CRANIAL SACRAL THERAPY
Cranial Sacral Therapy is a gentle, non-invasive form of bodywork that is able to directly influence the nervous system, brain and spinal chord. The technique is used to find and release areas of restriction, transform old holding patterns, and stimulate a relaxation response at the deepest levels of experience.
Using light contact, sometimes as little as one gram of pressure or less, the practitioner guides the cranium, sacrum or other structures interacting with the nervous system towards balance. Through this subtle approach, the practitioner is able to pick up and follow barely perceptible patterns of motion within the body that reflect the inherent motion and restrictions in the cranium, nervous system tissue and their effecting structures.
Any pathological restrictions in the body will influence this motion and the goal of this work is to encourage the balance of these inherent biological rhythms. By responding appropriately to these subtle patterns of movement and gently allowing these movements to unwind, the Cranial Sacral therapist is able to bring balance back to the nervous system, and the entire body.
The approach is entirely non-invasive. The subtle interaction of therapist and client stimulates and enhances self-healing mechanisms within the body to release and expand into a more balanced healthy state.
Cranial Sacral Therapy is a perfect compliment to the basic Hellerwork series, or to Somatic Experiencing sessions.
Movement and life are inseparable. There can be movement without life, but there can not be life without motion. When we have access to more movement we feel more alive. There are many levels of activity in the body, from muscular movement, to cellular pulsations, rhythmic contractions of the heart, and diaphragm and cerebral spinal fluid, and more subtle gravitational movements in the organs. These subtle movements in the organs can have a profound effect on the overall health of the rest of the body. The visceral system relies on the interconnected synchronicity between the motions of the organs and other structures of the body. At optimal health, these harmonious relationships maintain equilibrium despite the body’s endless varieties of motion.
But when one organ cannot move in harmony with the surrounding organs or it’s supporting structures because of abnormal tone, adhesions or displacement, it works against the body’s other organs and muscular membranous, fascial and osseous structures. This disharmony creates fixed, abnormal points of tension that the body is forced to move around. That chronic irritation, in turn, paves the way for disease and dysfunction. ?Imagine an adhesion around the liver. It would create a modified axis that demands abnormal accommodations from nearby structures that the body would have to protect with more superficial holding. Visceral mobility has a profound effect on how free we are to move in our bodies.
Visceral Manipulation employs specifically placed manual forces that work to encourage the normal mobility, tone and motion of the viscera and their connective tissues. By harnessing the rhythmic motions of the organs, we can evaluate and balance how visceral forces interplay, overlap and improve the normal healthy forces of movement in the body. These gentle manipulations can improve the functioning of individual organs, the systems the organs function within, and the structural integrity of the entire body.
This is subtle, gentle and extremely effective work.
Visceral Work in Structural Integration
Visceral work as it is done by Osteopaths is a treatment for visceral disease. However, there is a way of working with the fascia of the viscera to help with the goals of structural integration. Any fixation in this fascia can affect support, balance and ease just as a fixation in the connective tissue of a muscle or a joint would. The fascia of the viscera has strong affects on the structures of the body. Releasing strains in the organs can be very helpful in enhancing core support and organizing the spine, pelvis and shoulder girdle. Combining indirect and direct techniques we can release, balance and integrate this core fascia and further open and align the entire structure. I have spent the last 16 years of study in the application of visceral techniques to structural integration. I continue to expand my knowledge and application of this work in my practice, through study groups with other therapists, and in continued training.
For more information about visceral work in Structural Integration the following article provides more information on the subject: