We’ve mentioned Linda O’Grady here before. Her talents include a deep knowledge in the fields of herbalism and yoga and indeed Linda teaches yoga at Sadhana Yoga Centre in the Faythe in Wexford. Never one to stand still Linda has now added Craniosacral Therapy to her list of talents and we’re delighted to pass on Linda’s own description of the history of Craniosacral, how it works and what the client can expect from a session or sessions
“Think of the Body – not as a mechanistic machine but rather as a system of intelligence” – Dr. John E. Upledger (1932 – 2012)
What is CranioSacral Therapy?
CranioSacral Therapy (CST) is a hands on method of whole body evaluation and treatment designed to enhance the functioning of the membranes, tissues, fluids, and bones surrounding or associated with the brain and spinal cord. It positively impacts the nervous system and therefore Every related system of the body. It is safe, exceptionally gentle, non- invasive and incredibly powerful.
How does it work?
Techniques may include fascial release, regional tissue release, suture restriction release enhancing the function of the body’s fluid system, and the cranio-sacral system and the whole body. Therapeutic dialogue may be used to work with emotional components (issues in the tissues). The techniques used are individual to each client, addressing the whole person, and meeting them where they are to access the best treatment route at the right pace. This improves whole-body health and performance.
The treatment is designed to address both current and deeply held patterns of dysfunction which can be caused after accident, life event but also emerge out of everyday physical knocks, bumps, trauma, shock and emotional stress causing the body’s tissues and membranes to contract and tighten, causing the body adapt to get on with things, creating further restrictions (either local or general) in the body, even decades after the event. Imagine a car that has been crashed with the car body crushed. And now consider that though the panel work has dealt with correction to the visual damage, that hidden beneath, there may be unseen damage to the chasse, engine or steering function. If not addressed this will cause issues down the line. CST can address damage deep in the body that can be experienced as physical tension/pain, conditions, emotional anxiety, sadness or be non-specific yet sapping us of energy and our vital life force. Eventually this prevents the organs and the body’s systems functioning at an optimum level.
The treatment also acts to alleviate emotional and mental patterns held in the tissues. The body/mind organises events and feelings like a computer. It files and categorises experiences for our future reference. Sometimes things get mis-filed and organised or categorised together incorrectly eg. filing physical injury and attaching it to an emotion experienced at or around the same time. When this element is addressed with therapeutic dialogue, there can be a profound change in the otherwise stubborn physical issue that has showed no or limited response to other techniques. This approach can facilitate the body/mind to re-organise and separate the emotion from the physical issue and free the tissue from the memory, greatly improving healing rate.
What conditions does CranioSacral Therapy address?
- Concussion and Traumatic Brain Injury
- Migraines and Headaches
- Chronic Neck and Back Pain
- Stress and Tension-Related Disorders
- Motor-Coordination Impairments
- Infant and Childhood Disorders
- Brain and Spinal Cord Injuries
- Chronic Fatigue
- TMJ Syndrome
- Central Nervous System Disorders
- Learning Disabilities
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Orthopedic Problems
- And Many Other Conditions
Is there any condition for which CST shouldn’t be used?
There are certain situations where application of CST would not be recommended. These include conditions where a variation and/or slight increase in intracranial pressure would cause instability. Acute aneurysm, cerebral hemorrhage or other pre-existing severe bleeding disorders are examples of conditions that could be affected by small intracranial pressure changes.
When was CranioSacral Therapy developed?
It was in 1970, during a neck surgery in which he was assisting, that osteopathic physician John E. Upledger first observed the rhythmic movement of what would soon be identified as the craniosacral system. His curiosity piqued, Dr. Upledger began to research the work of Dr. William Sutherland, the father of cranial osteopathy. For some 20 years beginning in the early 1900s, Sutherland had explored the concept that the bones of the skull were structured to allow for movement. For decades after, this theory remained at odds with the beliefs of the scientific and medical communities. Dr. Upledger believed, however, that if Sutherland’s theory of cranial movement was in fact true, this would help explain, and make feasible, the existence of the rhythm he had encountered in surgery.
From 1975 to 1983 he served as clinical researcher and Professor of Biomechanics at Michigan State University, where he supervised a team of anatomists, physiologists, biophysicists and bioengineers in research and testing. The results not only confirmed Sutherland’s theory, but led to clarification of the mechanisms behind this motion – the craniosacral system. Dr. Upledger’s continued work in the field ultimately resulted in his development of CranioSacral Therapy.
What to expect during a treatment
It is so safe and gentle that it is suitable for every age, new-born babies to the elderly. Using a light gentle touch, treatment is given with the client fully clothed. Clients usually express feelings of profound deep relaxation on all levels. When a restriction releases during a CST treatment session the patient may not even notice the affect. Sometimes changes manifest themselves hours or even days later as the body re-organises itself, adjusting and integrating the changes made at the session. Often they can be profound and involve tissue memory releases as well. A child may become noticeably calmer or have increased function in some skill. Effects usually become more evident over time with multiple treatment sessions.
More information available at: www.sadhanayoga.ie
Linda is a fully qualified registered CranioSacral Practitioner (trained with Upledger Institute Ireland), Vinyasa Yoga Instructer and Naturopath & Herbalist. She has been working in the field of Natural Health Care for over 20 years and runs clinics, classes and workshops in Wexford.
Visit the website or call 0873113100 to book a consultation.