CranioSacral Therapy (CST) is a light-touch manual therapy approach that enhances the body’s natural healing capabilities and has been shown to be effective for a wide range of medical problems associated with pain and loss of function. It was initially discovered by Dr William G Sutherland in the early 1900’s and scientifically validated and developed by Dr John Upledger. The Upledger Institute continually researches and improves upon existing scientific techniques.

How Does CranioSacral Therapy Work?

CranioSacral Therapy works by helping the body’s natural healing mechanisms dissipate the negative effects of stress on the central nervous system.
This is accomplished through utilizing a physiological body system called the CranioSacral system, which maintains the environment in which the central nervous system functions. It consists of the membranes and cerebrospinal fluid that surround and protect the brain and spinal cord, extending from the bones of the skull, face and mouth (which make up the cranium) down to the tailbone area (or sacrum). The role of this system in the development and performance of the brain and spinal cord is so vital that an imbalance or dysfunction in it can cause sensory, motor and/or neurological disabilities.

Like the pulse of the cardiovascular system, the CranioSacral system has a rhythm that can be felt throughout the body. Using a touch generally no heavier than the weight of a nickel, skilled practitioners can monitor this rhythm at key body points to pinpoint the source of an obstruction or stress. Once a source has been determined, they can assist the natural movement of the fluid and related soft tissue to help the body self-correct. This simple action is often all it takes to remove a restriction. Other times, CST may be combined with other complementary therapies to help restore the body to its optimum functioning level.

By complementing the body’s natural healing processes, CST is effective for a wide range of medical problems associated with pain and dysfunction. CST is also increasingly used as a preventive health measure for its ability to bolster resistance to disease.

Although Craniosacral Therapy is usually successful for treating these health disorders this is just the tip of the iceberg. Craniosacral Therapy believes that everyone is born with an underlying infinite order of intelligence or “vital force” energy (often referred to as” chi” in Chinese Medicine). This is the same intelligence that keeps your heart beating and runs your body. This constant undetectable intelligence is carried by the nervous system to every cell in your body supplying it with all the information it needs to function as planned, every day.


Craniosacral Infinity image

CranioSacral Therapy (CST) is a gentle treatment, deeply relaxing and soothing, and as you allow your body to experience your craniosacral rhythm, it becomes a learning experience as well.  CST works on the connection between the sacrum, spine and skull. It helps to correct structural imbalances in the body, restoring impeded circulation, alleviate any nerve impingement and to allow dysfunctional cells to heal themselves.


Examples of conditions managed with CST include:

  • Migraine headaches
  • Chronic neck and Back pain
  • Motor-Co-ordination impairments
  • Colic
  • Autism
  • Central Nervous System Disorders (stroke, multiple sclerosis, Bell’s palsy)
  • Orthopaedic problems
  • Scoliosis
  • Infantile disorders
  • Learning disabilities
  • Chronic Fatigue
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome
  • Emotional difficulties (anxiety, depression)
  • Stress and Tension-related Problems
  • Fibromyalgia and other Connective-Tissue Disorders
  • Temporomandibular Joint Syndrome (TMJ)
  • Neurovascular or Immune Disorders (rheumatoid arthritis, shingles)
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Post-Surgical Dysfunction

Innate Intelligence

Craniosacral Therapists call this innate Intelligence. This is the intelligence that heals the body and is always with you! If every cell in your body is functioning at 100% then you will have optimal health. Unfortunately structural imbalances and spinal misalignments can interfere with the transmission of this innate intelligence, causing imbalance and altered cell formation that in time can create many health problems and disease. The main job of a Craniosacral Therapist is to help correct structural imbalances in the human body allowing the innate intelligence to go where it needs to go and to restore impeded circulation, alleviate any nerve impingement and thus allowing dysfunctional cells to heal themselves. The power that made your body can heal your body. Craniosacral Therapy helps to turn on your healing power and creates optimal health.

Light-touch Therapies

Craniosacral Therapy does not involve any spinal manipulations or adjustments but focuses on the use of Light-touch therapies to align the structural integrity of the body that is the root cause of many structural and spinal imbalances. The Craniosacral Therapist therefore may employ a number of techniques from different healing modalities to assist in rebalancing the integrity of the body. Techniques may include, but are not limited to: Myofascial Release Therapy, Positional Release Therapy, Muscle Energy technique Therapy, Polarity Therapy or Acupressure.

A CST Treatment

When receiving a Craniosacral Treatment you lie on the massage table fully clothed. Your cranium (skull) is cradled and gently held to allow subtle shifts of movement to happen in the whole body and to encourage the optimal flow of cranial-sacrum fluid between the brain, spine and sacrum. Your body is guided into numerous still points (a deep point of relaxation), and allows an unwinding and release that supports well being on all levels. Craniosacral Therapy supports people with a range of issues whether they are physical, neurological or emotional to bring a deeper healing. This experience will leave you balanced with a gentle degree of correction at the same time.

Lia Pellizzerri - Integrated Naturopath

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