What is Craniosacral Therapy?
Craniosacral therapy is a light touch technique designed to enhance the overall functioning of the central nervous system through its impact on the cerebrospinal fluids that encase the brain, spine, and their surrounding membranes. In short, due to complex nature of our world and our body’s responses to it, everyone can benefit from its therapeutic aid. Following is a short list of specific ailments and illnesses where craniosacral therapy is remarkably effective:
infant and childhood disorders
Central nervous system disorders
Post‐Traumatic Stress Disorders (PTSD)
neurovascular or immune disorders
chronic neck and back pain
stress and tension related problems
concussions and traumatic brain injuries (TBI)
motor coordination impairments
Craniosacral Therapy History
William Sutherland, D.O., began practicing Cranio Osteopathy in the late 1890’s. The first to observe gill-like bones in the cranium, his observations led him to conclude that the cranium and sacral systems function synchronously through movement and ‘breathing,’ the power of a correlated respiratory system. Also to Sutherland’s credit, a detection of a subtle energy field, seemingly generated and awakened inside client’s bodies, was also found to positively impact the course of treatment. This ‘biodynamic’ approach ultimately shifted the course of craniosacral study in the direction of a holistic practice, among the first of its kind. Through the mid‐1950’s Cranio Osteopathy gained popularity almost exclusively amongst Medical Doctors, Dentists, and Osteopathic Doctors.
Beginning in the 1975’s the name Upledger became almost synonymous with craniosacral therapy. John Upledger set out to extend Dr. Sutherland’s investigative work of the inter‐workings of the cranium and sacral systems. Today, thanks to the efforts of Upledger and a remarkable team of scientists, craniosacral therapy is widely practiced and renowned for the clarity with which it communicates with the physical, emotional, and psychological aspects of its beneficiaries.
What to Expect
During Craniosacral therapy, the practitioner listens with a series of hand placements about the pressure of the nickel, in different places on the body, including the upper back/spine, areas on and around the head/skull, above the chest/sternum, on and around the hips and sacrum, and near the ankles. Clothes are worn during the session, which typically lasts 60 to 90 minutes. Clients can expect to experience deep relaxation. Clients can remain clothed, but I recommend (but at your choice and comfort) removing restrictive items such as belts or bras so that you can relax and feel comfortable in the body. I encourage clients to express as they like during the session – ask questions, make comments about what is felt or noticed, express emotions that may arise, move the body as necessary, etc, and you may just become very relaxed.
Every body will respond differently to craniosacral therapy. Some may find one session very effective, while others may require at least 4 sessions to begin noticing a difference in their condition. A series of 10 sessions is typically recommended for adults. It is possible for long-term sufferers, or those with heavy armoring to experience an intensity in symptoms, and may feel worse after the first 1 or 2 sessions. I find this to be the exception. Those experiencing particularities for which a change in intracranial pressure would prove detrimental should avoid craniosacral treatment. Two such examples include acute aneurysm and cerebral hemorrhaging.
These sessions are also available as Distance Craniosacral Therapy appointments.