ISA Carstens Academy

Our Superb South African School of Somatology


Somatology – what does that say or mean? If you’re in the know or occupied in this exceptionally interesting, fast-growing field, it means a great deal. If not, don’t be taken aback; you’re not alone. Somatology has been described as “the study or science of the human body as a branch of anthropology”.


Although this term has been around for many years, it wasn’t always commonly used in South Africa, outside the realms of specialised practitioners and academia.




According to The Science Council, “Science is the pursuit and application of knowledge and understanding of the natural and physical world following a systematic methodology based on evidence”.


This may sound complicated, but integral aspects of systematic, scientific methodologies bring non-scientists clarity about the definition. Such aspects include:


  • Objective observation, which must be measurable, so that data about the study can be recorded.


  • The study must reveal evidence, which can be verified and tested repeatedly, producing the same results if the scientific study is deemed to reveal truthful, factual, tried-and-tested data.


  • Experiments, critical analysis, evaluations, and assessments should take place.


Anthropology and its Branches


The Cambridge English Dictionary defines anthropology very succinctly: “The study of the human race, its culture and society, and its physical development”, while the Oxford counterpart adds a little more detail to the societal, cultural and developmental aspects: “The study of human biological and physiological characteristics and their evolution”.


One factor is at the heart of all anthropology – it is a science, albeit one that has several branches, including cultural, social, applied, linguistic, archaeological, and biological or physical anthropology, the latter being the branch that incorporates somatology.


School of Somatology


Isa Carstens Academy has been practicing and teaching the science of somatology since its inception in 1978. Mrs Isa Carstens, our founder, was also a pioneer in the introduction of modern somatology, and its incredibly holistic treatments and procedures to South African clients and aspirant somatologists alike.


During the same year, Isa Carstens Academy was the very first South African somatology college to receive CIDESCO accreditation. Mrs Carstens and her erstwhile lecturers began educating and training students of somatology at our original Stellenbosch campus.


Because of our top standards of education and training, Mrs Isa Carstens’ passion, commitment, and dedication to the science of somatology, and her desire to pass on the extensive knowledge she’d acquired over many years, our Stellenbosch academy was exceptionally successful.


The demand for superb training began to outstrip the capacity of our school. As a result, our second campus is now firmly established in Pretoria, where all the opportunities that were fine-tuned in Stellenbosch are now also offered at our Pretoria academy.


You’re therefore able to choose where you prefer to study somatology – in the Cape or in Gauteng. Our diploma course in somatology extends over a 3-year period of full-time study, and you can expect to encounter several scientific subjects in our curricula.


Our residences offer out students first-rate, safe, and secure accommodation, conveniently located close to both campuses, so Isa Carstens Academy is the ideal somatology school for serious students of this exciting field.