Syzygy Institute

IFS-Informed EMDR Experiential Training and Certification

“Healing is a natural, organic, process which emerges under specific conditions. The confluence of EMDR and IFS, honed by knowledge of the memory reconsolidation sequence, as illuminated by Coherence Therapy, can foster those conditions.”


-Bruce Hersey


*Syzygy is when three or more bodies in a gravitational system align in a straight line. The gravitational system is natural healing and the bodies in alignment are... EMDR, IFS & CT.

Mission Statement

Syzygy Institute is the result of the overwhelming popularity and positive responses to Bruce Hersey’s IFS-Informed EMDR courses and consultation offerings. Many EMDR practitioners have improved the safety and effectiveness of their EMDR work with their clients by utilizing these teachings.


The teachings themselves continue to develop and evolve to new levels of integration and complexity. Bruce Ecker’s Coherence Therapy, and its clinical application of neuroscience from memory reconsolidation research has contributed additional insight to these methods, which begin with the application of Richard Schwartz’s Internal Family Systems Therapy (IFS) framework within the Standard Protocol of Eye Movement Desensitization & Reprocessing (EMDR) from Francine Shapiro.


The Institute recognizes a need to promote and maintain high standards of training and treatment in the name of “IFS-Informed EMDR” for the ultimate benefit of the clients who are consumers of psychotherapy services and entitled to informed consent as to the treatment they will be receiving.


Syzygy Institute aspires to develop and maintain a program of training and continuing education in this advanced integrated methodology and train qualified trainers to lead these trainings. Additionally, the Institute aims to offer certification and recertification standards to support recognition and quality assurance as to the title of “IFS-Informed EMDR Practitioner.”


The Institute holds the position that the optimally safe and effective integration of any number of psychotherapy approaches requires that the practitioner is adequately trained in all of the component approaches separately. Therefore, the institute will promote and support basic training and certification processes in both IFS and EMDR, and encourage training in Coherence Therapy.

IFS-Informed EMDR 2022 Workshop Calendar

January 27 & 28 IFS-Informed EMDR 2 day


February 24 & 25 IFS-Informed EMDR 2 day


March 24 & 25 Discovery & Beyond 2 day


May 19 & 20 IFS-Informed EMDR 2 day


September 8 & 9 IFS-Informed EMDR 2 day


One of the following set of dates will be Discovery & Beyond 2 day

(once we determine the EMDRIA and IFS Conference dates):


October 6 & 7

November 3 & 4

December 1 & 2

Our Team

Our team is spearheaded by Bruce Hersey and Michelle Richardson, partners in forming Syzygy Institute, LLC.


Our cadre of talented consultants and trainers-in-training are:


Elizabeth Venart, LPC

Nancy Simons, LPC

Beau Laviolette, LCSW

Crystal Whitlow, LCSW

Erik Anderson. LCSW

Sam Johnson, LPC


Additional Consultants and Guides:


Mary Green, LPC

Robin McMahon, MA

Terry Chapman, LCSW

Lara Seymour, LCSW

Nicole Valles, LPC

Tom Wadleigh, LPC

IFS-Informed EMDR (Proposed) Trainer & Certification Requirements

IFS-Informed EMDR Certified Practitioner (IIE-CP)


1. Completed IFS-Informed EMDR 2-Day & Discovery & Beyond 2-Day

2. Completed 10 hours of IFS-Informed EMDR Consultation with an IIE-AC (current GUIDES grandfathered)

3. EMDRIA certified

4. Completed IFS Level One


IFS-Informed EMDR Approved Consultant (IIE-AC)


1. Has met requirements for IIE-CP

2. EMDRIA Approved Consultant

3. Has been a Guide for EMDR 2-Day twice


IFS-Informed EMDR Assistant Trainer (IIE-AT)


1. Has met requirements for IIE-AC

2. Has been a Guide for Discovery & Beyond 2-Day once

3. Completed all emdrifs.com courses


IFS-Informed EMDR co-Lead Trainer (IIE-cLT)


1. Has met requirements for IIE-AT

2. Has been an IIE-AT for EMDR 2-Day once


IFS-Informed EMDR Lead Trainer (IIE-LT)


1. Has met requirements for IIE-AT

2. Has been an IIE-AT/cLT for EMDR 2-Day twice

3. Has been an IIE-AT/cLT for Discovery & Beyond 2-Day once

4. IFS Certified

5. Completed Coherence Therapy Intermediate course or 12 hours of training from Coherence Therapy Institute