What is Craniosacral Therapy?
Few subtle-energy modalities work more energetically deep than craniosacral therapy. About 6 years ago, I had a very powerful and rejuvenating experience with a craniosacral therapist in Thailand that offered Reiki during his sessions as well, which inspired me to get trained myself after I received my massage license. I hope to offer some insight on this powerful alternative therapy and form of bodywork.
Craniosacral therapy (CST) was pioneered and developed by osteopathic physician John E. Upledger following extensive scientific studies from 1975 to 1983 at Michigan State University. It primarily serves to improve the functioning of the central nervous system.
The main objective of craniosacral therapy (CST) is to mobilize and decompress units of the craniosacral system (CSS) — comprised of the membranes and cerebrospinal fluid that surround and protect the brain and spinal cord.
This, in turn, creates an environment for the central nervous system (CNS) that is spacious and relaxed. CST sessions are primarily intended to influence the CSS, a territory that houses, supports, and nurtures the CNS (Night, 2011).
A healthy functioning central nervous system is paramount to our well-being, acting as the main control center for the mind-body interface. The CNS interprets experiences from our external environment, controls body movement, and interprets information from all five senses.
Since the spinal cord is likened to a highway for communication between the body and the brain, when the spinal cord is injured, the exchange of information between the brain and other parts of the body is disrupted. CST assesses any type of injury and facilitates the body’s natural healing process.
CST is notorious for producing subtle results that often can be felt over the course of days or weeks post-treatment, not necessarily immediately after. Even one session of CST can have powerful effects on our mind, energy, and body.
The Importance of Fascia is Often Trivialized
Ignoring the intelligence of cellular activity in the fascia is potentially discarding an essential piece to our healing power.
For many students studying human anatomy, the CSS is overlooked because of so many other vital systems of focus. CST works with osseous structures (primarily the cranial vault & sacrum), membranes (dura & meninges), & fluid (cerebrospinal fluid) that support the brain, spinal cord, & spinal nerve roots (Night, 2001).
CST addresses common issues that can arise from a dysfunction in the CSS, including chronic pain, headaches, and neurological impairment. Most of these problems arise due to one natural occurrence: adhesion (Night, 2001).
Adhesion of core components of the CSS is inherently and intricately connected to the body’s fascia. You can think of the fascia as a natural “saran wrap” that covers and influences everything in the body.
“It can be likened to a three-dimensional web which en-sheathes & supports everything from the skin to the central core of the CNS, even into the cells themselves!” (Night, 2011).
The body is a unit. It is a self-correcting mechanism, and its structure and function are interrelated. Much of its self-healing properties are connected to the body’s fascia and auspiciously to the rhythm of the cerebrospinal fluid.
One task in CST is to successfully palpate the craniosacral rhythm on the cranium and body. Another is to induce a still point in which the craniosacral rhythm is halted — a naturally occurring mechanism in the body throughout the day — in which restoration can take place and in which the parasympathetic nervous system is present: the miraculous healing process of the body.
A still point can be induced by strategically targeting the external occipital protuberance, either with a therapists hands or with a Still Point Inducer, which anyone can learn to use.
“The body is in a state of organized dysfunction. We disorganize it & then ask it to reorganize more functionally. Both take time” (Night, 2011).
Open your heart and share a remarkable journey in transformation with craniosacral therapy.
Kinan received his training from Nick Night in Denver, CO. Nick has pursued extensive training and certification in these techniques and now teaches them in the Pacific Northwest and the Southeast. Nick discovered craniosacral therapy as an extremely effective approach to removing trauma from the body, enhancing vitality, and improving the function of the brain and spinal cord.
Night, N., CST, LMT, AMMP, CPT. (2011). Craniosacral Therapy Level 1. Bisbee, AZ: Warm Hands Therapeutics.
Above all, Kinan’s passion is activating human potential through areas of technology, health, and psychology. He strives to push human innovation to the limit and actively participate in the evolution of consciousness.
Kinan believes we can achieve this primarily in the ways we communicate intelligently, software being a back-bone to global interconnectivity and the transformation of self-destructive behavior being the bridge to greater human connection and empowerment.