CranioSacral Therapy

CranioSacral Therapy (CST) is a gentle yet powerful, light touch, full-body health care approach which helps relieve many symptoms of illness, pain, and dysfunction. Dr. John Upledger, D.O., did 40 years of extensive research, with many doctors and scientists, on the CranioSacral system, it's rhythm, and the effects on the system, with this gentle yet powerful work. He made the work teachable and over 150,000 therapist across the world have been trained in CST.


What is SomatoEmotional Release?

Somato-Emotional Release (SER) is one of Dr. Upledger's therapeutic processes that a more sensitive and advanced therapist uses and expands on the principles of CranioSacral Therapy. It helps rid the mind and body of the residual effects of past trauma and negative emotional experiences. SER has been shown to be very effective in releasing suppressed emotions that may be inhibiting complete structural releases. This is a very gentle process using encouragement; never any force.



History of CranioSacral Therapy

In the 1970’s American Osteopath Dr. John Upledger observed the distinct, rhythmic movement of the tissues surrounding the brain and spinal cord during surgery on a patient’s neck. Curious as to whether the movement in this tissue had previously been investigated, he discovered the work of William Sutherland, who developed Cranial Osteopathy around 1900. Sutherland’s research also found this Cranial Rhythm, and pressure applied to different skull bones, caused different symptoms in the body.

Dr. Upledger’s subsequent years of research in this field led to the evolution of many highly effective healing techniques. In collaboration with a team of scientists at Michigan State University, he was able to understand and scientifically demonstrate some of the key aspects of cranial work. He also found that many issues previously believed to be confined to the head can in fact have primary causes elsewhere in the body.

In 1985 Dr. Upledger established The Upledger Institute, a clinical and educational resource center in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. He called his work “CranioSacral Therapy”, developed a highly effective seminar series, and since then over 100,000 healthcare professionals around the globe have studied the therapeutic value of working on the craniosacral system.

In his 40 years of research, Dr. Upledger has written many books, one of which is a helpful introductory volume for the layperson, “Your Inner Physician and You”.

Click here for Upledger's case studies, research, and more information.


Anatomy of CranioSacral Therapy

The craniosacral system surrounds the entire brain and spinal cord. It is comprised of the 3 layers of the meninges and the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). The body creates this clear water-looking fluid by filtering blood in the center of the brain, circulating it around the brain and spinal cord through the meninges, down to the lumbar area, and reabsorbing it back into the blood through one of the layers of the meninges. It has been found to have its own unique rhythm, about 6-10 cycles per minute, called “the Cranial Rhythm.” (Similar to how the ocean moves.)

Your body is made mostly of water and connective tissues. This cranial rhythm moves (ripples) through the connective tissues, all the way to the toes. Nancy uses this rhythm, feels where it is not flowing normally, and then gently works the restrictions in that area. The connective tissues (fascia) surround every little thing, looking like cotton candy, all ultimately connecting to the tissues around the brain & spine. An injury anywhere in the body can affect the CranioSacral system, causing a multitude of problems. During a treatment, the entire body is addressed, not just the head and low back, as some may think with the name “CranioSacral Therapy.”

It’s ALL connected!

No massage lotions are used, so the client remains clothed.  (Please dress comfortably!)


Effective for a multitude of things, including:

  • Migraines, Chronic Headaches
  • Chronic Neck and Back Pain
  • Whiplash, Accidents, Traumatic Falls
  • Stress and Tension-related Problems
  • Temporomandibular Joint (Jaw) Dysfunction (TMJD)
  • Brain and Spinal Cord Trauma
  • Learning and Emotional Disabilities
  • Emotional Stress & Distress
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  • Scoliosis and Orthopedic Problems
  • Pain from Surgeries and Soft-Tissue Trauma
  • Infantile Disorders i.e. Colic, Ear Infections, Torticollis, etc. (See Pediatrics) 
  • Many Other Conditions