What exactly do you do ?

Cranio is a gentle hands on therapy which goes very deep, I mainly work on the Nervous System (brain spinal cord) Organs Soft Tissue Fascia Fluids Cranial and Pelvic bones. While doing this I am also tracking what we call the Craniosacral Rhythm (CSR).


What is the Craniosacral Rhythm?

We can measure using instruments our Blood Pressure, Respirations Heart Rate but to date we can only measure the CSR by palpating with our hands. Cerebrospinal fluid surrounds the brain and travels down the spinal cord  and returns back up towards head   this is one cycle    while this cycle occurs it sends out a gentle wave across the body and recedes again    not unlike a tide at sea. Therapists are trained to feel this wave   and ideally it should happen 6-12 cycles per minute, and should be felt on any part of the body in an even strong way.  If it is not felt at a particular site or is weaker this would indicate a problem  where we then employ our release techniques to restore the rhythm to its optimum. Surgeons have observed the “wave” while doing spinal /neck surgery and it has been recorded on instruments scientifically in a lab, however the Medical professionals disregard the importance of the Craniosacral system indeed don’t recognise it as a system.  We would also suscribe to the idea of the cranial and pelvic bones having a degree of motion which if restricted can have a devastating effect on the body over time. Most Medical people state that once the skull bones are fused that is the fontanelles(soft spots on baby’s head)have closed over the cranial bones cant move thereafter.

What is Fascia?

Fascia is the ” CLINGFILM”  within our bodies. It surrounds everything from the smallest nerve to the biggest bone organs, brain spinal cord, and soft tissue. It is extremely thick in places  thin in others. It supports and joins structures together directly and indirectly. It is also our shock absorber for physical or emotional trauma .

Have you ever cut the fat of meat or taken the skin of a breast of chicken and you have this opaque tissue that comes off with the fat  its stretchable   this is fascia.

Surgeons cut through it to get to an organ  e.g. appendix    and sew it back up again . Imagine getting a piece of clingfilm from the roll but as it often does when you hurry it gets crumpled up and can become hard and unpliable   we can throw that piece away and start again    unfortunately we can’t do that with our own clingfilm (fascia)  which is where a Craniosacral Therapist comes in handy (excuse the pun) we can smooth out your fascia  so that whatever is under that particular sheath can work much better   its comfortable in its layer. The medical system would be governed by the fact that the nervous system rules the body and the way it operates and reacts   we go one step further we apply the thought that because fascia covers all aspects of the nervous system  we need the fascia to be smooth pliable and resilient for the nervous system to work efficiently.

Over time our bodies can take many assaults  that can get trapped in the fascia,  the fascia will compensate and take the brunt but eventually it starts to lose its strength and elasticticity and structures become weaker,  the structures under the fascia becomes uncomfortable thus leading to  dis-ease.Things become harder, our inherent flexibility and energy to be well  becomes impaired. Our nervous system becomes less tolerant of stress being put on it  our bodily systems become impaired  remember fascia governs the nervous system  the nervous system governs how all our systems work.

How many sessions do I need?

At the risk of sounding cliche   how many sessions you need really depends on the person    I have seen and worked on people who were severely compromised  respond in just a few sessions  actually gain relief from pain and increase their mobility  immune resistance  and overall health   and sometimes it can take much longer for others.   Alot depends on the person’s motivation to be well and their inherent energy  to proceed with life and all that it can throw at them . It also depends on how regular someone comes for sessions .  I initially suggest that the client experience at least 3-4 sessions and then we evaluate  . It should be noted that babies and children respond much quicker for the simple reason that they haven’t had as much time for trauma stress and disease to take hold   they are usually on the surface thus easier to release.

What’s your background?

DSCF0659-001Trained in Cregg House Sligo  1983-1986  Nursing diploma in Intellectual Disability. Worked with the HSE from 1986-1991.  Joined Western Care Association a Voluntary Organisation for people with special needs in Co Mayo 1991-2000.  Was Head of Day Centre for 7yrs and finally moved to Ballina to open a new Respite Service for Adults .  While with Western Care I took part in intense Training in  Positive Programming for Challenging Behaviours,  Augmentative Systems of Communication for people with Autism,and worked closely with the multi disciplinary team in Assessment , formulating personal plans  implementation of these plans and regular evaluation.

In 1999 I had a baby girl called Jenny,who at 3months was diagnosed with Torticollis  Scoliosis and Developemental delay.  She required intensive therapy so I made the decision to take a year out  as we would be travelling to many medical appointments.The prognosis for Jenny even at that early stage was poor.  She was brought to Physiotherapy twice a week for weeks   it was a screaming match with limited improvement . Decided there had to be other options and went googling as any Parent does to find that extra bit of help for their Child, and came across CranioSacral Therapy. We attended regular sessions with an experienced Therapist in Co Clare and although the sessions could range from high pitched crying to deep relaxation I knew instinctively something positive was occuring for Jenny .  She never reacted to the Therapist the way she did when going for Physio  she was encouraged to vocally express and release  and she began to progress in every way. When I saw the positive changes in Jenny I decided to find out about training and the rest as they say is history.I trained with the Upleger Group and then intensively with Jim Green of Acorn Seminars U.S.A. from 2005-2009.  I now enjoy a busy and varied clinic and also use my training from past employment quite a bit also .  I can honestly say that I have great job satisfaction I love my work  and that it is an honour and privilege to have worked on all the people I have to date.



What conditions does Craniosacral Therapy help?

As already discussed therapists work on fascia which wraps the Nervous System and because the Nervous System is what powers the body, fascia connects to every structure within the body. Craniosacral therapy in relation to fascia can effect change in any part of the body. It is important to note here that therapists follow the client’s response, we do not push through, manipulate, adjust bones or hurry the process along, we always go at the clients pace.

Common conditions I see and help with are migraine, back pain, digestive disorders, breathing disorders, stress and I also do a lot of work with babies on a variety of disorders including colic, reflux, sleeplessness, poor sucking, delayed milestones and malabsorbtion.

Craniosacral therapy can have benefits during pregnancy, pre and post operative conditions, learning and sensory disabilities,autistic spectrum disorders, stress and sleeplessness.