Dual-Accredited Cuddle Therapy Course

Updated: Jul 13

We’ve been hard at work during the lockdown to update our training programme. Our cuddle therapy course now includes contributions from world-leading industry experts and is accredited by the Complementary Medical Association (CMA) and the International Council for Online Educational Standards (ICOES).

Our Co-Founder and CEO, Rebekka Mikkola says, “I am excited about our new course and the input we’ve received from many leading authorities in the touch research and medical fields. I believe this course will move the cuddle therapy industry forward and inspire more people to enjoy the healing benefits of touch and cuddles. Ultimately, hugs are a natural analgesic for many issues in our lives today.”

We are therefore proud to introduce you to our new cuddle therapy course and hope it provides inspiration for a rewarding career as a cuddle therapist.

Enrol our training course here.

About Our Course

Our course is comprised of an online theory element (£129) and a separate practical element (additional cost of £110) and is designed to give you the tools and knowledge you need to begin practising as a cuddle therapist.

In the theory element, you’ll discover how to conduct a cuddle session, how to stay safe, how to maintain boundaries and consent, and will also gain an understanding of why touch is so important for our lives. After studying our theory course, you’ll then answer a theory based test at a convenient time of your choosing. A score of at least 90% is required in this test, before being able to proceed to the practical training.

There are three options for the practical training:

· Option 1 (RECOMMENDED FOR ALL). Complete a two hour practical session with our co-founder, Rebekka Mikkola. During this practical session, you will go through initial questions with your training instructor, before they lead you through a condensed structured session. You will then lead a short session and will be assessed on how you followed the basic session structure and whether you showed competence of fundamental principles including boundaries and consent. You’ll then receive feedback following on from your assessment and the next steps to be taken. The session will cost £110 and we recommend this option for all trainees.

· Option 2. For those who have an existing background in cuddle therapy or a related touch therapy field, you have the option of booking a one hour practical session. During this practical you will lead a session from start to finish and be assessed on your competence of following the structured session format and fundamental principles including boundaries and consent. This session will cost £55, but we still recommend the first option even for highly experienced touch therapists.

· Option 3. Any trainees unable to get to London for the practical session (i.e. for trainees living outside the UK), you have the option of recording a session with a volunteer client and submitting that for review. You’ll be assessed in the same manner as to whether you’ve followed the structured session format and showed evidence of adhering to the basic principles, such as boundaries and consent.

After completing both elements of the training, we’ll send you your certificate and assess your eligibility for listing on the platform (London-based only). Please note that completion of the course doesn’t guarantee a listing on the platform. If accepted, we’ll ask for details to create your profile, as well as a valid DBS check, insurance and a signed copy of our practitioner agreement before we list you.

The course can be studied at your own pace and can be purchased here.

Expert Contributions – Our Medical and Wellness Advisory Board

Nordic Cuddle has developed a medical and wellness advisory board comprised of some of the world’s leading medical, and touch research experts. These experts have helped shape our training programme and we are proud to have chapter contributions from each of our members listed below.

Professor Kory Floyd, PhD

Kory Floyd is a professor of interpersonal communication and the author of 16 books and more than 100 scientific papers and book chapters. This includes The Loneliness Cure: Six Strategies for Finding Real Connections in Your Life. He is an elected fellow of the International Communication Association. His work has been recognised with both the Charles H. Woolbert award and the Bernard J. Brommel award from the National Communication Association, as well as the Distinguished Scholar award from the Western States Communication Association and the Early Career Achievement award from the International Association for Relationship Research.

Raised near Seattle, Kory earned an undergraduate degree in English at Western Washington University. He then received his master’s degree in communication from the University of Washington and his PhD in communication from the University of Arizona, where he is now a professor of communication and a professor of psychology. His work focuses on how people show affection for each other in their close relationships and on the problems we face when we don't have enough intimacy in our lives.

Dr Emilia Vuorisalmi, MD

Emilia Vuorisalmi is a medical doctor, TV personality, non-fiction author and entrepreneur from Finland. Vuorisalmi works as a private practitioner focusing on preventive medicine and holistic wellbeing. Vuorisalmi believes love is the strongest medicine and wants you to learn to use it right.

In August 2015, Vuorisalmi published her first book Sekaisin LOVEsta which is a scientific exploration of the issues of falling in love and being in a relationship. She discusses the effects of hormones and stress on maintaining a successful relationship, and also attempts to answer why we fall in and why we break-up. Sekaisin LOVEsta is published by Otava in Finland.

Her next book “Own Love” is coming out in October 2020. The book will teach you how to create a sustainable love model that will stabilise the love hormones and keep you healthy and thriving. Photo credit: Marica Rosengård.

Dr Juulia T. Suvilehto, D.Sc.(Tech)

Juulia is a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Centre for Social and Affective Neuroscience at Linköping University. Her PhD research was centered around social interaction, particularly paradigms and practices related to social touching behaviour. Now she is working on multiple projects examining individual variation in social touch perception. She is driven by a curiosity about how humans establish and maintain social bonds. Her other research interests include pain and its relationship to experiencing emotions in the body and combining large scale (e.g. online) data collection with more traditional laboratory-based measurements.

She has previously worked as a Postdoctoral Researcher at the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Oxford, and been a Visiting Researcher at the Department of Psychology at the University of Cambridge. She has won numerous awards and honours, including the Aalto University Dissertation Award for exceptionally distinguished dissertation. She was recently awarded a two-year research grant worth 2.3 million Swedish krona from the Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life, and Welfare for a project starting in 2020.

Dr. Liliya T.B Wheatcraft, MD, MSc (Cantab), DCH, MRCPsych

Liliya is a Psychiatrist, Autism Consultant and retired medical doctor. She is a full Member of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, UK, and a member of the Neurodevelopmental Psychiatry Special Interest Group. She is building a portfolio career capitalising on her one-of-a-kind expertise in

Neurodevelopmental conditions, such as Autism & ADHD. She has a well-rounded clinical background, training in trauma and orthopaedic surgery, paediatrics, and General Practice before specialising in Psychiatry. She has studied at both the University of Cambridge (fully funded by Gates Cambridge Scholarship & Overseas Research Studentship) and the University of Oxford (funded by her employer, as an Academic GP Registrar).

Liliya trained in Paediatric Medicine in Oxford Children's Hospital, and she holds a Diploma in Child Health from the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, UK. She has also completed the core training modules at the University of Oxford Evidence-Based Medicine programme, run jointly by the Department of Primary Care with the Department of Continuous Education.

Additional Expert Contributions

We would like to express our thanks to Dr Betty Martin for aiding us with an explanation of the Wheel of Consent and for graciously allowing us to include the Wheel of Consent in our course. Consent is a fundamental part of our work and this is a crucial addition to our training.

We are also grateful to Deb Dana for allowing us to include her concise guide to the polyvagal theory entitled, ‘A Beginner's Guide to the Polyvagal Theory’, within this course. Understanding how the Autonomic Nervous System works and how this influences our behaviour is key to delivering safe and comforting sessions.

CMA Course Accreditation

Nordic Cuddle are proud to have one of the first dual-accredited cuddle therapy courses in the world. The first of our accreditation bodies is the CMA and we are also members of their organisation. This in turn entitles our trained practitioners to some great benefits, which you can find out about below.

As you’ll know, Nordic Cuddle has been recognised as a Centre of Excellence by The Complementary Medical Association (The CMA). This means that we are proud to say that we hold full Training School Membership of The Complementary Medical Association. This Membership is highly prestigious, and it demonstrates our commitment to the very highest standards of excellence in training courses - and our dedication to supporting you, as our student.

When you successfully complete this course, you will be eligible to apply for Full Membership of The Complementary Medical Association and will be entitled to use the letters MCMA after your name. You can also join right now in The CMA’s Student Membership category and upgrade to Full MCMA Membership as soon as you graduate.

The Complementary Medical Association is the world’s largest and most highly respected professional membership association. The organisation has been established for over 25 years and they work closely with conventional medicine by sharing research and education to doctors about the natural healthcare field and why they should incorporate complementary medicine (as provided by qualified CMA Members) into their practices.

International Council for Online Educational Standards (ICOES) Accreditation

The second of our accreditation bodies is the International Council for Online Educational Standards (ICOES).

ICOES is the accrediting body that establishes, monitors and continually develops the educational standards of online teaching institutions. Registered as a non-profit organisation in the Netherlands, ICOES sets out the academic, institutional, ethical, operational and business standards for training providers to meet, in order to gain accreditation.

ICOES accreditation means that we’ve passed a formal evaluation and audit and met the highest standards of online education provision. The standards ICOES sets reassure students that they’re learning with an ethical and efficient institution and that the course is of a guaranteed high quality.

Purchase Our Online Course Today!

For the month of July, we are offering £30 off the cost of our cost (from £129 to £99) using the code july30 at the checkout. To find out more and to purchase our course, visit our dedicated training platform here. We look forward to welcoming you on this rewarding journey!