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The wonders of Craniosacral Therapy

Have you been  hearing all of the talk about CranioSacral therapy? How it helps with Concussions and Traumatic Brain Injuries? That football players such as former NFL player Ricky Williams have found relief from post concussion brain injuries( CBI ) and CST is a full body non invasive manual therapy treatment.  A type of manual therapy that identifies the areas in the body that hold tightness in the fascia causing pain and discomfort.  The technique applies light touch to the body from head to toe, while fully clothed on a massage table. The light touch detects tightness in the fascia while tuning into the nervous system, activating the inner physician.  These areas are referred to “listening stations” on the body. CranioSacral Therapy releases these restrictions allowing the entire body to relax, unwind and self-correct. The inner physician is a term that John E Upledeger referred to as the way the body responds to the amazing modality that he created.

CranioSacral Therapy (CST) was pioneered and developed by osteopathic physician John E. Upledger following extensive scientific studies from 1975 to 1983 at Michigan State University, where he served as a clinical researcher and Professor of Biomechanics. Dr. Upledger referred to the practice as “activating your Inner Physician” in his book Your Inner Physician and You – CranioSacral Therapy and SomatoEmotional Release. The book is extremely informative and explains the CranioSacral system and goes into depth about what the CranioSacral system is and many fascinating cases of how Dr. Upledger  treated his patients with this incredible holistic modality.

I have had countless positive experiences over the last decade providing CST services to my clients. I have worked with clients with chronic migraines headaches, severe anxiety, insomnia and severe pain in every part of the body. I have worked with clients that had chronic emotional pain.   One of the most memorable experiences I have had was when I worked with a child that had a traumatic brain injury. The child was not able to walk, speak or feed himself. The Chiropractor that had been seeing him since the injury two years prior had suggested that he see a CranioSacral therapist.

The first session with this child was quite moving. After a brief intake I began the session by gently cradling his head in my hands to start the session. Within a short period of time his voice became activated and he started to make as sound. A kind of singing Ahhhh sound. His mother began to cry said she that she had not heard his voice in two years. Needless to say this was an incredibly emotional moment and I was filled with gratitude for the ability to practice this wonderful modality. I continued to see the child for 2 more years and every month he showed improvement in his ability to sleep and his focus improved significantly.

I became interested in CST during Massage Therapy school. CST was one of the many modalities that was included in my initial the training.  I became fascinated at the energetic nature of the work,  in that so much change could occur in the body with such light touch. And how the muscles responded with deep relaxation and tension release.  As opposed to massage where the muscles are manipulated with deeper pressure forcing the muscle to let go.

I personally had a profound experience during the first practice exchange with a classmate during our first CST class. During the session, the gentle touch was so relaxing, I entered a deep meditative dreamlike state. Suddenly I was transported back to a very pleasant childhood memory. My family was visiting my God parents home. I loved their house, the swimming pool and most of all my God mothers dog. I was there as my 8 year old self and heard the sounds of laughter, smelled the delicious food and felt the soft fur of my favorite dog Tuffy.  That night I slept better than I had in months. There were others in class that had very profound similar experiences and many experienced relief of physical pain.

As a result, I became very interested in learning all I could about CST. I enrolled in an advanced training program with the Upledger International. This training would entitle me to earn certification through the Upledger Institute and entitle me to further training including working  with Dolphins. Wow! Could this be real? I grew up watching as a kid, a mid 1960’s TV show about a Dolphin named Flipper. Now after all these years there was a possibility of working with Dolphins? I’ll talk more about that later.

The Upledger Institute International, is a World-Class Training Institute and has been training manual therapists for over 35 years in evidence-based disciplines. Supporting over 125,000 manual therapists in 122 countries with acclaimed healthcare education. Please see at http://www.upledger.com for more information.

The clients I see the most improvement in from receiving CST are coming to me with chronic pain. Some with headaches including migraines, sleep disorders, anxiety and PTSD,  were getting considerably better in a short  amount time.  One of my clients that was an emergency room nurse for more than 20 years had suffered from chronic migraines headaches for years.  She came to see me for a few CranioSacral therapy sessions.  After the third session, she had profound relief.  So much so that she cancelled her fourth session and only visits me from time to time during the year for what she calls a “tune up”.

It is recommended that a person try at least 5 sessions for best results. I find that it really depends on the person. Most of my clients continue to come to sessions long after their reasons for initially seeing me as the work helps with day to day life. Especially now in this day and age where we are overstimulated with electronics in so many forms. I like the peaceful meditative state it instills which is the key. Creating the condition to help the body remember that it heals itself.

On client brought her father to me. He had neck pain for several week and the pain continued to get worse.  He refused to go to the doctor because he did not want to take any medication that he was sure would be prescribed. This led her to find other remedies. A close friend had suggested that she find a CranioSacral therapist.  By the time she brought him to see me, he was unable to move his neck and was in severe pain. After a few weekly sessions, he was able to play golf again. Although he ran a large company and he loved his work, he missed playing golf the most.

Now about the Dolphins. I found out about the Dolphin Assisted Therapy After the third course Somoto Emotional  Response One, I will be eligible to attend  the Integrative Intentions Dolphin Assisted Therapy program, in Freeport Bahamas.

The c and the clients and patients are taken to the ocean water. These amazing creatures swim up from the the depths of the ocean to help the therapists that are treating their clients. It is a sight to behold seeing how dolphins intuitively know and show up and assist in the healing process. The dolphins help by using their sonar and even touch the clients with their body. This is a most fascinating phenomena and something I am looking forward.  This is beautifully outlined  and shown in the magnificent movie Touch -The Healing Legacy of Dr. John E Upledger

 

 

Utilizing this amazing technique in my personal massage therapy practice has given me a purpose that is unmistakable. My mission now is to use this incredible technique on as many people as I can. This work has helped to to look at the body in such a different way. At this time in the world  where life seems so complicated, the simple technique of Craniosacral therapy is needed now more than ever.

 

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