I thought I would write a little bit about Craniosacral Therapy (CST) as a healing modality. Yes it is a healing modality/therapy and in my books it is one of the most effective an deeply empowering forms of body work there is. This is due to the ability of the body’s own inherent healing capacity.
I would like to stress that it is the clients body that does its own healing, not the practitioner. I have notice that quite a few of my reviews on here and on my face book page make reference to me being a healer (and a very good one at that from all accounts!!), as flattered as I am with such wonderful statements, I feel it is important from a Craniosacral practitioners perspective that I clarify that it is not me who is healing the person on the table, I am holding a space for the persons body to be listened to, really listened to in a very unique way. The space that is held is safe, open, non judgemental and completely governed by the pace of the client. Basically this is the clients session and I am the facilitator.
On another note I would like to add that I do also have experience in energy healing, this is something that I carried out prior to my CST training. Now although when doing CST sessions I do not lend my focus to the other energy work that I do it would be unrealistic to not expect the healing knowledge held within my system to not be working in some capacity. For in truth everything is energy!
Overall the relational field between client and practitioner is key to providing that safe space for deep healing to take place and I am very happy to be able to offer that space for those willing to receive.
I have a special interest in this topic, the topic of our innate body wisdom. Our bodies are designed to form. Its really a case of each cell, each DNA molecule and so on all knowing what they are meant to be doing, they are working together to create homeostasis within the collective structure of the human anatomy and physiology.
How is it that the cell of an elbow knows to form into that as opposed to the cell of a knee for example? Do they have consciousness? Are they somehow talking to each other? To be honest it really doesn’t matter (unless something goes wrong of course!) they just know!!! Trillions of cells, atoms, DNA nucleus or whatever you want to refer to are in constant communication all of the time, they are all working together in conjunction with one anothers systems of the human body. So the endocrine and lymphatic and so on are working individually in their own system however they are also working collectively to support all the other systems.
I just love this, we are walking miracles, complete universes within universes. Often when illness/disease manifests into form within the physical body its a way for the whole system to inform us that something isn’t working/functioning at its optimum. For example this can be through the elimination process, often this can be skin related conditions as toxin/emotions are being released through a detoxification process. Sometimes this can also be through conditions such as high blood pressure, cholesterol and so on and can even manifest as stress!! Look at what you are taking into your body as this is what feeds you, its not just the food and drink we consume its our emotions, words, thoughts and so on. Be mindful what you are feeding yourself. We work as a unified field of function where everything impacts on everything else. This is why I LOVE Craniosacral Therapy, it works with the whole. Not just one or two but all of the elements of the human system, mind body and soul.
The human body viewed from a holistic point of view has its remarkable own innate healing ability. When symptoms occur its often the bodies way of letting us know that something isn’t right, often when we go and take prescribed medication it can suppress the very thing that is trying to eliminate itself, thus suppression the process. I am not saying that taking western medication is wrong, there is clearly a need for some people and I would always suggest consulting a medical professional if symptoms are causing concern. However its good to also recognise the body talks to us and sometimes its only way is by presenting certain symptoms to get our attention. In the end the choice is always down to the individual.
Oh how I love music, and to be invited to go on my friend’s radio show to talk about the work I do was too good an opportunity to turn down!
Music plays a big role in my life, amongst the sheer enjoyment of listening to many genres it has always been a tool for me to work through my emotions either by listening to the depth of a Dire Straits solo guitar piece or through expression of bodily movement dancing the night away! Music has the capacity to reach any depth of emotion and supports us in releasing through its wonderful vibration.
I find during my craniosacral sessions that the body can display its own rhythmic motion through the craniosacral system. Here is a little example of this motion; video example
These days I often play beautiful soft inviting sounds such as this 639 Hz during my Craniosacral therapy sessions. A lot of my clients state that this type of music offers a supportive gentle holding space for mind and body to settle into stillness thus supportive of the craniosacral experience.
So as I mentioned above I was invited onto my friend Billy Idle’s radio show (The Music Galaxy Radio – MGR) the other week to talk about Craniosacral therapy. He has a lovely little set up in the comfort of his own home which was a great way to experience my first ever live radio show. He plays some lovely music and always starts off with a Nightmares on wax tune, he also plays a little meditation section for listeners to unwind. Speaking about Craniosacral therapy felt like a natural part of his show. So for those of you looking for a new radio station which plays some great music.
There is something to be said for ‘finding health in stillness‘. It is in this quiet place,this space of tranquillity, the motion in the sea where the waves stop crashing and the directions starts to sync; a calm stillness creates a gentle motion.
It is in this motion of fluidity that everything in the human physiological body can slow down and start to re-organise itself towards its own innate health.
This aspect of stillness is often referred to by clients of Craniosacral therapy, many of my clients state that they feel such a state of peace, tranquillity and stillness during and after sessions. Those that meditate say that they feel like they are able to sink deeper into stillness than when they meditate. Clients often describe being in that in-between state of sleep and awake. From a practitioners viewpoint, this is when the body is able to start to work towards health, it has the space to prioritises what areas it wants to work with and goes about re-organising, re-directing and re-aligning. Homeostasis is the body’s natural balance of bodily functions.
Many of us live such busy often stressful lives, often rushing from the minute we get up until the minute we go back to bed, even whilst trying to get to sleep the mind is often found to be going over the days events, regurgitating conversations, actions of yourself or others, how things could of or should of gone differently. It is so important to find time to be still, to be able to drop yourself out of the ‘monkey mind‘ and just breath-allow yourself to connect with the inner aspects of you, without all the noise.
People often come for Craniosacral therapy because they have some form of physical issues such asheadaches or back pain, or longstanding problems both physical and emotional. Others come for ongoing support in their busy lives and for help to meet life’s challenges. Due to Craniosacral therapy being so gentle and non-invasive, it is suitable for everyone from newborns to the elderly. Mothers and babies often come for problems associated with difficult or traumatic births. Letting go of tension and fear held in the body enables both to settle into a calm state of being.
As stated in the tittle; In stillness health can be found.
Just a little short video emphasising the importance of stillness
Dillon’s story sends a powerful message on how he was able to find a road to recovery through Craniosacral therapy (CST) after experiencing such a difficult and challenging time in his life. He developed viral meningitis out of nowhere which had a traumatic effect on his life. Often after someone has experienced such a life changing event it is how they manage after the incident in getting themselves back on track towards their own recovery that can be the most difficult time for them. Thankfully Dillon found CST which supported him back towards a state of balance and health.
Our bodies are extremely complex, we have so many systems within us such as the nervous system, lymphatic and digestive to name a few (not to mention the outer fields such as the emotional/energy body) which all have to work together to maintain homoeostasis. Its easy to see how if one of these systems becomes stressed in anyway how it could impact the others and in turn create another system to overcompensate! CST works with the system as a whole integrated unit.
The practitioner holds a safe space for the persons systems to move into a state of balance and stillness, this offers a holding place for the bodies innate wisdom to start to move towards finding its own inner health. Dillon states this beautifully when he says he had never felt such peace and the feeling of spaciousness.
This video provides a clear example from Dillon of how Craniosacral therapy can support the body towards homoeostasis regarding a number of imbalances the body may experience.
I would like to thank Dillon for sharing his story and to Maria Dillon’s mother who gave me consent to post this, she is a wonderful caring woman who supported her son in being able to access this extraordinary healing modality.
Walking out of stress-make a commitment to managing your stress.
Stress seems to be one of the main issues in peoples lives today, it is unavoidable in our busy world and our bodies are designed to manage a certain amount of this stimulation. However sometimes we can become overwhelmed and unable to cope with life’s demands.
Extended periods of stress can start to produce symptoms which have an impact on our day to day life and if left untreated may lead to further complications. I have experienced this myself, although interestingly enough I was not aware at the time that I was stressed, I kept going as I “believed” I had no choice (responsibilities, bills, rent, dependants etc).The impact of stress on my body which I endured during that time only showed itself years later! I’m not talking about minor stress symptoms such as tension headaches (although these can seem less than minor for the individual experiencing them) or neck and shoulder pain and difficulty sleeping I am talking about the real impact on a cellular memory.
It wasn’t until I listened to myself and the constant thoughts that I had to leave my job that my body was able to settle into a calmer state. This decision enabled me to start my inner nurturing and healing. Along my path Craniosacral therapy (CST) found me!! That’s another story! CST is a natural way of helping our bodies to rest and recover. CST is unique in its ability to treat the source of symptoms on every level, whether mental, physical or emotional. For the best results a series of treatments is recommended. My regular clients inform me that their bodies are able to open up to expression and begin working through various patterns for release, reorganising and correction.
Many of my clients have said they find CST supports their symptoms of stress such as making them feel more relaxed and able to manage things better, sleeping better, less irritable, less overwhelmed and anxious to name but a few. CST works with the autonomic nervous system which controls the organs, glands and smooth muscles of the body. It has a sensory feedback to the central nervous system, CST can help to regulate the nervous system and transform your stress response by listening and sensing what your body is expressing,this also helps you to build up your own inner resources that support your coping mechanisms towards health and vitality.
Craniosacral Therapyis not intended as primary healthcare but to work alongside the relationship you have with your doctor.
Here is a lovely little video describing how Craniosacral therapy can support the body during times of stress.
There is an energy field round each of us that holds information, much of this information is what I would call -held in the emotional or energy field of an individual. It expresses itself through the physical body in unique ways to each individual. The emotional body and the physical body work together, often without the conscious awareness of the individual. The very nature of the work I do provides a platform for expression between the two. The beauty behind this conversation is a privilege to be part of. Our emotions are often complex and layered by life experiences, disappointments, regrets, childhood, relationships and so on, these emotions are held in our energy field and can start to manifest in multiple ways.
Through craniosacral therapy I am able to listen to the body along with the emotions and hear the two have their own conversation.There is often a link between what I would call suppressed emotional needs and where this is showing up in the physical body. By having an open dialog with my client we can often identify the link and this allows them to start to process, release and discharge the held emotions of inertia held on a cellular level. In Peter A. Levine’s book titled `Waking the Tiger` he states “The key to healing traumatic symptoms in humans is in our physiology” He goes on to say “its about energy-Traumatic symptoms are not caused by the triggering event itself. They stem from frozen residue of energy that has not been resolved or discharged; this residue remains trapped in the nervous system where it can wreak havoc on our bodies and spirits”.
The emotional and human body speaks to us, often through pain or discomfort. It is so important that we listen; if not then the body will have to shout louder and louder until we are forced to listen. Lets not allow ourselves to get to this point: Self care is key.
Wonderful short little video of Dr. Levine talking about his breakthrough session with “Nancy.” In this session he first saw the image of a tiger, which later inspired his bestselling book, “Waking the Tiger.”
What is Craniosacral therapy (CST) and how can it support working with babies, mothers and pregnancy?
CST is a nurturing and calming approach to healthcare, the treatment process is gentle and supportive to the physical and emotional needs of the individual. CST can be beneficial for babies in a number of ways such as babies who do not open their mouths widely enough to latch on effectively or “arching or hypertonic.” These types of babies can be difficult to nurse which can impact the mother and in turn family dynamics.
Due to this topic being such a vast subject I will be looking at some of the basic points on how CST can support babies mothers and pregnancy. During pregnancy the woman’s body undergoes huge changes, internally as well as externally. The nervous system coordinates hormonal activity and stress/anxiety can inhibit endocrine functions. Cortisol levels can rise which can impact the baby therefore working with the autonomic nervous system (which is a control system that acts to regulate the bodily functions such as the heart rate, digestion, respiratory rate and so on) can support the expectant mother to move more towards the Parasympathetic nervous system which serves to slow the heart rate, increase intestinal and glandular activity, and relax the sphincter muscles, all good for the baby. CST work can be effective and supportive in a number of ways such as in minor pregnancy ailments like back pain balancing effects on nervous and hormonal systems thus offering support for both mother and baby and preparing for birth.
The birthing experience (which is a highly empowering experience) can also be quite traumatic for mother and baby if things don’t go to plan. These traumas can be held in the body causing various stresses and strains. The baby is very much linked to the mother and if the mother is stressed through lack of sleep or still processing the birth the baby can FEEL this and respond. Once the baby is born CST can support establishing and supporting breastfeeding, developing good sleep patterns, early infant feeding problems including colic, reflux and allergies.
Working with babies and mothers (and dads as well as extended family members if applicable) is a wonderful way to support the unique bonding experience of family dynamics. If you are a parent then you will understand the complexities involved through out the pregnancy not just for the mother but also the relationship of the expectant parents and any other children in the household. Overall Craniosacral therapy offers a safe therapeutic light touch supporting the overall health of expectant mothers and babies, raising vitality and enabling the body’s own self-healing process to be utilised.
Here is a link I came across with more useful information about Craniosacral Therapy for babies and mothers click here
As Craniosacral Therapists, the use of light touch through our hands is what enables us to feel and sense specific rhythms, blockage or ebbs and flows within a client’s system. However I personally believe we all have the ability to tap into our healing nature through our intention to offer another love and acceptance. We do this on a daily basis without often thinking about how important touch is for us as sentient beings. i.e a handshake: There is an exchange of energy in that brief moment, there is also usually eye contact that connects us making the experience not only physical but visual too. Have you ever noticed on those rare occasions when the handshake goes on that little bit longer than usual and eye connect doesn’t seem to break! This suggests to me that a there is a connection being made between the two individuals that makes them feel the connection, allows them to hold that space for a brief moment in time where they exchange a relational field of mutual connection. This is a little bit like Craniosacral Therapy in that there is a relational field built up through the two individuals where an exchange takes place in the comfort and safe environment of the practitioner and client relationship. Through light touch, a deeper sense of what is being held in the client system can be felt and their system can direct the practitioner to where best to place their hands next. So next time you shake hands with someone try and feel the exchange that takes place,you may be surprised at what you sense.
The body is like the ocean, it has many tidal rhythms and hidden depths. It expresses itself in motions through our fluid bodies, tissue muscle, organs and bones etc. These elements within our bodies can become blocked or inhibited through various elements such as stress, trauma held in the body, toxins that we breath in or digest and so on. Just like the ocean we are vast and expressive beings, held in the ever changing current of life. Craniosacral therapy offers the body space to move and express itself from within, seeking balance and harmony through stillness, this is when healing can take place. So when we are caught up in the turbulence of life and we are being thrown out of balance, crashing and twirling like a deep undercurrent, seek that inner stillness that lies at the core of our being just like at the bottom of the sea on the ocean bed. This is where health resides.