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What is Craniosacral?

The craniosacral concept originated with the American osteopath, William Sutherland in 1899. After realising that the cranium is designed to move, he explored the idea further and found a very subtle rhythmic motion of contraction and expansion expressed through the cranium and whole body. 

At first, he focused on the more bony mechanical perspective, which a few cranial osteopaths still concentrate on today, but the more he explored, expanding his attention beyond bony structure to the membranes, muscles and cerebral spinal fluid, he become more aware of something else going on in our bodies, something coming from a deeper source that was enabling the rhythmic motion that he could feel. He realised that it was coming from something more profound, something that he called ‘the breath of life.’

There is wide acceptance in the world of quantum physics that there is a universal field within which everything exists and interacts. Professor Peter Higgs won the Nobel Prize in 2013 for his work in this area. In life all kinds of things can happen to us. Some good, some not so good, and in the modern world today, we are exposed to so many different things, some things that can even cause illness. Our body’s natural tendency is to heal, but sometimes things happen that can be overwhelming. The ‘something’ can be physical such as an accident, traumatic birth,  or being attacked, or it can be emotional, and when this happens our wonderful nervous system goes to work creating our sympathetic response for us to respond with fight, flight or freeze. For some, this response can be so great depending on what happened, it can be then held in us, particularly in our fascia which covers every part of our body. Then as through life as we encounter more physical or emotional issues/events/problems, our sympathetic nervous system again responds, adding to our already heightened state. In this state, our parasympathetic response, the opposite to our sympathetic response is ‘dampened down’ to not work as it should, especially the vagus nerve, a cranial nerve that relaxes our muscles, enables us to digest food more properly, slows our heart rate, and helps steady our breath. 

Craniosacral can work to help better balance to be brought about between the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system, so we can live a bit more ‘parasympathetically’ rather than in a constantly tense and heightened more ‘sympathetic’ state. Then we can live with eased pain, physical or emotional, and hopefully enjoy the more fun and joy of life.

 Most people come for treatment with an issue/problem, but craniosacral goes deeper than forcing a fix on you. Most people relax so much during a treatment they fall asleep, but for some, especially if really big things have happened, it can bring up memories, sometimes memories of things that you have forgotten, and that can sometimes feel a bit bumpy and can make you feel emotional as things held in are brought up to be processed out of your system to pass.

Very occasionally people may need a bit of extra help during this time if the past trauma was particularly severe, some find journey work with it to be of great help.

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