Creating a Tapestry – Weaving Together EMDR and CAT ~ 26 April 2024

Past Catalyse Event

A one day workshop led by Mark Walker and Alison Jenaway

Event Hashtag #CATEMDR24

Date: Friday 26th April 2024
Time: 9:30am to 4:30pm
Venue: Holyoake House, Hanover Street, Manchester, M60 0AS
Fees:  ACAT member :: £125.00
non-ACAT member :: £140.00

The event fee included lunch and refreshments, and all attendees would eceive an attendance certificate for their CPD records.

Overview of workshop:

During this experiential day we aimed to explore the integration of CAT and EMDR, drawing on various strands of theory and practice. We shared our own ways of working with EMDR within a “CAT envelope”. We considered how CAT and EMDR can complement each other when working with complexity. Additionally, we reflected on how different reciprocal roles may emerge in the therapeutic relationship as we move between different ways of working.

As this CPD day was for those practising both models, we invited participants to share their own expertise with each other, regarding the pros and pitfalls of integration.

This day provided an opportunity to hear about these two experienced facilitators’ ways of integrating EMDR with CAT, with plenty of opportunity for experiential exercises to illustrate aspects of integration.

Aims and learning outcomes:

Via role plays and sharing, the workshop aimed to help participants develop their confidence in using EMDR with CAT. The emphasis was on integrating the two approaches, rather than doing two therapies consecutively. This in turn aimed to support more efficient use of session time, alongside attending to both technique and process. In particular the day explored the ‘how to’ in terms of:

  • introducing ideas from EMDR early on in the reformulation phase
  • creating safety and the use of positive resources
  • managing hyper and hypo arousal
  • selecting targets to work on
  • using the CAT diagram for reflection throughout the work, and
  • attending to reciprocal roles in the therapeutic relationship as different ways of working are introduced

Who was it for?

This event was relevant for therapists qualified in cognitive analytic therapy, having completed at least one level of EMDR training, and practising both models in their work.

Feedback from the first run of this event

Rich discussions about integrating EMDR and CAT – having recently trained in EMDR, I really valued a chance to think more relationally with other CAT therapists. It was useful to talk through clinical dilemmas in processing work and to think more about bringing neurobiology-informed approach into CAT more.

I enjoyed this training so much and learnt a huge amount. I have been struggling with how to integrate EMDR into my CAT practice for several years. This training gave me a very clear idea of how I can now start to do this. I have clear ideas of changes I will make to my practice immediately. I was able to think about the next steps for a lot of the clients I currently have on my caseload. I found it particularly helpful that Alison leans more to CAT and Mark more to EMDR, as that gave different but not competing ideas as to how to integrate the two models. I also found the focus on early resourcing very helpful, which I will aim to do more of with almost all of my clients from now on.”


Mark J Walker: I am a Cognitive Analytic Therapy (CAT) therapist, trainer and senior supervisor and an EMDR Europe Accredited Consultant. Over 33 years in practice I have gained a wide range of experience having worked in therapeutic communities, out-patient and secondary care psychotherapy services, CMHTs and private hospitals as a clinician and service manager.

I currently work part time in the NHS and partly in private practice, contributing to CAT and EMDR trainings across the UK. I offer private consultations, clinical supervision, training and therapy to individuals, groups and corporate organisations.

My interest in ‘integration’ and specifically bringing the body and spirituality into my work furthers my interest in current developments in neuroscience disciplines and body based therapies becoming more mainstream eg Yoga, Taichi, and Qigong.

Alison Jenaway: I am a CAT practitioner and supervisor and a past Chair of ACAT.  I recently semi-retired from working as a consultant psychiatrist in psychotherapy in the NHS. I used CAT initially with young people and their parents, and more recently with people with physical health problems within a liaison psychiatry service.  On a voluntary basis, I still work for the NHS one day a week providing CAT supervision and reflective practice sessions for staff.  

I frequently use Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) within my CAT work. Alongside a small private practice, I am currently half way through the IRRAPT CAT psychotherapy training.


Holyoake House, Hanover Street, Manchester, M60 0AS

Holyoake House is a few minutes walk from Victoria Rail Stations and also close to Shudehill Tram Interchange.

Group Size

Places were limited to a maximum of twenty-five participants.