Feel the rhythm
...the craniosacral rhythm that is!
The last four days of my leave was spent doing a Craniosacral Therapy (CST) course with a lovely group of practitioners - Physios, OTs, Remedial massage therapists and Kinesiologists all coming together to learn this wonderful therapy. Many of you have already experienced a bit of CST with me as I learnt some techniques in my Kinesiology training. It comes up so often in clinic that I decided I needed to know more about how it is working as well as more techniques which is exactly what I got from the course.
One of the main aims of CST is to release any restrictions that are affecting the flow of cerebrospinal fluid - that's the filtered blood that flows around the brain and spinal cord. The restrictions could be to do with the bones and joints of the skull - yes your skull has joints in it - the image below shows the skull when looking down on top of it. The darkened wiggly lines are the joints between the bones!
Or there could be a fascial restriction which is then compressing or pulling on the membranes that hold the cerebrospinal fluid around the spinal cord and around the brain.
CST uses very gentle techniques to help the bones, joints and fascia release allowing for an expansion/contraction type movement of the cerebrospinal fluid and all the membranes within the skull and around the spinal cord.
It's an amazingly "light touch" technique but you can feel so much movement going on, it's incredible. The teacher joked that when you watch someone do CST it's like watching paint dry - it looks like nothing is happening - but for the practitioner and client it's like a party is going on in the bones and tissues! Very cool...well cool if you're a nerd like me :)
So what can CST help with? Well nearly anything really as it affects the brain and spinal cord aka the central nervous system but some typical issues related to craniosacral dysfunction are:
Headache and migraine
Chronic back and neck pain
General musculoskeletal pain
Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) dysfunction
Central Nervous System disorders
Fibromyalgia/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Neurovascular and Immune disorders
Stress and tension related problems
I'm already integrating the techniques into your Kinesiology sessions so feel free to ask me about it if you have any questions :)
If you're a practitioner have a look at the Upledger Institute website for information on courses.