychologists’ attitudes and practices regarding erotic and nonerotic physical contact with patients. American Psychologist, 32, 843-849.

Holroyd, J. C., & Brodsky, A. M. (1980). Does touching patients lead to sexual intercourse? Professional Psychology, 11, 807-811.

Holub E., Lee S. (1990). Therapists’ Use of Nonerotic Physical Contact Ethical Concerns. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 21/2, 115-117.

Horton, J., Clance P.R., Sterk-Elifson C., Emshoff J., (1995) Touch In Psychotherapy: A Survey of Patients’ Experiences. Psychotherapy, 32, 443-457.

Hovdestad, W.E. & Kristiansen, C.M. (1996). Mind meets body: on the nature of recovered memories of trauma. Women & Therapy, 19/1, 118-125. Retrieved from

Hunter, M., & Struve, J. (1998). The Ethical Use Of Touch In Psychotherapy. Thousand Oaks, CA Sage Publications.

International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies. (1998). Childhood trauma remembered: A report on the current scientific knowledge base and its applications. Northbrook, IL: Author.

Ironson, G., Field, T., Scafidi, F., Hashimoto, M., Kumar, M., Kumar, A., Price, A., Goncalves, A., Burman, I., Tetenman, C., Patarca, R., & Fletcher, M. A. (1996). Massage therapy is associated with enhancement of the immune system’s cytotoxic capacity. International Journal of Neuroscience, 84, 205-218.

Jain, S., McMahon, G. F., Hasen, P., Kozub, M. P., Porter, V., King, R., & Guarneri, E. M. (2012). Healing touch with guided imagery for PTSD in returning active duty military: A randomized controlled trial. Military Medicine, 177(9); 1015-1021.

Jean A. D. L., Stack D. M. & Arnold S. (2014). Investigating Maternal Touch and Infants’ Self-Regulatory Behaviours during a Modified Face-to-Face Still-Face with Touch Procedure. Infant and Child Development, 23, 557–574.

Johnson, D. (1983). Body. Boston: Beacon Press.

Johnson, D. (2018). Diverse bodies, diverse practices: Toward an inclusive somatics. Berkeley, CA: North Atlantic Books.

Johnson, D., & Grand, I. J. (Eds.) (1998). The body in psychotherapy: Inquiries in somatic psychology. Berkeley, CA, North Atlantic Books.

Jones, S. E. (1994). The right touch: Understanding and using the language of physical contact. Cresskill, NJ: Hampton Press.

Joshi, P., Almeida, M. and Shete, P. (2010). Attitudes towards Physical Contact in a Therapeutic Setting: Role of Gender and Expertise. Indian Academy of Applied Psychology, [online] 36(1), pp.35-43.

Jourard, S.M. (1966). An exploratory study of body accessibility. British Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 5, 221-231.

Kagle, J. D., & Geilbelhausen, P. N. (1994). Dual relationships and professional boundaries. Social Work, 39/2, 213-220.

Katsurada, E. (2012). The relationship between parental physical affection and child physical aggression among Japanese preschoolers. Child Studies in Diverse Contexts, 2(1), 1-10.

Keleman, Stanley. (1981). Your body speaks its mind. Berkeley, CA: Center Press.

Keleman, Stanley. (1987). Embodying Experience: forming a Personal Life. Berkeley, Calif.; Center Press.

Kertay, L., & Reviere, S. L. (1993). The use of touch in psychotherapy: Theoretical and ethical considerations. Psychotherapy: Theory, Research, Practice, Training, 30, 32–40. doi:10.1037/0033- 3204.30.1.32

Kertay, L., & Reviere, S. L. (1998). Touch in context. In E. W. Smith, P. R. Clance, & S. Imes (Eds.), Touch in psychotherapy: Theory, research, and practice (pp. 16–35). New York, NY: Guilford Press.

Klaus, M. (2009). Commentary: An early, short, and useful sensitive period in the human infant. Birth: Issues in Perinatal Care, 36 (2), 110 – 112.

Klaus, M., Kennel, J., (1976). Maternal-Infant Bonding. St. Louis: C.V. Mosby Co.

Knapp, M. L. & Hall, J. A. (5th Ed.) (2001); Non-verbal Communication in Human Interaction. New York: Wadsworth Publishing.

Kurtz, R., (1990). Body-Centered Psychotherapy: The Hakomi Method. Mendocino, CA.: Life Rythm.

Lakin, M. (1991). Coping with ethical dilemmas in psychotherapy. New York: Pergamon Press.

Lamb, M. E., Thompson, W., Gardner & Charnov, E. L. (1985). Infant-Mother Attachment: The Origins and Developmental Significance of Individual Differences in Strange Situation Behavior. Hillside, N.J.: Lawrence Erlbaum.

Lambert, M. J. (1991). Introduction to psychotherapy research. In L. E. Beutler & M. Cargo (Eds.), Psychotherapy research: An international review of programmatic studies (pp. 1-11). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Lambert, M. J. (1992). Implications of outcome research for psychotherapy integration. In J.C. Norcross & M. R. Goldfried (Eds.), Handbook of psychotherapy integration (pp. 94-129). New York: Basic Books.

Langs, R. (1976). The therapeutic relationship and deviations in technique. In R. J. Langs (Ed.), International journal of psychoanalytic psychotherapy: Vol. 4 (pp. 106-141). New York: Jason Aronson.

Langs, R. (1988). A primer of psychotherapy. New York: Gardner Press.

LaPierre, A. (2012). Healing touch: Honoring the somatic dimensions of the psyche. Available from

Lawry, S., (1998). Touch and clients who have been sexually abused. In Hunter & Struve (Eds,), The Ethical Use of Touch in Psychotherapy. New York: Guilford Press.

Lazarus, A. A. (1994). How certain boundaries and ethics diminish therapeutic effectiveness. Ethics and Behavior, 4, 255-261.

Lazarus, A. A. and Zur, O. (Eds.) (2002). Dual relationships and psychotherapy. New York: Springer.

Lepner, J. (2001).  Touch in Gestalt Body Process Psychotherapy: Purpose, Practice, and Ethics.  Gestalt Review, 5/2, 97-114.

Levine, P. and Frederick, A. (1997). Waking the Tiger: Healing Trauma : The Innate Capacity to Transform Overwhelming Experiences. Berkeley, CA: North Atlantic Books.

Levitan, A., & Johnson, J. (1986). The role of touch in healing and hypnotherapy. American Journal of clinical Hypnosis, 28/4, 218-223.

Little, M., (1990). Psychotic Anxieties and Containment: A Personal Record of an Analysis with Winnicott. Jason Aronson: New Jersey.

Lowen, A. (1958). Physical Dynamics of character structure. New York: Greenwood.

Lowen, A. (1976). Bioenergetics. New York: Penquin.

Malik, A. Touch: Its Crucial Role in the Emotional & Physical Health of Americans. Retrieved from

McNeely, D. A. (1987). Touching: Body therapy and depth psychology. Toronto, Canada: Inner City Books.

Milakovitch, J. C. (1993). Touching in psychotherapy: The differences between therapists who touch and those who do not. Dissertation Abstracts International, 54/6-B, 3347.

Marziali, E. (1984). Three viewpoints on the therapeutic alliance: similarities, difference, and associations with psychotherapy outcome. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 172, 417-423.

McGuirk, J. (2012). The place of touch in Counselling and Psychotherapy and the potential for healing within the therapeutic relationship. Inside Out. Retrieved from

McLaughlin, J.T. (1995) ‘Touching Limits in the Psychoanalytic Dyad.’ Psychoanalytic Quarterly, LXIV, 443-465.

McNeely, D. A. (1987). Touching: body therapy and depth psychology. Toronto, Ontario, Canada: Inner City Books.

Mead, M., (1955) Cited in D.M. Schneider and G. C, Homans, “Kinship terminology and the American kinship system,” American Anthropologist 57, 1206.

Mead, M., (1967) Male and female. New York: William Morrow, 83-84.

Mehrabian, A. (1971). The silent language: Implicit communication of emotions and attitudes. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.

Menehan, K. The Perinatal Bonding Project: Infant Message to Reduce Child Abuse. Massage Magazine. Spokane, WA.

Menninger, K. (1958). Theory of psychoanalytic technique. New York: Basic Books.

Menninger, K. (1961). Theory of psychoanalytic technique. New York: Science Editions.

Miller, L. A. (1997). An explanation of therapeutic touch using the science of unitary man. Nursing Forum, 18/3, 278-287.

Mindell, Arnold. (1983). Dreambody: The Body’s Role in Revealing the Self. Boston: Routledge and Kegan Paul.

Mintz, N. L. (1971). Patient fees and psychotherapeutic transactions. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 36, 1-8.

Mitchell, G. (1979) Behavioral sex differences in nonhuman primates. Van Nostrand Reinhold.

Montagu, A. (1971). Touching; The Human Significance of the Skin. New York: Columbia University Press.

Montagu, A. (1986). Touching; The Human Significance of the Skin. 3rd Ed. New York: Harper & Row.

Moszkowski, R. J., Stack, D. M., Girouard, N., Field, T. M., Hernandez – Reif, M., & Diego, M. (2009). Touching behaviors of infants of depressed mothers during normal and perturbed interactions. Infant Behavior & Development, 32 (2), 183 – 194.

Murray, R.M., Pugh, J.L. & Clance, P.R. (2004). The ethics of touch and imagery in psychotherapy: a gestalt resolution. In: The Values of Connection, R.G. Lee (Ed.), Cambridge, MA: The Gestalt Press

National Association of Social Workers. (2017). Code of ethics.Retrieved from

Neale, S. (2018). When Is it Okay To Hug Your Therapist?  PsychCentral, July

O’Brien, M., & Lynch, H. (2011). Exploring the role of touch in the first year of life: Mothers’ perspectives of tactile interactions with their infants. British Journal of Occupational Therapy, 74 (3), 129 – 136.

Ogden, P. (1997). Hakomi integrated somatics: Hands-on psychotherapy. In C. Caldwell (Ed.), Getting in touch: The guide to new body-centered therapies, (pp. 153-178). Wheaton, IL: Quest Books.

Older, J. (1982). Touching is healing. New York: Stein & Day.

Pederson, P.B., Draguns, J.G., Lonner, W.J., Trimble, J.E. (Eds.). (1996) Counseling across cultures (4th ed.). Thousand Oakes, CA: Sage.

Perls, F. (1973). The Gestalt Approach and Eye Witness to Therapy. Palo Alto: Science and Behavior Books.

Pert, C., (1997). Molecules of Emotion, New York: Scribner.

Peterson, M. B. (2001). Recognizing concerns about how some licensing boards are treating psychologists. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 32/4, 339-340.

Phelan, J. E. (2009). Exploring the use of touch in the psychotherapeutic setting: A phenomenological review. Psychotherapy: Theory, Research, Practice, Training, 46/1, 97-111.

Piazza, N., Laux, J. & Calmesm S. (2013). The Use of Touch in Counseling: An Ethical Decision-Making Model. Counseling and Values, 58 59-68.  DOI: 10.1002/j.2161-007X.2013.00025.x.

Pinson, B. (2002). Touch in therapy: An effort to make the unknown known. Journal of Contemporary Psychotherapy, 32, 179–196. doi:10.1023/A:1020545010081

Prescott, J.W., (1975). Body pleasure and the origins of violence. The Futurist, April, 64-67.

Prescott T. J., Diamond M. E., & Wing A. M. (2011). Active touch sensing. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences, 366 (1581): 2989 – 2995.

Redleaf, A., (1998). Behind Closed Doors: Gender, Sexuality, and Touch in the Doctor/Patient Relationship. Westport, CT: Auburn House.

Reich, W. (1972). Character analysis. New York; Simon & Schuster.

Rogers, C., (1970). Carl Rogers on encounter groups. New York: Harper & Row.

Rothschild, B. (2000). The body remembers: The psychophysiology of trauma and trauma treatment. New York, NY: W. W Norton & Co.

Rovers, M, Malette, J. & and Guirguis-Younger, M. (2017). Touch in the Helping Professions: Research, Practice and Ethics. University of Ottawa Press.

Rubenfeld, I. (2000) The Listening Hands, New York: Bantam.

Saint Arnault, D. (2015). Biodynamic Psychotherapy for Trauma Recovery: A Pilot Study. International Body Psychotherapy Journal: The Art and Science of Somatic Praxis. Retrieved from

Salvio, M., Beutler, L., Wood, J., & Engle, D. (1992). The strength of the therapeutic alliance in three treatments for depression. Psychotherapy Research, 2/1, 31-36.

Samovar, L., Porter, R., & Jain, N. (1981). Understanding intercultural communication. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.

Satir, V., (1972). Peoplemaking. Palo Alto, CA: Science and Behavior Books.

Scheflen, A. E. (1972). Body language and the social order. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.

Schultz, LeRoy G. (1975). A survey of social workers’ attitudes and use of body and sex psychotherapies. Clinical Social Work Journal, 3(2) 90-99.

Siegel, D. J. (2010). Mindsight: The new science of personal transformation. New York: Bantam Books.

Slater, Victoria, (1995). Toward an understanding of energetic healing – Journal of Holistic Nursing, 13/3, 209-238.

Smith, D. and Fitzpatrick, M. (1995). Patient-therapist boundary issues: An integrative review of theory and research. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 26(5), pp.499-506.

Smith, E., Clance, P .R. & Imes, S. (Eds.) (1998), Touch in Psychotherapy: Theory, Research and Practice, New York: Guilford Press.

Steele, K., & Colrain, J. (1990). Abreactive work with sexual abuse survivors; Concepts an techniques. In M. Hunter (Ed,) The sexually abused male: Volume II (pp. 1-55). Lexington, MA: Lexington Books.

Stenzel, C. L. & Rupert, P. A. (2004). Psychologists’ use of touch in individual psychotherapy. Psychotherapy: Theory, Research, Practice, Training, 41, 332-345.

St. Germaine, J. (1996). Dual relationships and certified alcohol and drug counselors: A national study of ethical beliefs and behaviors. Alcoholism Treatment Quarterly, 14/2, 29-45.

Stockwell, S. R., & Dye, A. (1980). Effects of counselor touch on counseling outcome. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 27, 443–446. doi:10.1037/0022-0167.27.5.443

Sue, D.W., Ivey, A.E., & Pedersen, P.B. (1996). A theory of multicultural counseling and therapy. New York: Brooks/Cole Publishing Company.

Strasburger, L. H., Jorgenson, L., & Sutherland, P. (1992). The prevention of psychotherapist sexual misconduct: Avoiding the slippery slope. American Journal of Psychotherapy, 46/4, 544-555.

Swade, T., Bayne, R., & Horton, I. (2006). Touch me never? Therapy Today, 17, 41–42. Van Hoose, W. H. (1986). Ethical principles in counseling. Journal of Counseling and Development, 65, 168–169.

Thayer, S. (1982). In W. Schiff & E. Foulke (Eds.) Tactile perception: a source book. New York: Cambridge University Press

Tirnauer, L., Smith, E., & Foster, P. (1996). The American Academy of Psychotherapists Research Committee Survey of members. Voices, 32/2, 87-94.

Tomm, K. (1993). The ethics of dual relationships. The California Therapist, January/February, 7-9.

United States Association For Body Psychotherapy. (2003). Description of Body Psychotherapy. Retrieved from

United States Association for Body Psychotherapy. (2007). Ethics Guidelines. Bethesda, MD:Author. Retreived from

Van der Kolk, B.A., McFarlane, A.C., & Weisaeth, L. (1996). Traumatic stress. The effects of overwhelming experience on mind, body, and society. New York, NY: The Guilford Press.

Waddell, M. (2010). Therapists’ attachment style and the use of touch in the therapeutic relationship: a project upon an independent investigation. Masters. Smith College.

Walker, L. E. A. (1994). Abused women and survivor therapy: A practical guide for psychotherapists. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Walsh, J. (2017)., The appropriateness of physical contact with clients who have schizophrenia, Social Work in Mental Health, 16/1, 34-45.

Warnecke, T. (2011). Stirring the depths: transference, countertransference and touch. Body, Movement and Dance in Psychotherapy, 6 (3), 233-243.

Watson J. B. (1924). The Psychological Care of The Infant. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Westland, G. (2011). Physical touch in psychotherapy: Why are we not touching more? Body, Movement and Dance in Psychotherapy, 6(1), 17–29.

Westland, G. (2015). Verbal and Non – Verbal Communication in Psychotherapy. New York, NY: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.

Whitcher, S.J., & Fisher, J.D. (1979). Multidimensional reaction to therapeutic touch in hospital setting. Journal of Personality and social Psychology, 37, 87-96.

White, K. (2002). A study of Ethical and Clinical Implications for the Appropriate use of touch in Psychotherapy. USA Body Psychotherapy Journal, [online] 1(1), pp.1-8. Available at:

Whitfield, C. L. (1993). Boundaries and relationships. Deerfield Beach, FL: Health Communications.

Wilison, B.G., & Masson, R.L. (1986, April). The role of touch in psychotherapy: An adjunct to communication. Journal of counseling and Development, 64, 497-500.

Williams, M. H. (1997). Boundary violations: Do some contended standards of care fail to encompass commonplace procedures of Humanistic, Behavioral, and Eclectic Psychotherapies? Psychotherapy, 34/3, 238-249.

Wilson, J.M. (1982, January). The value of touch in psychotherapy. American journal of Orthopsychiatry, 52/1, 65-72.

Winnicott, D.W. (1975; 1958) Through Pediatrics to psychoanalysis: Collected Papers. Karnac London.

Wolberg, L. (1967). The Technique of psychotherapy (2nd ed.). New York: Grune & Stratton.

Wolfgang, M.E. (1969). Violence and human behavior, In Proceedings of the Annual Conference of the American Psychological Association, Washington. D.C., August.

Young, C. (2005). About the ethics of professional touch. Retrieved from

Young, C. (2007). The Power of touch in Psychotherapy. 1st ed. [ebook] Edinburgh, pp.1-6. Available at:

Young, C. (2008). The history and development of Body-Psychotherapy: The American legacy of Reich. Body, Movement and Dance in Psychotherapy, 3(1), 5-18.

Young, C. (2011). The history and development of Body Psychotherapy: European collaboration. Body, Movement and Dance in Psychotherapy, 6(1), 57-68.

Young, C., and Westland, G. (2014). Shadows in the History of Body Psychotherapy: Part I. International Body Psychotherapy Journal: The Art and Science of Somatic Praxis. Retrieved from

Zur, O. (2005). Dumbing down of psychology: Manufactured consent about the depravity of dual relationships in therapy. In R. H. Wright & N. A. Cummings, (Eds.) (2005). Destructive trends in mental health: The well-intentioned road to harm. New York, NY: Brunner-Routledge. PP. 253-282.

Zur, O. (2007a). Touch in Therapy. In O. Zur. Boundaries in Psychotherapy: Ethical and Clinical Explorations (pp. 167-185). Washington, DC: APA Books.

Zur, O. (2007b). Touch In Therapy and The Standard of Care in Psychotherapy and Counseling: Bringing Clarity to Illusive Relationships. U.S. Association of Body Psychotherapy Journal, 6/2, 61-93.

Zur, O. (2009). Re-Thinking the “Power Differential” in Psychotherapy: Exploring the myth of therapists’ omnipotence and patients’ fragility. Voice: The Art and Science of Psychotherapy, 45/1.

Zur, O. (2015). Ethical and Legal Aspects of Touch in Psychotherapy. Retrieved from

Zur, O. & Nola Nordmarken, MFT (2004). To Touch Or Not To Touch: Rethinking The Prohibition On Touch In Psychotherapy And Counseling, Clinical, Ethical & Legal Considerations. Retrieved from

Top of Page

Sign up for topical updates and invitations to participate with Dr. Zur