What is Sand Tray Therapy and How Does it Work?

Sand tray, or sandplay as it is also called, is an expresisve therapy technique where the client chooses from hundreds of figurines. Through a non-directed placement of the figurines, the completed tray can help the client become more aware of the thoughts, feelings, or emotions they struggle with, want to express, or may not yet be aware of.  What clients enjoy about sand tray therapy is that there is no right or wrong way to place the objects or in what is created. The creation is for the client, and not the therapist. 

 

Is sand tray only for children?

Adolescents particularly seem to be drawn to sand tray therapy as it requires very little talking in the creative process and allows them to engage in the natural practice of play. For adults, sandplay offers a realm healing that is free of judgement, interpretation, and intrusion. The clinician is there to witness and observe with you, not decide what the tray is about. That will come forth for each client. 

 

Will there be a rhyme or reason to what is created?

The client and therapist will discuss each tray together as much as it feels comfortable, and then each client has the opportunity to take a picture of their tray to document their process for that particular day. Lauren will also document the tray for the client's file so that she and the client may look back and review how the various trays have shifted over time. 

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