The Facts about Craniosacral Therapy & Why It’s Foundational to Your Health
by Mary-Elizabeth Schurrer
Having pursued a career in wellness that exposed me to a diverse range of holistic modalities, I assumed that my understanding of what the human body needs in order to thrive was more than sufficient. That is, until I experienced Craniosacral Therapy for the first time––and realized just how restorative and beneficial this mode of treatment is for physical, mental, emotional or even spiritual well-being.
Pioneered and developed in the 1970s by osteopathic surgeon and clinical researcher Dr. John Upledger, this non-invasive whole body technique engages our innate physiological capacities to reorganize and recover from varied traumas or tensions. Our biological structure is a self-healing organism that, when adequately supported, can return itself to homeostasis (balance) regardless of where the issue originated. And that support is accessible through the medium of Craniosacral Therapy.
This gentle approach to bodywork addresses connective tissue called fascia that bonds together an entire network of muscles, organs, bones and joints. When injuries or dysfunctions occur, that fascia becomes impaired and restricts the energy-flow our bodies need to function at optimum level. Damaged fascia can exacerbate various conditions like migraines, chronic pain, fatigue, limited mobility, decreased focus, temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ) and neurological issues like fibromyalgia, encephalitis (inflammation of the brain), strokes, concussions and Parkinson’s Disease, among others.
And that’s where Craniosacral Therapy begins to work its profound, transformational benefits. During the first couple minutes of my session with local practitioner Terrence Grywinski, who has performed Craniosacral Therapy for two decades, I learned that shortened fascia in my shoulder had compromised the range-of-motion in my pelvis, caused an asymmetrical length in my legs, contributed to pressure along my neck and spine, constricted the airflow of my diaphragm and created barriers in multiple chakras (energy centers). But as our session unfolded, I was astonished at the immediate results achieved through his subtle, precise and relaxing touch.
As Grywinski manipulated the fascia encasing my shoulder in both deliberate and delicate movements, I sensed a palpable release that deepened my breathing, assuaged both physical and mental stressors, and invigorated my entire being. Grywinski describes the experience as a common denominator for all his clients, attributing this to our bodies’ interconnected framework. Traumas aren’t contained within a specific area but dispersed throughout our systems––and likewise, healing isn’t relegated to a specific area either.
Case in point: the mended fascia in my shoulder restored range-of-motion in the pelvis and symmetry in both legs to emphasize a couple of the manifold improvements after just one session. As a dedicated runner and fitness enthusiast whose body is accustomed to strain and exertion, I’ve since noticed how fluid my running stride has become now that each leg is back in alignment, and those hipbones are no longer askew. In addition, my lung volume has increased, allowing for a more even and natural pattern of breath.
Before the introduction to Craniosacral Therapy, I didn’t even recognize how much tension and dysfunction existed inside this body of mine. I considered “wellness” a benchmark I had already attained. But now, having gleaned firsthand knowledge of the impact that Craniosacral Therapy can deliver on muscles, bones, joints, organs and chakras––not to mention, the fascia, of course––my definition of holistic health is expanding, and I eagerly anticipate the upcoming sessions I’ve scheduled with Grywinski to continue this healing trajectory we’ve just begun.
Terrence Grywinski has been studying and practicing Craniosacral Therapy for 20 years. He is also the founder and owner of Advanced Craniosacral Therapy, located at 1188 N Tamiami Trail, Suite 205-D, Sarasota. To schedule a free 30-minute new client evaluation and treatment, call 941-321-8757. For more information, visit ADVCST.com.
Mary-Elizabeth Schurrer is the Managing Editor of Natural Awakenings Sarasota–Manatee. She also works as a freelance writer, blogger and social media marketer based in Southwest Florida. Her personal blog HealthBeAHippie.Wordpress.com features practical tips for embracing an active, nutritious and empowered lifestyle.