Craniosacral Therapy

How Does CranioSacral Therapy Work?

cranio therapy CranioSacral Therapy helps the body's natural healing mechanisms dissipate the negative effects of stress on the central nervous system. Relieving pain, and restoring one's ability to recover from injury at a more accelerated pace.
This is accomplished through the craniosacral system, which maintains the environment in which the central nervous system functions. This system consists of the membranes and cerebrospinal fluid that surround and protect the brain and spinal cord. It extends 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 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. Rather than deciding how these changes should be made, the therapist follows cues from the body on how to proceed. This gentle approach is extremely safe and effective. Other times, CST may be combined with other complementary therapies to help restore the body to its optimum level of functioning.

What to Expect… How a session is performed.

experience a session A CranioSacral Therapy session usually takes place in a quiet, private setting wearing loose comfortable clothing. The session is performed with the client reclining, on a massage table or sitting if needed. Hand positions work through "stations" at various times throughout the session at the client's head, middle torso or feet; working with the cranial bones, spinal fluid and sacrum.

What you may experience during a session:

Experiences during a CST session are as individual as the clients and practitioners themselves. They also may differ from session to session. At times, a client may deeply relax or even fall asleep; at other times, he or she may talk a great deal, recalling hidden memories or expressing emotions. Some will remain still during the entire session, hardly noticing the practitioner's evaluation and treatment, while others will experience sensations within the body as the evaluation process is carried out.
At various times throughout the session, the practitioner will support a client's limbs and spine while facilitating release of accumulated tension. This process is called energy cyst release or tissue release. During this release, the client might recall circumstances surrounding a past shock, trauma or injury. Releasing and re-experiencing past hurts assists the body in reversing dysfunction and restoring the previous level of mobility. This entire process has been named SomatoEmotional Release®.

What you may experience following a session:

This relaxed state may cause some to sleep for many hours after a session; others may experience an increase in energy. Reduction of pain or an increase in function may occur immediately after the session, or it may develop gradually over the next few days.
Since CST helps the body resume its natural healing processes, it isn't unusual for improvement to continue weeks after the session. For some there may be a reorganization phase as the body adapts to the release of previously held patterns.
By complementing the body's natural healing processes, CST is increasingly used as a preventive health measurewhat you may experience following a session for its ability to bolster resistance to disease, and is effective for a wide range of medical problems associated with pain and dysfunction.

What CST can help with:

  • Mental Stress
  • Chronic Neck and Back Pain
  • Migraines & Headaches
  • Chronic Fatigue
  • Motor-Coordination Impairments
  • Emotional Difficulties
  • Stress and Tension-Related Problems
  • Fibromyalgia and other Connective-Tissue Disorders
  • Neurovascular or Immune Disorders
  • Central Nervous System Disorders
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Post-Surgical Dysfunction
  • Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction (TMJD)
  • Scoliosis, Kyphosis, Lordosis
  • Frozen Shoulder
  • Orthopedic Problems
  • Central Nervous System Disorders
  • Traumatic Brain and Spinal Cord Injuries
  • Autism
  • Infantile Disorders
  • Learning Disabilities
  • ADD/ADHD
  • Colic


cerebrospinal fluid The few contraindications to CranioSacral Therapy are: aneurysm, intracranial hemorrhage, and other conditions where altering intracranial fluid pressure is not recommended. Anyone with these conditions must inquire with their medical Doctor prior to receiving treatment. CST was pioneered and developed by osteopathic physician John E. Upledger following extensive scientific studies from 1975 to 1983 at Michigan State University, where he served as a clinical researcher and Professor of Biomechanics. CST is a gentle, hands-on method of evaluating and enhancing the functioning of a physiological body system called the craniosacral system – comprised of the membranes and cerebrospinal fluid that surround and protect the brain and spinal cord. Using a soft touch generally no greater than 5 grams or about the weight of a nickel, practitioners release restrictions in the craniosacral system to improve the functioning of the central nervous system. For nearly 30 years, it has been shown to be effective for a wide range of medical problems associated with pain and loss of function. CST is useful both as a primary therapeutic method and in combination with other traditional or complementary techniques.