Anyone practicing CST?

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cstbrian
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Anyone practicing CST?

Post by cstbrian » Sat Nov 10, 2007 8:35 am

I'm just curious how many others here are trained in and practice CranioSacral Therapy and what type of CST training you had (ie Upledger, Biodynamic, Milne).

You can view some of my info in my introduction here:
http://www.bodyworkonline.com/forum/vie ... hp?t=11166


Looking forward to hearing from others!
Brian
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Post by squash_blsm » Thu Nov 22, 2007 7:34 pm

Hi Brian,

I have CST 1 with Upledger.

I will probably take CST 2 in Jan.

But I do not practice CST on a regular basis in my sessions because I am an employee.

Cindy

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Post by MarionFM » Sat Nov 24, 2007 3:29 am

I am off to the 4 day CST1 seminar in a few minutes! I like John Barnes MFR, so I think this will be a good fit.

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Post by Vita » Sat Nov 24, 2007 5:36 am

I have CST1 and will be taking CST2 soon. I throw bits and pieces of it into many of my sessions. It's a nice compliment to the work I do, but my passion is still LDT.
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Post by WaltFritz » Sat Nov 24, 2007 6:17 am

I've taken CSTI, sandwiched in between MFRI and II years ago. I found?find the CST went into much greater depth than MFR teaching regarding the orientation and specifics of each cranial bone. CST instructors feel this is necessary, Barnes feels that it is not (due to the 3-D aspect of the entirety, that individual relationships become moot). I really did enjoy the CST class and still use aspects of it to this day.
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Post by PremoMT » Sat Nov 24, 2007 11:55 am

Well Brian,
Thank-you for starting a CST search! You were the only one I had seen on here that uses this modality specifically. It's good to know there are more out there.
I went to an intro course a few weekends ago hosted by Ken Dipersio, and am intrigued by the modality. I will most definatly be looking for the CST classes in the future. Sounds like Upledger is a favorite?
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Post by Blisss » Sat Nov 24, 2007 10:06 pm

Vita wrote:I have CST1 and will be taking CST2 soon. I throw bits and pieces of it into many of my sessions. It's a nice compliment to the work I do, but my passion is still LDT.
LDT is my passion as well! Once I complete the full series of Upldedger's LDT training (including the Brain curriculum with Dr. Bruno Chikly himself), I plan to take their Intro. to Craniosacral class. All of my LDT instructors have also been certified in Craniosacral; apparently they go very well together.
PremoMT wrote:Well Brian, Thank-you for starting a CST search! You were the only one I had seen on here that uses this modality specifically. It's good to know there are more out there.
LisaG is a BWOL member who specializes in Craniosacral therapy as well. She hasn't posted in a while, but she described transitioning to a specialized practice in this thread:
http://www.bodyworkonline.com/forum/vie ... hp?p=88080

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Post by JasonE » Sat Nov 24, 2007 10:07 pm

The main problem with acronyms is the confusion that may result across different disciplinary fields. :?:

I practice CST, but it's an exercise methodology named "Circular Strength Training" that complements the bodywork I do. For info on the CST that I practice, see my web site. It is thoroughly health-oriented, and helped inspire me to pursue bodywork as a career. :)
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Post by meryl » Sun Nov 25, 2007 7:19 am

Brian and All,

How timely this topic is for me, as just last week I completed my CST1 training with Upledger. As a matter of fact, Brian, I think it was you I was in discussion with about CST somemonths ago on another forum.

There were a number in my class who were taking CST1 for the second time, and one or 2 who were taking it for the third. I know I will have to take level 1 again before going on to level 2, because there was too much that went by me, and in speaking with a few in my training, they said how much more got out of the course by taking it again. A few said they had no idea how much they actually missed the first time around until they took it again.

I don't understnd some of the responses to your post tough, and these are the ones that say that they include some of the techniques in their treatments. From what I understood, the complete 10 step protocol has to be used for CST to be effective. If this is so, how can only some parts of CST and results still be obtained? I must be misunderstanding something somewhere along the line, and would appreciate clarrification if anyone can offer some.

I was most taken with SomatoEmotional Release, and would like very much to progress far enough to complete that training and take off in a new direction. Does anyone have experience with this?

Meryl

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Post by WaltFritz » Sun Nov 25, 2007 10:31 am

The 10 Step Protocol is the basis for learning via Upledger. You are to complete a certain number of these prior to taking CST II. It forces you to do the basic treatment on a large population, and can be viewed as one way to learn CST. Typically, once progresses in the Upledger cirriculum, you venture away from the 10 step and more into following the body. The logic of keeping you on a tight leash after taking CST I may become apparent later, if you continue on. I did not wear leashes well...

Other teachers are less rigid with the should's and shouldn'ts after taking the fisrt seminar. I guess it is a matter of style and preference. Protocols are very limiting, as it forces everyone into the same box. Traditional physical therapy pay homage to protocols, and it has hurt them in many ways. Evidenced based practice is typically a product of protocol based therapy, and we all know the limitations of trying to treat only from an EBP system.

Somato Emotional Release is Upledger's variant of Barnes' Unwinding, though both would steadfastly insist that they are greatly different...and superior. Both can be incredibly effective means of allowing a person to drop into the deeper levels of meaning and emotional holding patterns. Study with Upledger long enough, you will get very adept at SER. Study with Barnes, the Unwinding is where you will be comfortable. And...there is no reason why both cannot be a part of who you are.
Walt Fritz, PT Pain Relief Center, Rochester, NY
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Post by Blisss » Sun Nov 25, 2007 9:26 pm

meryl wrote: From what I understood, the complete 10 step protocol has to be used for CST to be effective. If this is so, how can only some parts of CST and results still be obtained?
I think any bodywork modality can be effective in small doses, as long as there is skill and intuition behind their application. For example, a full-body massage may be ideal, but a 15 minute chair massage can still work wonders. The same holds true for Craniosacral. I went through the Rolfing series this summer (as a client) & my Rolfer ended every session with 5-15 minutes of Craniosacral work. Even with that small dose, I could feel a shift in my craniosacral flow. I felt more balanced and free.
PremoMT wrote:I will most definitely be looking for the CST classes in the future. Sounds like Upledger is a favorite?
I've had wonderful experiences with Upledger myself for LDT training & would choose them first for CST. Especially since Upledger is founded & named after the "father" of CST, Dr. John Upledger. My Rolfer received CST training as part of his Rolfing education, and then many years later took CST1 from Upledger. He said he couldn't feel the flow until taking the Upledger class. It was their teaching method that helped him learn that subtle perception.

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Post by PremoMT » Mon Nov 26, 2007 8:23 am

Thanks for the info Bliss. By the way, speaking of acronyms, what does LDT stand for :?: Never heard that term previously...
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Post by Blisss » Mon Nov 26, 2007 9:07 am

PremoMT wrote:Thanks for the info Bliss. By the way, speaking of acronyms, what does LDT stand for :?: Never heard that term previously...
LDT = Lymph Drainage Therapy, specifically the technique developed by Dr. Bruno Chikly & taught through Upledger.

MLD = Manual Lymph Drainage, a slightly different lymphatic technique taught through the Vodder School.

Both techniques effectively work with the lymphatic system. LDT tends to be more intuitive (based on feeling the lymphatic flow) whereas the Vodder school doesn't believe the flow can be felt. One of the reasons LDT & CST go so well together, is that both techniques work with feeling & balancing the subtle fluid rhythms of the body.

I hope that helps!

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Post by PremoMT » Mon Nov 26, 2007 9:17 am

yes very much. Thank you!
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Post by cstbrian » Fri Nov 30, 2007 6:43 am

Hello everyone!

I have tried several times to reply, but every time something has come up and I’ve had to stop and log off. I am very happy to see so many responses to this post. After a week with no replies, I thought perhaps I was the only one here with any CST training. I thought, 'How odd is that to not have at least ONE other ...'
MarionFM wrote:I am off to the 4 day CST1 seminar in a few minutes!
I look forward to hearing about your experience. Feel free to ask any questions.
Meryl wrote:There were a number in my class who were taking CST1 for the second time, and one or 2 who were taking it for the third. I know I will have to take level 1 again before going on to level 2, because there was too much that went by me, and in speaking with a few in my training, they said how much more got out of the course by taking it again. A few said they had no idea how much they actually missed the first time around until they took it again.
I know many people who have taken classes 2 or 3 times. The re-take discount that Upledger offers is great. As a TA, I have sat through about 6 or 7 CSTI classes, 4 or 5 CSTII classes, an SERI, and next month an SERII. I love that every time I sit in on a class I understand the material in a new way. It’s also good to re-take the class with a different instructor if you can. It’s the same material, but each teacher has a slightly different approach to teaching.
Meryl wrote:I don't understand some of the responses to your post tough, and these are the ones that say that they include some of the techniques in their treatments. From what I understood, the complete 10 step protocol has to be used for CST to be effective. If this is so, how can only some parts of CST and results still be obtained? I must be misunderstanding something somewhere along the line, and would appreciate clarification if anyone can offer some.

There are a few reasons we stress using the entire 10-step protocol at this level.

The first is that when Dr. Upledger designed the 10-step he did so with the intent that anyone could do this work. When he was first teaching this, sometimes caregivers with no medical/bodywork background would take his ‘course’. He taught this work to parents, grandparents, and friends in addition to osteopaths, nurses, etc. So, he came up with the 10-step protocol so that the caregiver would have a nice, complete whole body session that addressed the major areas of transversely oriented fascia and the major components of the CS system. This is the 10-step that is still taught today (with some minor changes along the way). We still have non-medical/non-bodyworkers in the classes to learn to do this for a friend or family member.

Another reason for the protocol, as Walt briefly mentioned, is that it is a great learning tool to get to know and understand the basics of this work. Everything you do after CSTI will be based on your skill level and understanding of the CSTI material. Yes it is true that after CSTI the protocol goes out the window, but how would you learn/practice/assimilate/put together all the material from CSTI without a guide to help you do so. As a brief example when you go on to CSTII it is necessary that you be able to feel and evaluate the CSR at anytime anywhere on the body in a brief moment. You also need to be able to feel tissue release anywhere on the body no matter how subtle it might be. It has a lot to do with training your hands and proprioceptors to perform and fell more and more subtle work. In CSTII when you get into Sutherland’s sphenoid lesions or the mouthwork, you will often times be working with less than 5 grams of force to do very specific evaluation/treatment. So, it is key to your success that you are able to comfortably and confidently work at this level.

A third reason for giving a protocol is that we could not possibly teach everything about CranioSacral Therapy in one class. Each class builds upon the previous class. The 10-step protocol is designed in such a way that it ‘opens’ up the body in a systematic way from superficial (diaphragm releases) to deep (dural tube work); covering all the major areas of intersecting fascia in the body. In CSTII you begin to stray from ‘protocol’ because we teach techniques to specifically locate the underlying lesions in the body. These are called energy cysts and you will need all of the tools from CSTI and new tools from CSTII to fully release an energy cyst and its related fascial/dural restrictions. Because the 10-step covers all major fascial areas of the body and the CS system it gives a higher chance that (at this level) the therapist will work on one or several energy cysts and its related dural/fascial restrictions over the course of the protocol. It helps to increase the chances of having an effective treatment. It is why the 10-step by itself is a very effective treatment and people have such great results.

The 10-step also teaches you some basic do’s and don’ts that you will use throughout your CS work. As an example, you should always perform a thoracic diaphragm release before an OA release or any work with the cranium. Also it teaches us that to work with the dural tube (say in the lumbar area) that we must first free up the scrum to use as a bony handle to traction the dural tube. To do this, we might need to do a pelvic diaphragm release, an L5-S1 decompression and an ASIS medial compression. Then when the sacrum is free on all borders, we can get into the dural tube from this end. So, you can see how the ‘order’ of the 10-step teaches these basic guidelines.

These are a few of the main reasons why we stress practicing with the 10-step. We see a difference in CSTII in those who completed a lot of 10-steps versus those who did some. I recommend if you want to go on to CSTII that you do as many 10-step protocols as possible.

Now, with that being said, do you HAVE TO do an entire 10-step protocol? No. But think about what you are doing and why; and what needs to be done to be effective. Confused? Let me give an example.

A client comes in for regular massage. He/she has a history of migraines. You know from previous sessions that this client’s suboccipitals are like cement, in addition to a severe forward head posture. You explain/discuss CST but this client really loves his/her massage. No problem. You ask if perhaps during the massage you use just a few CST techniques that may help the migraines. He/she is fine with that. So when you get to working on the chest, neck, shoulders, and head (supine) you decide that an OA release would be perfect here. But, we know that we should do a thoracic release first; Especially on someone with a history of HA/migraines. So you simply incorporate it within the massage session.

There are many, many ways to add CST into a session without doing a full 10-step. Throw in still points throughout your session to deepen your client’s relaxation. Add a little Direction of Energy when you are working on “the bad knee”. Someone doesn’t like abdomen work done, but is clearly restricted in his/her breathing? Find out if it would be ok to work over the sheet with very light, very gentle techniques.

I know this is lengthy … and I could go on. But, I’ll stop here. I hope this has helped a bit. Please feel free to ask any other questions. I love talking about CST.

Brian
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Post by cstbrian » Fri Nov 30, 2007 7:16 am

WaltFritz wrote:Somato Emotional Release is Upledger's variant of Barnes' Unwinding, though both would steadfastly insist that they are greatly different...and superior. Both can be incredibly effective means of allowing a person to drop into the deeper levels of meaning and emotional holding patterns. Study with Upledger long enough, you will get very adept at SER. Study with Barnes, the Unwinding is where you will be comfortable. And...there is no reason why both cannot be a part of who you are.
I know nothing about Barnes' unwinding, but I would like to address how/why I believe SER to be very different. This is in no way to imply that SER is superior. Just different.

Dr. Upledger developed SER based on his work with biophysicist Dr. Zvi Karni in the late 70’s. The core of SER work is the release of energy cysts from the tissues of the body. While releasing these energy cysts the body may or may not need to move back into the position it was in when the injury was sustained. My assumption is that this is the part that looks like unwinding. However, the core intent of the work is the release of the energy cyst. While we may be following a limb, or the neck, or the entire body, our focus as therapists is on the CSR, and the energy cyst release. Tissue release will happen while we are monitoring this, but that is actually not our major focus.

The ‘emotional’ part comes into play because (as most of us probably believe) the body can retain emotions along with the physical trauma. (The body can actually create energy cysts from emotional trauma alone; but that’s a different post.) So while the energy cyst is being released the emotions associated with that energy cyst, if any, may surface as well. These emotions may be anger, rage, and fear and may illicit crying, yelling, etc. But they may also be joy, and happiness and the client may laugh or sing.

SER is a natural extension of CranioSacral Therapy. It is simply another tool in our tool belt. In SERI we teach some basic imagery and dialogue skills to help a client move through difficult emotions or to move through a place that he/she always gets ‘stuck’. It is important to note that we as the therapists do no ‘do’ SER to a client. The process is always initiated by the client and the client’s inner wisdom, and stems from working with an energy cyst. We are simply there to support the process and monitor what is happening with the energy cyst and the CSR.
Meryl wrote:I was most taken with SomatoEmotional Release, and would like very much to progress far enough to complete that training and take off in a new direction. Does anyone have experience with this?
Meryl, I have a fair amount of experience in SER both in private practice and as a TA/study group leader. What would you like to know?

Brian
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Post by MarionFM » Fri Nov 30, 2007 10:21 am

I thoroughly enjoyed the CST1 that I took last weekend. It was very interesting to re-learn many of the same techniques that I was taught in John Barnes MFR seminars but, as Walt says, from a slightly different angle.

One of the main reasons I wanted to go was to increase my proprioceptive skills - the CSR is subtle until you get used to feeling it - and I think my goals were met in that regard.

The CST1 course was much more left brain than a JB MFR seminar - lots of anatomy and explanation of technique - but I like having that background, and then move on to the feel of it. I found I was a bit distracted into wanting to go where my hands felt drawn rather than the specifics of the technique we were practicing - leashes don't work well on me either, Walt.

For those who have been to JB seminars, they will know what I mean when I say that it seemed very subdued not to have any unwinding in the practice times! On the other hand, I think that when JB gets people to quiet down in the practice times, and feel, it is perhaps more beneficial than the constant chatter of mutual feedback at the CST1 seminar.

Our instructor was excellent - four straight days of teaching and she never lost patience with stupid questions and often had us laughing. Anyway, she explained that the 10 step protocol gives you a tool to use that is relatively complete. She also said that we should feel free to use parts of the protocol as they fit into our regular massage or MFR or whatever we practice - once we feel confident in doing so. Obviously, some people are going to feel more confident than others in using parts of a new modality immediately.

I am already finding ways to incorporate techniques into my corporate chair massage or with my seniors, sometimes modified to accomodate the fact that they are in a wheelchair or a bed. Many of these appointments are only 15 minutes so there is no way one could do the whole 10 step protocol. They are working just great.

Of course, some techniques are designed to be done sequentially and would perhaps be less effective if taken out of context.

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Post by LisaG » Wed Dec 05, 2007 6:06 pm

Blisss wrote: LisaG is a BWOL member who specializes in Craniosacral therapy as well. She hasn't posted in a while, but she described transitioning to a specialized practice in this thread:
http://www.bodyworkonline.com/forum/vie ... hp?p=88080
I'm here :)
Bliss wrote: Especially since Upledger is founded & named after the "father" of CST, Dr. John Upledger.
Just to clarify this a bit. Dr. John has certainly done a LOT to bring CST to the mainstream and out of the realm of just DOs. That said, there's a bit of a misperception that Dr. John is the father of CST, when in fact he's really carried forward concepts that were developed before him. What I was originally taught was that CST includes the fluid and the membranes whereas Cranial Osteopathy focuses just on the bones. Not quite right.

The true father of CST is William Sutherland, DO. He was a student of Andrew Taylor Still the father of osteopathy. While Sutherland practiced what he came to call Cranial Osteopathy, he was by no means a bone cruncher. He was well aware of the membranes and the fluids - he developed concepts such as the reciprocal tension membrane, the "tide" (CSF), etc. His wife Ada Sutherland wrote a wonderful biography of him called With Thinking Fingers. He really was quite remarkable.

Another major contributor to cranial work is Rollin Becker, DO. He was a student of Sutherland's and the two of them became good friends. Becker's writings have been compiled in 2 books Stillness in Life and Life in Motion. I highly recommend both. One of them contains letters that Becker and Sutherland wrote to each other about different patients and theories they had. It really broadened my appreciation for the history of this work.

This url has some interesting quotes of Sutherland and Becker and Still. They really were far ahead of their time.

It's great to see so many people practicing CST. Oh, and for what it's worth regarding Barnes vs. Upledger - at one time they were in business together (back in the early days). Two alpha males couldn't quite make it work ;) . So it would make sense that there is some overlap and some differentiation between the two.

When I took MFR I many moons ago Barnes was insistent that you had to have skin on skin contact in order to do a sacral release or any other of the 10 step techniques. He said otherwise you were just releasing their underwear. Curious if he's still of this mindset. I can say I've experienced many a release without skin on skin contact.

Lisa
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Re: Anyone practicing CST?

Post by JLWmassage » Thu Feb 03, 2011 6:56 pm

I have just started my formal training with the Bodywork education project

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Post by WaltFritz » Thu Feb 03, 2011 7:16 pm

LisaG wrote:
When I took MFR I many moons ago Barnes was insistent that you had to have skin on skin contact in order to do a sacral release or any other of the 10 step techniques. He said otherwise you were just releasing their underwear. Curious if he's still of this mindset. I can say I've experienced many a release without skin on skin contact.

Lisa
Last I heard he was still saying this. I've worked with many people OVER the clothes for a sacral release with just as much success. I prefer skin on skin, but there are many reasons why can and would work with the skin.

Rules made by a teacher often are more about them than the work. Break some rules; conquer new ground.
Last edited by WaltFritz on Fri Feb 04, 2011 7:35 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Anyone practicing CST?

Post by JasonE » Thu Feb 03, 2011 11:08 pm

Break some rules; conquer new ground.


Gold!!!! Thank you for posting this!
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Re: Anyone practicing CST?

Post by MarionFM » Fri Feb 04, 2011 8:58 pm

:iagree:

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Re: Anyone practicing CST?

Post by LisaG » Sun Feb 06, 2011 7:11 pm

Break some rules; conquer new ground.
Love this! Imagine where we'd be if no one had done this ;)
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Re: Anyone practicing CST?

Post by JLWmassage » Wed Mar 30, 2011 3:56 am

I just had my first client unwind on the table. I wasn't able to get through the 10 steps because her body just want to unwind.

I was a pretty amazing session for me to see the body just let go of years of junk :grin:

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Re: Anyone practicing CST?

Post by WaltFritz » Wed Mar 30, 2011 5:39 am

At the recent Advanced Foundations in Myofascial Release Seminar in Tucson, AZ, I had a chance to teach my version of global cranial releases. While not exactly groundbreaking, I often work with more global compressive techniques, identifying the restrictions through feel and gently compressing until the restriction diminishes. It is completely at odds with the bone/joint decompression that is the basis of most CST. It is fun to experiment with options.
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