Cranial Osteopathy

Our Cranial Osteopaths

Fiona Passey ND, DO
Julien Prosnier BSc (Hons) Ost

What is Cranial Osteopathy?

Cranial OsteopathyCranial Osteopathy is a refined and subtle type of treatment that encourages the release of stresses and tensions throughout the body, including the head.

It is based on a number of findings about the body’s subtle physiology, such as the intrinsic ability of the body to heal itself and self-regulate. This ability expresses itself as the intrinsic mobility of all parts of the body. Restrictions in this mobility may affect the mechanisms of self-regulation and produce symptoms.

It is a gentle and yet extremely effective approach that may be used to treat a wide range of conditions in people of all ages, from birth to old age.

Cranial osteopaths are trained to feel a very subtle, rhythmical shape change that is present in all body tissues. This is called Involuntary Motion or the Cranial Rhythm. The movement is of very small amplitude; therefore it takes practitioners with a very finely developed sense of touch to feel it. This rhythm was first described in the early 1900's by Dr. William G. Sutherland and its existence was confirmed in a series of laboratory tests in the 1960's and '70's.Tension in the body disrupts the cranial rhythm.

Practitioners compare what your rhythm is doing to what they consider ideal. This shows them what stresses and strains your body is under at present, and what tensions it may be carrying as a result of its past history. It also gives them an insight into the overall condition of your body, for example if it is healthy, or stressed and tired.

In response to physical trauma or emotional stress, the body’s tissues react. Any stresses, strains and tensions which remain in the body may affect its functions and give rise to problems over time. The effects can be both physical and emotional. This therapy provides an opportunity for the body to let go of its restrictive patterns and return to a normal mode of functioning.

The Craniosacral System

The craniosacral system consists of the membranes and fluid that surround and support the brain and spinal cord. It extends from the bones of the head (cranium) down to the bones at the base of the spine (sacrum).
The fluid within the membranes is continuously draining and refilling. The filling and draining creates gentle, rhythmic, expanding and contracting movements that can be felt anywhere in the body by the trained therapist. These movements are the craniosacral rhythm. They occur at a rate of about six to twelve complete cycles per minute.

The therapist gains valuable information about where the body would most benefit from change by monitoring the craniosacral rhythm. The source of pain isn't always obvious.

Cranial Osteopathy is helpful for people of all ages

Accumulation of stress and strain in the body
When we experience physical or emotional stresses our body tissues tend to tighten up. The body may have been able to adapt to these effects at the time, but a lasting strain often remains. Any tensions which remain held in the body can restrict its free movement. Gradually the body may find it more and more difficult to cope with accumulated stresses and symptoms may develop.

While it can be highly effective at relieving symptoms cranial osteopathy aims to treat the whole person not just the condition, so a very wide range of situations may benefit from treatment. These may include back and neck pain; joint pain and minor sports injuries; stress tension relief, digestive problems; and more.

Cranial Osteopathy is effective for a wide range of medical problems associated with pain and dysfunction.
It can help with the following:

  • Acute and Chronic Neck and Back Pain
  • Stress and Tension-Related Problems
  • Inability to relax
  • Fibromyalgia and other Connective-Tissue Disorders
  • Joint pains
  • Muscle tension and Spasms
  • Rheumatic pain (Rheumatism)
  • Digestion problems
  • Minor sports injuries


Babies and Children

For information on Osteopathy for babies follow this link: Osteopathy for babies and children
If you are not sure whether a problem is suitable for osteopathic treatment, please call us and we will be happy to discuss your needs.


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