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About Cranioga

Cranioga is a gentle form of hands on therapy which encourages the body to move beyond patterns of discomfort, overwhelm and trauma and it is beneficial for all cohorts of society.

 

 It is a bodywork therapy designed to enhance the functioning of the tissues,

fluids and inherent potential deeply seated at the core of everyones body.

"Cranioga is not just another hybrid distortion of yoga attempting to appeal to the contemporary memes of modern minds. Neither is it intended to be a didactic process blinkered by the confines of ‘orthodox yoga’. It is, however, a genuine inquiry of relevant contact and resource, which serve to catalyse the expression of  health, awareness and insight. The mind often requires excuses to keep it occupied (focused) whilst being able to appreciate the passing nature of one's tendencies and habits. When the mind is tamed and sharpened, in this manner, it will start to illuminate the existence of subtle intentions (patterns) residing in the body. If unnoticed these patterns can cause tension but when 'realised' provide release and vitality.

A great ocean of health is waiting to express itself and all it requires is the presence of experienced contact and the empowerment of resources which help to sustain and deepen this health expression.

 

Cranioga is a form of restorative yoga helping to re-access the awareness of subtle sensations in the body.

The therapist is taught to access and embody seven fundamental therapist specific qualities for themselves and the client. These are: 1) Learning how to touch into the earth to help ground oneself and help to ground another. 2) Learning to establish a felt-sense of the body fluids in ones self and another. 3) Noticing the subtle transmutation which occurs when tendencies, identification, memories and expectations (T.I/ME) are surrendered to their nature of 'passing' rather than the minds repetition of them. The felt-sense of this passing is here called "potency". 4) Developing an ability to be aware of the inherent inclination the body has to return to balance when given the 'ingredients'. 5) Realising that felt-sense space is energy and potential rather than conceptual emptiness....it is indeed empty of T.I/ME but it is full of vibrant vitality and potential. 6) Realisation that when there is a felt-sense of T.I/ME passing there is also a relational field of understanding which is no longer limited by the confines of separation based thinking. This is here called "Insight". 7) Letting the permeation of insight develop the felt-sense of wholeness whilst acknowledging the practical necessity of being able to isolate and identify. This aspect tends to also re-access our awareness of an embryonic intelligence.

The resourced and insightful Cranioga therapist will be able to approach the client in order to help them also resource in this way. However, depending on the condition of the clients body-mind it is relevant to incorporate  seven client specific stages of application before . These stages are: 1) Assessment 2) Reasoned pacing 3) Sensation awareness 4) Postural balancing 5) Breath-work  6) Neurogenic release and 7) Pran-ayama . These are key aspects of the process which promote and encourage a sense of embodiment, rather than dissociation, and engender insight.

The assessment process is an in-depth aspect of this therapy and  will require in house tuition to cover it fully. But it is suffice to say that the main part of the assessment is to establish the presenting nature of the clients autonomic nervous system and how it effects the body-mind and vice-versa.  

 

The method of accessing sensation awareness can vary from initial visualisation, to tapping relevant areas of the body, to becoming aware of the stimulation caused by air touching the skin when breathing without effort. Other forms of promoting sensation awareness involve the expression of various emotional gestures, for example, those mimicking openness or friendship etc. 

The postures are adopted to help address asymmetries caused by autonomic nervous system imbalance and are incorporated with physiologic reasoning rather than needing to obsessively mimic a pose from a text book or to try and look cool.

 

Breath-work helps to increase embodiment, sensitivity and the willingness to let go. A presentation of neurogenic release generally takes over from the breath-work which is where the body no longer needs to be controlled by subconscious tendencies based on protection and restraint. 

Preparing the body-mind with breath-work and encouraging spontaneous neurogenic release are the ultimate prerequisites for the access attention called  pran-ayama. This is awareness of the natural breath, i.e. without control, and the body sensations which are unveiled during such awareness (pratyahara). 

Once a client has become familiar with pran-ayama, or any other relevant attention which provides a sense of the body’s natural expressions, then relational touch can be of optimal benefit for the client."

Patterns:

The therapy acknowledges the inherent potential of the body, the intelligence that heals from the inside. This intelligence can sometimes get caught in patterns of stress, overwhelm and trauma and can require help to re-establish it’s nature of expressing health.

In other words, patterns of resistance can interfere with the expression of this intelligence, causing imbalance and even altered cell formation, which in time can create physiologic disorder. Fortunately there is usually potential to re-establish this innate organising force.

 

Physiologic Intelligence:

The Cranioga therapy approach promotes the ‘digestion’ of life’s undigested experiences by facilitating the body’s natural fluid expressions and adjustments to take place.

These are the same expressions of health which keep the heart beating and help the autonomic physiology of the body to be in tune and function optimally.

It is an approach, therefore, which gently facilitates body reintegration.

"Under the weight of a heavy snowfall, pine branches break off. But by bending, the willow can drop its burden and spring up again"  

Chuang Tzu

Trauma:

The therapy incorporates a method of working with trauma processes. The  embodied experience, touch and presence the therapist are key components in creating a relational field which generates a deep sense of safety and a capacity to heal from within, in a client led and paced approach.

Animate physiology thrives in a relational field which provides the body with the sense that it is okay to let go of protective holding patterns and move beyond previous habits of dissociation.

Progression: When a clients body has reclaimed balance the renewed vitality and presence is ready to be optimally conjoined with day to day life interactions and rest.

Occasionally, however, after receiving treatment in sessions a client might feel a volition to learn more about this therapy and in order to obtain skills to share with others. In that instance we offer periodic training. These are associated trainings called Cranioga and Body Intelligence.

Pacific Association of Craniosacral Therapists
Body Intelligence

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