Cranio Sacral Therapist and Student Newsletter 34

May 25 – 2008

Questions and comments for this issue:

+ The interweb thingy.
+ Twitter.
+ Book recommendation from Renee in Australia.
+ Comment from Etienne in Belgium.
+ Comment from Joyaa in Australia.
+ Comment from Eva in Australia.
+ Question about contact pressure and effectiveness.
+ Question about intracranial hypertension.


Very Important Breaking news: Russia won the
Eurovision song contest.  Personally I think
Israel should have won but you decide for
yourself and let me know.

If teaching new mothers how to make nutritious
meals for their new babies sounds like a good
idea to you then have a look here
and if you like what you see then make a
contribution and help Rene, who is also a cranio
sacral therapist as you will see below, get the
project off the ground.

I obviously think it is worthwhile having
already put my money where my mouth is.
A-har!! and I didn’t even mean that pun.

I want to ask a question. Now I don’t want you
to get anxious but it’s about the internet.

Are you on it?

While you are thinking about that let me tell
you some things about my practice.

1. EVERYONE who comes to see me comes from the
2. I don’t do ANY other advertising.
3. Currently my waiting list is 6 weeks long.
4. I charge more than most natural
therapists in Ireland. [It was the same in
5. If you search for cranio sacral therapy in
Ireland or Australia on Google my website
will be in the top ten.
6. When I moved to Ireland I was able to set up
my practice from scratch with no drop in
patients or income all because of the way I
use the internet.

I’m not telling you the above to blow my own
trumpet, you don’t want to hear that racket once I
get started, no I’m telling you to highlight how
powerful the internet is.

Now back to my question.  Are you on the
internet?  If not, is that because your practice is
as big as you would like it to be thank you very
much or because the internet is a complex and scary

If you are on the internet, are you getting the
sorts of results you want?

It has been my experience that, with a few
exceptions, most cranio sacral therapists are not
very computer friendly.

Well let me correct that they are friendly to
their computers, if they own one, they just don’t
feel like their computers are very friendly towards

How to create a successful website that actually
gets the sort of people you want to treat to call
you and then get that site to the top of the google
ranking is a big subject and not something I am
going to go into here.

I am thinking of putting together a special
training on the subject so if you’re interested let
me know.  Whether I do it or not will very much be
determined by the level of interest.

Something you can do right now for free is get
yourself on TWITTER.


Without getting too technical, Twitter is what
is called a ‘micro-blogging’ platform.

And no that’s not a kiddies toilet step.

On Twitter, users post short updates about what
they’re up to.  (Max. 140 characters. So it’s short
and to the point.)

When I first heard about Twitter I didn’t really
get it.

It just seemed like a load of back and forth
‘chat’ between people.  My initial thought was, ‘I
don’t have time for this.’

But not being one to allow good sense to stand
in the way of having a go, I dived in.

Within a week it really started to dawn on me
how deceptively powerful Twitter was.

And you don’t have to be sitting in front of
your computer to use it, you can post from your
cellphone.  That’s one of the things I really like
about it.

Because Twitter posts happen so fast (i.e.
someone could witness an event and instantly post
about it from their phone) it’s becoming a valuable
source for REAL-TIME information.

The typhoon in Burma and the earthquake in China
come to mind immediately.

Here’s a story that illustrates how powerful it
can me.  James Buck, a graduate student in
journalism from the University of California-
Berkeley was arrested last month in Mahalla, Egypt
while covering an anti-government protest.

Thinking quickly, James was able to send a one-
word Twitter update: ‘Arrested.’

The people who were following him on Twitter in
Egypt and the US reacted by contacting the
university and the consulate on his behalf.  Before
long, James was updating Twitter with another one-
word message, ‘Free.’

Twitter is also becoming a powerful ‘crowd
sourcing’ tool.

Someone can post to Twitter and ask ‘What’s the
best digital camera for under $400?’ and in a
matter  of minutes have tons of replies from other
people giving great feedback and advice.

This is one of the ways it can be useful to you
and your practice as the number of people who talk
about their health and emotional life is huge.

You can use twitter to grow your practice by
specifically searching for and connecting with
people in your country, area or city.

You do this by ‘following’ which simply means
letting Twitter know you would like to be informed
whenever the particular person posts a comment.
Most people will reciprocate and in turn ‘follow’

Some of the more popular people on Twitter have
10,000’s of people following them.

Think about that for a minute in relation to
your practice.  You could let 1000’s of people know
if you were moving offices or had a particularly
successful case or were giving a talk.

You can also use Twitter to connect with other
cranio sacral therapists around the world.  This
means that should you need to refer someone to a
therapist in another country or city you will have
someone you know.  I have already been asked for
referrals like this a few times.  As you connect
with more cranio sacral therapists, they too will
refer to you.

Okay so here’s what to do.

Go here and get yourself
an account.  It’s free and quick and takes about 3
minutes.   Make sure you include ‘cranio sacral
therapist’ or  ‘cranio sacral student’ in your bio,
which is also limited to 140 characters.

If you want to get an idea of what sort of
things I twitter about you can look at my Twitter
page here.

If you want to ‘follow’ me, and I encourage you to
and any other cranio sacral therapist you can find
on twitter, make sure you click ‘Follow’ under my

Once you do that you will be notified whenever I
make a Twitter post.  I will ‘Follow’ you back.

If the whole thing makes no sense to you just
try it for a week.  I found it took about that long
for me to get into it and to know what was worth
posting about.


Now, lots of response to the last newsletter,
so let’s get on with the mailbag.


Hi John,
I love reading your newsletters whenever you send
them.  I have been reading this book which is
absolutely phenomenal.  And I would just like to
share it with the cranio community:

The Secret Teachings of Plants In The Direct
Perception of Nature by Stephen Harrod Buhner.

It is a really revolutionary book that has been
around for a while so maybe many people already
know about it.  Stephen looks into the energies
coming from our hearts and how our hearts
communicate with every other thing on earth.
Plants is where he starts and speaks about how
aboriginal peoples have been able to learn from
plants themselves what and how they can be used to
heal people through this vibrationary language.  As
the book progresses he speaks of how we can use
this heart awareness to communicate with each other
and to learn the nature of disease and discomfort
within each other.

He calls this depth diagnosis, and reading his
discriptions of his work it sounds just like
cranio.  I just love the language he uses, the
extensive quotes from Goethe and other Earth poets.
I haven’t finished reading the book yet and I wish
I could describe it better, but I highly recommend
it to everyone…

On a different note maybe I have missed some of
your newsletters as well, but I was really excited
reading about the village in SA and your comments
on Open Source Cranio.  I would really love to hear
more about that in your newsletters.  My mother
works in Burma as a teacher trainer for
kindergarden and upwards kids.  I believe
craniosacral therapy could be so helpful in that
environment when the population is under such
stress, repression and poverty.

Thanks again for the great work you are doing.



Thanks for passing it on Renee.  I haven’t read
the book myself so can’t comment.  From what I do
know of it you may also like Connie Grauds work.


Hi John,
I guess more Dr’s and scientists need a stroke.


That is so naughty – hilarious but very naughty.


Hi John & Greetings from Queensland!
Re. Karen & Orthodontics, I thought that I might
add a couple of points?
1. “Underdeveloped maxillae” (that’s the key
phrase) are not uncommon, and are seen a lot in
persistent mouth breathers.
2. More progressive orthodontists tend to use
expanders (sometimes maxillary alone, sometime with
mandibular expanders too).  Breaking the mandible
to try to reduce its size may be going the wrong
way aobut things (as you suggested).
3. There are progressive dentists and good
orthodontists in Oz.  Whereabouts is Karen based?

Love, Joyaa


Hello Joyaa and thanks for your comments.
I never found much credence in the
underdeveloped maxillae – mouth breather
theory/approach myself.

I haven’t come across an underdeveloped maxillae
yet.  When there is a problem it is because they
are compressed posteriorly or superiorly or
medially or all three.  The compression coming from
trauma of some kind or another.

I’m not a big fan of expanders either because
they are usually too tight and elicit a defensive
response from the maxillae locking them down.


Hello John,

I have a case story that really shows how easy it
can be to work with the teeth and bones they attach

I treated my niece when she was 10 years old. She
had sucked her thumb until the age of 8, so her
front teeth (both upper and lower) were standing
out at a pretty sharp angle.

The orthodontist had of course said she would need
braces.  She had some acute neck, back and pelvic
problems and I only had the possibility to give her
2 sessions with about 2 weeks in between, so the
focus was not on fixing the teeth.  But I worked on
the teeth and face for a bit any way in these two

I worked individually with all the teeth as well as
the associated structures in the face (maxillae,
incisors, mandible, temporals, TMJ, vomer,
palatines etc).  The front teeth really needed some
serious unwinding.

I saw her next one year later and her teeth had
nearly completely straightened out. They only
needed a tiny bit more adjustment.

I have since worked with a few other children,
mostly early teens, as well as my own daughter who
is 7 and busy shedding teeth and the new big ones
coming out with not enough space for them, causing
them to come out crooked.

They straighten out very easily, especially while
they are still growing.  I must say I find teeth
very cooperative to work with.

Best regards,

Central Coast


Hi there. Was searching for someone to ask some
questions to about CST and found you. Thanks. I
have my two levels in CST. I totally love doing it
on clients but feel guilty in a way because of the
fact that they get up after looking at me like I
haven’t done anything for the past hour to them. I
always try to explain that they probably won’t feel
anything but that things are occuring within their
bodies. There is another therapist at my place of
work who has been doing CST for a few years now and
she does her treatments SOOO different. She uses so
much force it is like a massage and I actually was
sore the next day. So when one of her clients came
to me on Monday she left feeling confused because
she told me how different my session was from the
other person’s so although I explained that how I
do it is what I was taught I began to doubt myself
that I wasn’t doing things correctly.

I sometimes have a difficult time feeling the
diaphragm releases happening in clients. Will this
just come with more practice?

Also I don’t know what this is about but when I am
working on the cranium alot of times their heads
will start to move around in circles or back and
forth. Is this releasing or what is happening? I
just try to go with what I feel and don’t second
guess myself.

But I really can’t say I have had anyone feel any
change after a session. Can you give me any advice.
Thanks for your time.
Regards, Lorraine


Hello Lorraine,
It’s hard for me to answer your question because
I don’t know where you are training or what stage
you are at in your training.   So bear that in mind
as I answer your questions.

With regard to how much pressure to apply, it
shouldn’t feel as strong as a massage.  Sometimes
in the releasing process the therapist may have to
hold against a lot of pressure but that doesn’t
happen too often.

Far be it from me to pass judgement on the other
‘cranio sacral therapist’ in your practice but from
what you have written it sounds like they either
had poor or insufficient training or more likely
they weren’t properly assessed, if at all.

It would probably be wise to avoid sharing
patients and if you do, you would need to make it
very clear to the patients that you both have very
different styles.

Now to the diaphragms.
The transverse diaphragms are not easy to feel
because they are, . . . well. . . big.   Compared
to some of the finer work we can be involved in,
the size of the diaphragms can be daunting and too
big to hold in your intention.

You may find it easier to think of them
individually rather than as a group.

They each have a different quality and the more
familiar you are with the quality of each, the
easier it will be for you to feel releases as they

If you can’t hold the whole diaphragm in your
intention do it in two halves.  Do one side first
and then the other.  Aim to hold as much of the
diaphragm in your intention as you can as you work
on one side or the other.

Over time you will be able to hold more and more
of the diaphragm in your intention until eventually
you can hold the whole diaphragm.

Heads moving around in circles?
Yes it can happen but if it’s happening for you
with everyone then there’s a good chance that it’s
your stuff.

In fact you can pretty much apply that to
everything you find in ‘everyone’, if you know what
I mean.


What I mean is if you find the same thing going
on in everyone you would need to take a good look
at what is going on for yourself. Chances are it
will be your stuff.

As to people not feeling different after a
session. If they are getting better I wouldn’t be
concerned about it.

I have found that people will only give you a
hard time about the things you expect them to give
you a hard time about.

So if you are concerned that people are going to
feel like you are not doing anything, because they
can’t feel it, then they will probably have that

On the other hand if you are saying that the
people you are treating are not improving at all,
well that’s a different kettle of much more serious
It’s serious because people getting better is
kind of the whole point.

You will need specific help with this. You will
need to go to your trainer or mentor and get them
to assess you.

Get them to tune in as you are working. They
should be able to give you specific feedback about
how you are working, what your intention is like
and so on.

Don’t take it personally if they suggest having
some treatment yourself.  It can often sort out
obstacles in training.


Hi John,

Liane from Australia. I am a physiotherapist
working in a new position with chronic pain
clients.  Could you please give any experience you
have had with this condition: intracranial
hypertension. This lady has had 2 labours, (2
caesarians with 2 epidurals). Symptomology came on
following childbirth.  She is very overweight,
looks to have a thyroid disorder.

I look forwards to your insights and advice,

Yours sincerely,



Hello Liane,
Let direct you to this case history about an
overweight woman with intracranial hypertension I
treated in Brisbane a number of years back.

As well as the intracranial membranes you may
also want to look closely at the dural tube around
the lumbro-sacral junction and her pelvis

The 2 caesareans and epidurals could have left
patterns of trauma that are causing or exacerbating
the intracranial hypertension.

Cheerio for now.

Till the next time.

Your Mate,

John D.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *