What is Craniosacral Therapy?

Few structures have as much influence over the body’s ability to function as the brain and spinal cord that make up the central nervous system. And, few systems have as much impact on the central nervous system as the craniosacral system. 

Extending from the bones of the skull, face and mouth down to the sacrum and tailbone, the craniosacral system consists of the membranes, bones and and fluids that surround, protect and nourish your brain and spinal cord. These fluids run through all of your connective tissue, delivering nutrients from the blood and removing toxins from your brain. 

The role of this system is so vital that even the slightest imbalance or dysfunction within it can cause sensory, motor and/or neurological problems of all kinds. 

By encouraging movement of cerebrospinal fluid --the life-giving water of your spine and brain--CST creates the conditions for your body’s natural healing mechanisms to dissipate the negative effects of stress and trauma.  

This scientific and intuitive approach to total well-being is not a “cure”, it is a catalyst--encouraging the body to self-regulate and heal itself.

"Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all of the barriers within yourself that you have built against it."  - Rumi



A typical session lasts for 60 -90 minutes.

Though 45 minutes can work well for babies and young children, adults and teenagers require at least an hour for their process.

Checks, cash, and credit cards are accepted. Cancellations must be made within 24 hours.

How Does Craniosacral Therapy Work? 

Like your cardiovascular or circulatory system, your craniosacral system  follows a rhythm. It’s pulse, though more subtle and difficult to feel, is as tangible as your heart rate.

Similar to how a cardiologist might investigate the heart or the lungs, a craniosacral practitioner focuses on the cranial bones, spine and sacrum. By applying a light touch to the bones and fascia of these areas, the practitioner can monitor the rhythm of the cerebrospinal fluid in order to pinpoint the source of an obstruction or stress.

Once a source has been determined, the therapist assists the natural movement of the fluid and related soft tissues to help the body self-correct. Light touch is often all it takes to remove a restriction around the central nervous system. Other times, CST can be combined with complementary therapies to help restore the body to its optimum level of functioning.

Though a physical practice, there is an energetic and intuitive component to CST. It takes presence and deep listening for the practitioner to follow the client's body and allow it to show where the restrictions need to be released.

Also, because it works along the spine, CST follows the pulse of energy that flows between the head and pelvic area. In ancient meditation and healing, this same area houses our Chakra system—a line of energy centers that are focal points in the health and vitality of the mind, spirit and subtle body.

What Can You Expect During a Typical Craniosacral Session?

In a CST session you are fully clothed, reclining on a massage table in a quiet and private setting. Treatment typically lasts one hour to 90 minutes. During this time, I sit or stand positioned at your head, torso or feet. Using a 5 gram touch—the weight of a nickel—I palpate your body to monitor the rhythm of the fluid that is flowing around your central nervous system.

By carefully listening with the hands, I am able to locate areas of weak fluid flow or tissue motion, tracing them to the original source of the dysfunction. I then support those areas to release restrictions.

What you experience during a CST session is highly individual. Some say they feel deeply relaxed and grounded, while others describe feeling unwinding sensations as the body releases tension. You may even recall circumstances surrounding a past trauma or injury that caused your body stress. While it doesn’t occur in every session, this aspect of the process is perfectly normal, and helps the body reverse dysfunction and restore optimal levels of mobility and health.

Because each individual response to CST is unique, the number of sessions needed to resolve any particular condition varies widely.  While one session may give you the relief you need, your situation may require more therapy before it’s completely alleviated.


Who Benefits from Craniosacral Therapy?

CST is corrective and preventative.

From chronic pain, ear infections, jaw pain, migraines, and joint stiffness to anxiety, coordination impairments and anger: by normalizing the environment around the brain and spinal cord and enhancing the body’s ability to self-correct, CranioSacral Therapy is able to alleviate a wide variety of dysfunction.  

Regardless of pain, CST a gentle and effective preventive health measure. Just like a car needs an oil change on a regular basis, every single body benefits from regular balancing of the CranioSacral system.

Regardless of what brought them to CST, many of my clients come to sessions on a regular basis over the years, maintaining their balance and growth on all levels.

They do this because they sleep better, have stronger immune systems, experience a lessening of tension, feel freer from depression and anxiety, and appreciate an overall sense of clarity and ease.

What to Expect After Your First Craniosacral Therapy Session

After your CranioSacral Therapy session you may feel relaxed, refreshed, tired or just “different”.  Your body goes through a lot of internal change, letting go of old patterning and integrating new healthier patterning.  It is a lot of work for your body, even though it may not appear that way from the outside.  Listen to your body and rest if you need to.

Please drink plenty of water after your session (water that has been boiled and allowed to cool down is optimal, as it is more easily absorbed into your system).  This helps your body to flush out toxins that have been freed up during your session. 

Do not do strenuous exercise or activity after your session.  Your body needs time and space to integrate the changes that occurred during your session, and if you do vigorous exercise your body uses it’s energy for that instead of for integrating the changes from your session.

For the next couple of days your body will continue to process changes from your session.  Be aware that emotions may come up more freely or unexpectedly.  Sometimes a new layer of awareness comes to the surface and old symptoms may be stirred up.  Things come to the surface for healing.  So again, rest if needed and continue to drink plenty of water.  Take your time with any big decisions that can wait.

Over the next few days, you may wish to give yourself 10-20 minutes each day to “listen to your body” or even to make this a daily practice. The “Breathing Practice” on my website may be helpful to you.

If your baby or child has received treatment, remember that their sleeping patterns may change for a day or two.  They may feel tired.  Like an adult, they are processing and can feel more emotional.

Feel free to call with any questions.

Mindful breath is essential to Craniosacral Therapy. Read more about breathing practice here in my helpful guide: