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Becoming Certified

Want to embody Hakomi confidently? Ready to enjoy the satisfaction of completing a rigorous and

Transformative Learning Process?

We Invite You to Start Your Certification Journey.

Certification entitles you to call yourself a “Certified Hakomi Therapist” if you are a psychotherapist or a “Certified Hakomi Practitioner” if you are not a psychotherapist. You may also use the Hakomi logo and list your services in the Hakomi Institute Practitioner Directory as part of a paid annual membership.

Blue Quotation Marks

I cannot recommend this training highly enough.

“I have gained tools to help my clients rapidly access and transform their pain and struggle, and found it profoundly effective across a wide range of individuals with a variety of long-term and challenging clinical and life problems.”
Jeffrey Rutstein
Psy.D., Clinical Psychologist, New Jersey

The Certification Journey

To become certified, you must demonstrate competence in the Hakomi Method. You can do this by showing your work to two trainers during a live certification training or submitting recorded sessions to two trainers for review, or a combination of these options. 

The timing of certification differs from person to person. Occasionally, students are ready to be certified when they complete the training. More often, the process takes 2-4 years to complete. We recommend at least six months of practice before seeking certification to integrate the many elements of the Method. Your trainers will give you feedback about your Hakomi work toward the end of the training. You can consult with them to come up with a certification plan.

Certification Routes

There are 4 main routes to certification.
You may choose one or a combination.

Individual Mentoring

The mentoring process offers detailed feedback and support to help you discover your gifts and growth edges as a practitioner. A certified Hakomi therapist will meet with you on a regular basis to review your recordings, discuss cases, and process character issues that affect your work. 

Any Certified Hakomi Therapist can provide this service; however, only Hakomi Trainers can certify you. When you are ready for certification, you may do live sessions or show recordings of your sessions to two Hakomi trainers, one of whom may be your mentor.

NOTE: You will arrange a fee with your mentor.

Certification Workshops or Trainings

(Sometimes called “Practice Groups” or “Advanced Trainings”)

Some Trainers offer intensive live or online programs where graduates receive certification-specific feedback on live sessions or recordings. If two trainers staff these events, it is possible to become certified at the end of the program. Be aware that enrollment does not guarantee certification since it is proficiency-based.

Trainers also offer monthly open or closed groups to help you prepare for certification. These may incorporate feedback on live sessions or recordings, practice activities, and case consultations. You can check the faculty directory to see who offers these programs. While your group leader may be one of your reviewers, you will still need a second Trainer to review two of your session recordings.

Self-Led Preparation

Graduates can opt to record ongoing sessions with practice clients and select two trainers to review their tapes when they feel ready. 

Certification Phase Study Groups

A group of Hakomi graduates supports each other in getting certified. This support could include the following:

  • Peer feedback on live or recorded sessions
  • Review and practice of selected skills or theory
  • Hiring a Certified Hakomi Therapist or faculty member to observe and offer feedback on sessions

When You're Ready for Certification

NOTE: You will negotiate a fee directly with each reviewer

Step 1

Submit Session Recording One to Reviewer One

Submit Session Recording One to your Certifying Trainer. This reviewer will provide feedback about your work and readiness for certification. Your first reviewer may approve the recording or tell you what skills need refinement.

Step 2

Submit Session Recording One to Reviewer Two

Once Reviewer One agrees you are ready, you may submit Session Recording One to Reviewer Two. The second reviewer may have additional feedback or may approve Session Recording One for certification.

Step 3

Submit Session Recording Two

After both Trainers approve Session Recording One for certification, you can submit Session Recording Two for review.

Step 4

Approval & Certification

Both reviewers will confer and get back to you about their decision.

What to Include

Session Recordings and Write-up

  • Each session recording should display the time and both therapist and client.
  • A write-up of no more than three pages should accompany each session recording that includes:
    • A short description of the session theme
    • A paragraph about the character processes that emerged in the session
    • A report of your therapeutic strategy and interventions
    • Where you went off-course or paths not taken that would have been beneficial

NOTE: The faculty prefers that no more than one of your two recorded sessions be with a client who is a student or graduate of Hakomi.

Blue Quotation Marks

A very supportive and confidence-building training.

I’m inspired by this work and its capacity to offer real support and change for clients, as well as increase confidence in bringing all of myself to the role of therapist.”
Laura Stone
M.A., L.P.C., Colorado

Hakomi Certification Criteria

We expect you to demonstrate a consistent, high-level application of the Hakomi Method. Specifically, to create and maintain a relationship with the client that reflects the Hakomi principles and demonstrates competence in applying our techniques. At a minimum, we want to see that you can manage consciousness, work experientially, study the organization of experience, and support transformation by providing a missing experience.

Below is a list of what trainers are looking for in certification sessions.
You do not have to demonstrate all of them in a single session.



  • I can partner with my client and create a collaborative relationship.
  • I can shuttle in and out, trying on my client’s experience.
  • I can appreciate the many systemic influences on the client beyond the family of origin.
  • I can honor and explore the client’s various internal self-states or “parts.”
  • I can facilitate communication between internal parts. 



  • I can see where my client’s process wants to go.
  • I can trust and facilitate the natural unfolding and reorganization of my client’s experience.



  • I can actively take charge of the process without imposing my agenda.
  • I can recognize, support, and study resistance and protective systems.
  • I can accept and respect all parts of my client’s experience. 



  • I can maintain an observing state of mindfulness in myself and my client.
  • I can be a sensitive, present attendant and companion.
  • I can recognize the presence or absence of mindfulness in my client.
  • I can guide deepening present experience without problem-solving.
  • I can be comfortable with uncertainty and “not knowing.”



  • I recognize and utilize the body as a source of information and an avenue of exploration for my client.



  • I utilize nonverbal contact and contact statements throughout the session.
  • I can attune to and be present with the client throughout the session.



  • I can turn my client inward.
  • I can utilize various accessing and deepening techniques, i.e., Accessing Questions and Directives, Probes (Also called “Prompts”), Taking Over, Experimental Attitude, creating Experiments (Also called “Explorations”), etc.



  • I can recognize and work with deep states of consciousness, i.e., mindfulness, child, and rapids.
  • I can recognize, stabilize, and study core material with my client.
  • I can recognize and work with the barrier.
  • I can avoid using nourishment too much or too soon.
  • I can utilize the options at the nourishment barrier to facilitate transformation.



  • I can help my client understand and relate their experiences in session to their life.
  • I have various ways to integrate new states and discoveries to promote neural reorganization.
  • I can help my client return to ordinary consciousness.
  • I can honor time boundaries even if the process is incomplete.

Upon Certification

  • One of the Trainers who certified you will contact the administrative office to verify your new certification status.
  • The Hakomi Institute will send you a form to complete and return with your $125 certification fee. Once received, the office will send you a frameable certificate.
  • Annual dues cover your listing on the Hakomi Institute website.

NOTE: Certified practitioners who don’t pay dues are still certified, but they are not listed in the directory.

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Continuing Education

As with getting a “black belt,” certification might be considered the beginning of learning. True mastery takes many years of experience and training. If you intend to offer Hakomi, we expect you to engage in ongoing professional development activities, including taking courses in ethics.

We invite you to participate in our Continuing Education offerings. Click here to view our schedule.

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Post-Certification Consultation

Many faculty members provide ongoing consultation to Certified Hakomi Therapists and Practitioners who wish to grow as helping professionals. Consultation may include setting up and running a practice, communicating with clients, billing, record-keeping, managing transference and countertransference, working with character themes and systems, exploring ethical concerns, and general case consultation. Contact faculty members directly to see if they offer consultation.

NOTE: Consultation is a professional obligation for psychotherapists and highly recommended.