Beth Stoller, Licensed Massage Therapist

Integrative Holistic Healing

Benefits of CranioSacral Therapy

CranioSacral Therapy



A Gentle Touch

 In craniosacral work, the subtle art of precise and gentle touch is applied to correct imbalances in the fluid and membranes surrounding and protecting the brain and spinal cord.

Craniosacral therapy is based on a particular understanding of human anatomy. Imagine your craniosacral system has a regular rhythm, much like the heart, only subtler and slower. Just as your heart pumps needed blood to the rest of the body, the craniosacral system pumps important fluid–cerebrospinal fluid (CSF)–between your brain and spinal area.

The CSF plays several important roles in your immune system’s performance. These include offering protective covering for your delicate brain tissue, delivering glucose (a type of sugar that nurtures and cools the brain) to the cortex brain, inhibiting viruses and bacteria in the brain, and forming a transport medium between the blood and the brain. CSF has a big job to do, but a variety of health problems can create an imbalance in the flow of the CSF, limiting health and clarity. If CSF can flow unimpeded, then the body has the opportunity to maintain and/or restore balance.

Proper performance of the craniosacral system and its fluids is essential to the entire central nervous system, which is a network of specialized tissue that controls the actions and reactions internal to the body, and the body’s adjustment to its environment. The crazier your environment, the harder it has to work. The two main components of this system are the brain and the spinal cord. Think of your brain as a computer and the spinal cord as the cable. The spinal cord links the computer’s input and output to the rest of the body. Remarkably, your entire motor function, learning patterns, and emotions are affected by the craniosacral system, as your whole body expands and contracts with the rhythm of the pumping fluids. This is where craniosacral therapy can improve the functioning of these essential self-healing systems.

Think of your craniosacral practitioner as your partner. You and your body do the work, but your practitioner lends his or her knowledge and skills to help you. Together you are able to bolster your body’s own resistance and improve how your central nervous system responds to stress and illness. When soft touch is applied to this system, clients can achieve incredible releases from long-standing restrictions, stress, and tension.

Craniosacral therapy achieves not only relief from physical pain, but also restoration of clarity and emotional wholeness as well.

What to Expect

During a craniosacral session, the space will be devoid of distractions. In my practice, I refer to this as the “sacred space,” because I strive to embody the philosophy that time and space are special, unique, quiet, and restful. I ask questions to try and understand what health concerns you may have. This is a critical part of the healing process because craniosacral therapy offers many techniques that can be directly customized to your needs. By having a conversation first, we can work together to find the best option for healing.Next, you lie on a traditional massage table,and then I begin to apply a slight amount of pressure (about the weight of a nickel) to the craniosacral system. A precise, gentle touch to areas such as the brain, spine, or other parts of the body, along with intuition, perception, and intention come into play here and I use these gifts to direct me to go to those places needing the most attention. Once the body is in a relaxed state, of letting go, craniosacral therapy has the ability to heal on a cellular level. The body knows this, that is, every cell in the body will remember the connection with the forces of healing, and the more the body remembers those forces of healing, the more it can allow itself to heal. For example, if you’ve had a stiff neck in the past due to stress, it is likely next time you have stress, your neck will get stiff again. The cells in your body remember and now equate stress with a stiff neck. This same “cellular memory” can be achieved in a similar, but positive, way by giving the body–and the central nervous system–an extreme and wonderful experience of deep and often profound relaxation through craniosacral therapy. The more the body remembers this natural state, the more it can allow itself to heal.

By the time you leave your session, you will most likely feel relaxed, refreshed, and re-energized. Some clients even report “a reawakening of power” as the body, mind, and heart find their own profound medicine.

The Stillness

Most of us have mastered the art of “doing” in our crazy, activity-filled world, but “being” is actually tougher, much more rewarding, and is truly a gift. Lao Tzu, the prolific sixth-century B.C.E. philosopher, said, “The source of all great movement lies in stillness.” I’ve often been awed by what the body can do when we give in to the stillness–when we slow down enough for the body to respond positively to its own healing ability.

While craniosacral therapy is a complementary practice, I also view it as a spiritual practice. Now, more than ever before, we are witnessing a return to healing that encompasses the totality and wholeness of the body, mind, spirit, and psyche. We are paying more attention to what we eat, we are looking for alternatives to drugs, and we are stopping to think for a moment before we make that call to the doctor. We are flexing the muscles of a deeper consciousness as we strive to experience what it means to live a healthy and authentic life. In many ways, we are reaching out to the spiritual roots of our healing. By tapping into our inner healer, craniosacral therapy helps us get there.

I have personally treated the following conditions successfully:

Sleep Disorders/Insomnia


Muscle and Joint Pain

Migraine Headaches

Brain dysfunction..such as Brain Fog, Memory Loss, Poor Concentration



Digestive Disorders

Numbness and Tingling

What are Restrictions?

Restrictions are areas of holding that limit full expression of your divine blueprint for balance, health, and wholeness.  If left unattended, they will eventually manifest on the physical level as a loss of vitality and function in the area of the restriction, and often in other parts of the body as well.  Restrictions can be caused in a variety of ways:  physical, mental, emotional, chemical, hormonal, etc.  What may start out as a restriction in energetic flow can eventually show up on the physical level as a sticky place in the fascia, the continuous sheet of connective tissue which encases every structure in the body.  The cranial rhythm will have a different quality in an area where it is not fully expressed.  The Cranio-Sacral practitioner tunes in to the client's innate cranial rhythm, and can then identify places where the innate rhythm could be more fully expressed, and assist the client in the process of moving into fuller expression of their Cranial rhythm and their Spirit, resulting in greater health and vitality on all levels.

Release Comes Naturally

Your body has an innate healing ability, and is always seeking to restore you to vitality and wholeness.  Often, your body releases a restriction as soon as the practitioner brings awareness to the area.  Simply holding the awareness of your body's innate cranial rhythm invites your body to more fully express that rhythm in every part of your being.  After a session, release and integration may continue for a few hours or several days, and it's good to give yourself time to integrate the changes you've made.

  • Deep sense of relaxation and inner harmony.
  • Calm the nervousness system and release those inner tensions within the connective tissues that can impact optimal organ function and general well-being.
  • Release deep emotional patterns that have been held unnoticed or unresolved for many years. Releasing these cellular memories often bring about profound and lasting changes - physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually.
  • During and after a session, people often report a deep sense of calm yet feel energised with an increased clarity of mind and general well-being. A feeling of being re-connected and whole.
  • Maintain that inner balance.

The practitioner is trained to put their hands on very specific locations on your body like your head and feet, so she can find where you have restrictions that are affecting the CNS.  Then she uses very gentle stretching techniques to release those restrictions. It is so subtle that you may not even notice when she’s doing it.  It is not a massage, but clients often say it is even more relaxing


What Can I Expect From A CranioSacral Therapy Session?

Sessions last 90minutes. In a serene setting, the client lays fully clothed (comfortable clothing…gym clothes) facing up on the massage table. The practitioner will stand or sit positioned at various points of your head, torso or feet. At times your practitioner may also support your limbs and spine while helping your body release accumulated tension.

What you experience during a CST session is highly individual. Some people say they feel deeply relaxed, while others describe other sensations, such as unwinding 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 – called Somato Emotional Release® – is perfectly normal, and helps the body reverse dysfunction and restore optimal levels of mobility.

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. Your therapist can best advise you in this area.

What Will I Experience After A Session?

Just as each individual experiences CST sessions differently, the results can be diverse as well. You may leave in such a relaxed state that you feel like sleeping for hours.. If this is the case for you, it is important to honor your body, and not do strenuous activity.  Or you may leave full of boundless energy. You may feel a decrease in pain or an increase in function immediately after the session, or the effects may develop gradually over the next few days.

Since CST helps the body resume its natural healing processes, it’s common for your improvements to continue weeks after the session. You may also experience a reorganization phase as your body releases previously held patterns and adapts to a new state of wellness.

Are There Any Conditions That Should Not Be Addressed With CranioSacral Therapy?

There are a few situations in which CST is not recommended. They include any condition in which slight variations in intracranial pressure would cause instability, such as: acute aneurysm, recent skull fracture, cerebral hemorrhage, any severe bleeding disorder. If you have any questions about whether these situations apply to you, seek the advice of your physician before receiving a CST session.

CranioSacral can virtually improve most every dysfunction in the body. You are welcome to have free consultation with me for you to decide whether this would be a suitable therapy for you.

Beth Stoller




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