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How to Find the Right Coach or Bodyworker: 17 Essential Tips for Making the Best Choice for YOU!

Updated: Apr 4

Embarking on a journey of self-discovery and healing through the support of an Embodied Sex, Intimacy & Breathwork Coach or Certified Sexological Bodyworker, can be a transformative experience. Whether you seek to process emotions, address trauma, explore sensuality and sexuality, or develop deeper connections, finding the right practitioner is crucial.

Why did I write this?

This selection of tips came about when my partner wanted to explore his sexual trauma in an embodied way. He would send me websites of practitioners to get my opinion, and oh did I have opinions! Some of the bodyworkers were making grandiose claims with few credentials, while others were just relying on their good looks, and most were not trauma informed. As a loving partner I wanted him to have the best chance of healing and so I wrote a list of things he could look for when choosing a bodyworker. Being open and flexible to exploring what feels right is important, you don’t need to have all the answers just yet, simply getting curious will help…

Hands writing in a journal, with a cup of iced coffee in the foreground
Get curious.
  1. Understand Your Goals and Intentions

Before diving into the process of finding the right coach or Certified Sexological Bodyworker, it is essential to get curious with your intentions. Consider your ultimate goals without attachment and the curiosity or desires you wish to explore. Are you seeking emotional processing, healing childhood or attachment trauma, unraveling religious or societal conditioning, wanting to experience more pleasure, learning about and meeting sensual, sexual or platonic touch needs, or reconnect with yourself and your partner? Determining the nature of your desires and needs will guide you towards a more fulfilling experience.

Tip: Spend some time journaling your goals and intentions and get honest with your desires!

A woman looking inquisitively at her laptop.
Do your research.

2. Do you want regular or One-Off Sessions?

Get curious about whether you want a series of sessions, or just a one-off experience. Regular sessions can offer long-term support, healing, and growth, to help you re-wire neural pathways and make lasting change, while one-off sessions might serve as a valuable exploration, an opening, or to meet an immediate need. Understanding the duration and frequency of the sessions will assist you in selecting a suitable practitioner. 

3. Evaluating Practitioner Websites

When searching for an Embodied Sex, Intimacy & Breathwork Coach or Sexological Bodyworker, their website can provide valuable insights into their values and approaches.

Here are 13 more elements to consider when choosing a coach or bodyworker.

4. Lineage and Training Look for information about the practitioner's background, lineage, and the trainings they have undergone. This gives you an idea of their areas or interest and expertise.

5. Trauma-Informed Approach Determine if the practitioner mentions being trauma-informed. This indicates their understanding of trauma and their commitment to creating a space for clients to foster a sense of safety for themselves. See my blog post "What is a safe space?" to explore more.

6. Emphasis on Consent Assess how the practitioner addresses consent. A reliable practitioner will emphasize consent throughout the session, ensuring your autonomy and comfort.

Look for clear explanations of their approach to consent. Ask them about it.

7. Sharing Their Story Some practitioners share aspects of their own life experiences and how that has impacted their work today. Notice how your body responds to their story. Does it resonate? Do you feel a connection? While shared experiences can enhance empathy, remember that a lack of similar experiences doesn't necessarily mean they can't support you effectively.

8. Informed Decision-Making Evaluate how the practitioner supports you in making an informed decision. Look for options like a Disconnected to Deeply Loving Strategy Call to establish mutual compatibility and ensure both parties are in choice and a good fit to work together. Consent should always be prioritized. Try and be as present as possible in the call and notice how you feel in the presence of the coach.

9. Onboarding Process and Policies Consider the practitioner's onboarding process, Ethics & Personal Boundaries Statements, Policies; including cancellation policies. Transparent communication about expectations and boundaries is essential.

10. Session work As Embodied Sex, Intimacy, Breathwork Coaching & Sexological Bodywork is a client led modality, meaning the client comes with their own intentions to sessions, rather than the practitioner working with an agenda. Do you understand what a session might look like? Do you understand what the practitioner's boundaries are? Do you co-create the sessions together?

11. Support & Integration I often tell clients that the hard work usually begins at the end of our work together! Investigate what type of support you can expect to receive between sessions and after your series has completed. Ask for what you think you might want, make adjustments.

12. Professional Network and Resources Look for practitioners who have links to other professionals' websites or mention having a healthy support system in place. This indicates their commitment to continuous learning and holistic support.

13. Accountability Sometimes mistakes, misunderstandings and difficulties can occur in the client-practitioner relationship. Determine if the practitioner mentions a process for bringing up challenges that may occur in sessions? Do they work with a supervisor? Do they have an accountability pod? Do they have an external grievance process?

14. Continuing Professional Development Is the practitioner keeping up to date with their education and expanding their knowledge and experience?

15. Ethical Framework and Registrations Determine if the practitioner follows an ethical framework and is registered with any governing bodies. This can demonstrate professionalism and accountability.

16. Testimonials Consider the testimonials on the practitioner's website. While not the sole basis for your decision, they can provide insights into others' experiences and their satisfaction with the practitioner's services.

An older woman laying face down on a massage table
Remember who this work is for.

17. Remember, It's all about YOU.

Owning your desires for living an authentic, connected and pleasure filled life and receiving touch, can be a courageous step towards self-discovery, healing and transformation. It is crucial to find a practitioner who is well-versed in supporting you during and after sessions. It is common for memories, trauma, emotions, and realizations to surface doing this work, making it vital to have an informed and experienced practitioner who can work through these challenges with both your mind and body. And someone who knows their capacity and when to ask for extra support. Consider if you are an external processor or feeler, you may benefit from a practitioner who can offer both verbal and body-based approaches.

By getting clear on what it is you are looking for, considering the suggestions provided, asking your potential practitioner questions and following your intuition, you can find the right coach or bodyworker who aligns with your needs, desires, and values, and co-create a transformative and empowering journey of healing and self-discovery.

Emerald May,Sex Coach for Couples and Women, In Portland, Oregon & Online

During this 45 minute call you will have the opportunity to feel heard, receive at least 3 strategies to support you on your journey, and an optional follow up email summarizing what we discussed. 

There is no hard sell, it is an opportunity to practice receiving, and to see if we are a good fit to work together.


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