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Welcome to the Homepage of the Craniosacral Therapy Group

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Craniosacral Therapy (CST) is a manual therapy where the use of special therapeutic touch is thought to encourage structural and physiological rebalancing using the body’s own healing energy.

CST recognises the importance and interdependence of the cranial bones, sacrum & pelvis with the  membranes surrounding the brain and spinal cord, the central nervous system and the fluctuating cerebro-spinal fluid which bathes the nervous tissue.  These structures are understood by craniosacral therapists to form a central core to the body which influences and responds to the structure and function of all the body tissues.

It is believed that the body’s structural make-up and physiological function interact with thoughts, emotions and spirituality; together shaping the person. It is thought that attitudes, behaviour, habits and emotional responses contribute to how the body is held in physical shape and posture, which would affect how the body moves. Any condition manifesting as pain, stiffness or dysfunction also contains emotional, behavioural and other components that could be addressed during the application of Craniosacral Therapy.

What is it like to receive Craniosacral Therapy?

The Craniosacral Therapist will initially undertake a thorough case history with the client and also an appropriate physical examination but will then ‘listen’ respectfully through his/her hands to the body’s inherent movements. This therapeutic touch pays deep attention to the patient in such a way that much information is gathered about what appear to be places of restriction, congestion and compensation. With the same touch, structural and physiological change is encouraged.

The hands ‘receive’ rather than actively ‘do’.

What Conditions are Suitable for Treatment with Craniosacral Therapy?

This treatment is suitable for acute or chronic conditions and babies, children or older people. Craniosacral Therapy can be the treatment approach of choice in longstanding and complex pain situations and where there has been a poor response to conventional techniques.

Approach of the Craniosacral Therapist

Using a very light touch the therapist’s hands both receive information and deliver the therapeutic input. The Craniosacral Therapist has:

developed enhanced sensitivity through their hands and through their whole body

learnt to be able to place his/her attention in any of the body’s systems and is able to sense restriction within the membranes or fascia; the joints; bones or muscles; in the viscera; in the nervous system or within the fluid system etc.

learnt how to gain a non-judgmental impression of the body’s own healing capacity and inner intelligence in this way

It is thought that this creates an opportunity for the body to use its inherent energy to create shift and change. Craniosacral Therapy may therefore help to restore the mind/body connection by providing an opportunity for increased self-awareness and acknowledgment of bodily sensation

What are the Advantages of Using Craniosacral Therapy?

The nature of the manual touch of the Craniosacral Therapist is gentle, non-invasive and perceptive. This approach may allow the body to recognise its own restrictions so it can re-organise by influencing basic biomechanical processes and secondary adaptive changes - the inner cause is addressed rather than the outer manifestation of disorder. Craniosacral Therapy Treatment may help the person:

re-connect with their body sensation

acknowledge their needs                        

Craniosacral therapists learn specialised skills which may be used for the safe release of shock and trauma and for the treatment of young babies and children.

Recent Research

A recently published work by Nicola Brough (see reference); has received high recognition by Warwick University and it is understood that further research on a suitable outcome measure for craniosacral therapy is currently being carried out by the same individual

Exploring clients’ experiences of craniosacral therapy: A qualitative study (2012)

Nicola Brough (1) Sarah Stewart-Brown (1) Antje Lindenmeyer (1) Jill Thistlethwaite (2) George Lewith (3)

1 Warwick Medical School, University of Warwick, Coventry CV4 7AL, United Kingdom

2 The University of Queensland, School of Medicine, 288 Herston Rd, Herston, Qld 4006, Australia

3 Complementary and Integrated Medicine Research Unit, Primary Care and Population Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of Southampton, Aldermoor Health Centre, Aldermoor Close, Southampton SO16 5ST,United Kingdom

E-mail address: nicola@nicolabrough.com

Contact the Craniosacral Therapy Group

For further information about the Craniosacral Therapy Group please contact: Karen Elsworth - Craniosacral Therapy Group Liaison Officer for ACPEM



Are we credible or just incredible?!1-day study day

with Nicola Brough (RCST, BCST, MPhil)

  Saturday 3rd October 2015 in Chedworth Village Hall.

Nicola is currently a doctoral candidate based at Warwick Medical School, practising complementary medicine for over 14 years, working, among other things, as a craniosacral therapist.

This will be a day of theory and practical learning, looking at current CST literature, Nicola’s published paper and her research so far on a therapy specific outcome measure for Craniosacral Therapy with Q&A.


Nicola is in the process of developing a therapy specific measure for CST based on the findings of her qualitative study. 


Opportunities to be involved in the current research study

She is looking for some practitioners to offer some feedback on the draft measure in the format of a focus group and will also be asking if some people who may be interested in being part of a focus/testing group for the further development of this valuable tool which will form part of her PhD thesis.


It would involve us looking at a form prior to the meeting, making some comments on a feedback form and been willing to discuss it during the group session.  The session would be audio taped and the data collected would be used for analysis as part of the research process.



Nicola Brough. MPhil, RCST, BCST, RMT, ITMC

Nicola undertook her training at the Southern School of Natural Therapies in Melbourne, Australia and at the Karuna Institute in Devon, UK.  She is qualified in numerous therapies including Bowen therapy, reflexology, reiki and craniosacral therapy.  She has experience of working with adults and families with complex needs.  Nicola has an MPhil from the University of Warwick since undertaking a qualitative study in 2012.  Recent publication includes "Perspectives on the effects and mechanisms of CST: A qualitative study of users' views" Brough et al. (2014) European Journal of Integrated Medicine, DOI: 10.1016/j.eujim.2014.10.003.

Contact: Email: n.brough@warwick.ac.uk or visit www.nicolabrough.com Tel: 07960 46853

Course information:

This course is arranged by the CSTG (Craniosacral Therapy Group (a special interest group of physiotherapists))

Where: It takes place in the idyllic Chedworth Village Hall, Fields Road, Chedworth, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire GL54 4NQ, Drive: 2 1/2 hr from London. Accessible from M5, M4 and M40. Near Bristol Airport and Cheltenham Station. 

Breakfast and lunch is included. There are no local shops nearby.

When: Breakfast 9.00. Course start: 9.30 - finish 17.00.

Price: £60 for members (CSTG) and £75 for non-members. Food is included for all.

This course counts towards CPD with 6 hrs learning (includes practicals).

For more information please contact: sueteague1@hotmail.com


study day report 2014


September 2014 Penny's Letter to Members

Dear CSTG Member

It’s a beautiful mild autumn week here in the Scottish Borders and I am taking this opportunity to bring you up to date with some developments within our committee structure and to pass on some news of our activities.

First of all – after 5 years ‘at the helm’ initially as Chair of CTACP and then working as Liaison Officer when we became the Craniosacral Therapy Group within ACPEM – I have this year decided to hang up my hat and say goodbye to committee work. I have found working as a committee member a satisfying extension to my growing experience as a Craniosacral Therapist and also in my explorations around the links between physiotherapy and craniosacral therapy

I am now within two years of reaching the end of my seventh decade (!) and I decided this year to relinquish my CSP registration and to focus on my craniosacral therapy work for a few years – so it really does feel like a semi-retirement! However I do have sufficient interest from my client base to enjoy my craniosacral therapy work and to continue developing my therapy work with animals

My decision to stand down has meant that our committee is smaller! We are now working to share committee tasks suitably amongst everyone who remains:

Karen Elsworth has stepped in  to liaise between CSTG and ACPEM at ACPEM committee meetings – our grateful thanks Karen! Cas Boddham-Whetham has been invited to speak to physiotherapy students in Birmingham – a great opportunity – and she continues to take on the role of Membership secretary. Sue Teague has played a valuable role as Treasurer. Other committee members are Anne Stevens and Myra Baston and everyone plays a part in planning and organising our annual Study Day. Other committee tasks include maintaining an internet ‘presence’ – both on the ACPEM website and also in the development of our own CSTG website; raising awareness of CST and keeping in touch with developments in research into CST.

We continue to hope that all members of CSTG take an interest in the committee’s work and lend their support and encouragement even in just a small way – an occasional contribution would be much valued!

As a registered member of the Craniosacral Therapy Association (CSTA) I have been particularly encouraged by the work of Nicola Brough who has been sponsored by the CSTA to carry out research work and who has been awarded an MPhil and a Chancellor’s Scholarship by Warwick University.  Details of her published work can be supplied on request

As I leave the committee I want to applaud their stalwart work – the majority having soldiered on for many years!! – and wish the continued success of CSTG




CRANIOSEXUAL DYNAMICS - (An Introduction) - For Craniosacral Therapy graduates only

Saturday 11 October 2014

In Craniosacral therapy, many issues are covered; but sex may still be an uncomfortable topic for many clients and even therapists to talk about. Yet many people have issues that might be of sexual nature, and they might need to be resolved in order for life to be the most fulfilling that it can be. Unresolved issues can have an effect on mental and physical health, yet we are not trained to listen out for and deal with these dynamics.

• Have you ever had a sense you were dealing with sexual issues, and  struggled processing these with your client?

• Have you heard about Chakras and Tantra and wondered what it is? 

• Would you like to be more confident and knowledgeable with regards to matters relating to sexual health?

Here is a great opportunity to start learning more about the anatomy and chemistry involved within our sexual health. We will provide a safe space for you to start to develop an understanding of sexual energy from a Tantric perspective, allowing transformation and healing to take place in a therapeutic context. This is an introductory course to explore new ideas. 

In order for healing to take place in your clients they need to feel safe and accepted. If you don't feel comfortable about the subject your clients are likely to sense your resistance to it and avoid sharing any sexual issues with you. By opening your perceptual field towards sexual energy you are expanding your awareness on the subject.

This one day course will be a mix of theory and practice. Dress comfortably as there will be some practical exercises (dancing, meditation) as well as session work on the couch.

Tutors: Anne and Tania are both experienced craniosacral therapists(CTET) with a common interest in tantra. They are starting the conversation about sexual health and healing in the craniosacral world, to open a new field to 'listen out for'.

Tânia Gallindo - Studied at C.T.E.T.  finishing her course in 2007 prior to that she studied Shiatsu and have specialised in pregnancy, babies and children. She runs a Craniosacral Therapy clinic for Mothers Babies and Children in Wimbledon. She is originally from Brazil where she studied drama and Physical theatre. In the past 3 years she has been training with various Tantra teachers and is at the moment attending a year course focusing on awakening women's sexuality. The course is based in Tantra, Taoism, and psychology process work .

Anne Stevens - Studied at CTET, graduating in 2004, followed by 2 seasons as an assistant tutor at the same institute, and for the last 5 years she has taught A&P at CTET. Anne is a physiotherapist, qualified in Denmark in 1994, and moved to UK in 1996. She started work as a physiotherapist in the NHS and has for the last 14 years worked in the private sector.  She is interested in how the energies felt in Tantra relates to the energies felt as a craniosacral therapist. 




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