The Lowdown on Craniosacral Therapy: Q&A with Erin Oglesby

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of receiving my first-ever craniosacral therapy treatment. I went in not really knowing what to expect, what it was all about, or how it would make me feel. And I left delightfully relaxed, at ease, and totally blissed out. I also noticed a very sweet and welcome relief to the pesky hamstring injury I’ve had for over a year. I loved my session so much that I asked my amazing practitioner, Erin Oglesby, if she’d be willing to do a little Q&A so that you all can learn more about it too!  

She kindly agreed, and is generously offering YOU a 20% savings on a one-hour session with her. Just mention my name when you book with Erin. You can get a hold of her here: erin@erinoglesby.com. Thanks, Erin!

So, here’s the lowdown from Erin…

Thanks for taking the time to chat, Erin! Craniosacral Therapy is probably new to a lot of people, so let’s start with the basics. What is Craniosacral Therapy?

 Sure! Craniosacral Therapy is a gentle form of healing that involves light touch. It’s called “Craniosacral” because the work is centered around performing delicate manipulations on the bones of the head or “cranium” and lower spine or “sacrum”. I use the craniosacral rhythm as a guide to let me know where in the body the client is holding on to tension or trauma that needs to be released. Because that tension or trauma can be physical or emotional, I like to describe Craniosacral Therapy as a combination of energy work and body work.

 You mentioned a craniosacral rhythm. Can you explain more about that?

It’s the rhythm that the cerebrospinal fluid makes when it runs up and down the spine. Amazingly, this rhythm can be felt from any point in the body. So, when I’m working with my clients, I use the craniosacral rhythm to discover where there might be physical or energetic blockages in the body. If, for example, I can’t sense the rhythm somewhere, I know there’s a related blockage that needs to be released.

Another amazing and really interesting thing about this practice is that, as a practitioner, I can actually stop the rhythm by preventing it from flowing in or out of a certain area of the body. When the rhythm stops, deep release can occur. The nervous system relaxes, tension releases, and then when the rhythm starts to flow again, it’s often in a more balanced and harmonized way.

What can someone expect during their first session?

Well, first things first, you can expect to be lying fully clothed on a massage table, or something of that nature. You’ll be very comfortable and will likely lie on your back for most, if not the entire session. You’ll want to remove jewelry beforehand and I would recommend wearing loose and comfortable clothes.

Expect light touch and a deep sense of relaxation. It’s important to be aware that tension—emotional or physical—could arise, depending on what comes up for you and what is being released. This is all part of the process, but feel free to keep an open dialogue with your practitioner so that they can guide you and help you facilitate that release. Some people are so relaxed that they just drift off to sleep. Others like to engage with the practice a little bit more and notice different things that are coming up or going on for them, ask questions, etc. Really, this is a very personal experience, and chances are it will be different in every session.

My best piece of advice is to find a practitioner that you trust, and to go into the session with an open mind. From there, let the healing take over and do the work for you.

That’s great advice. Who can benefit from this kind of treatment?

Craniosacral Therapy can be beneficial for a so many people for so many different reasons. Traditionally it has been used to help people who suffer from headaches, migraines, TMJ, chronic pain, back pain, head, neck and shoulder tension.  But it has also been highly effective as part of a treatment plan for things like fibromyalgia, sleep disorders, arthritis and inflammation, anxiety, depression, trauma, PTSD, and can be very helpful during pregnancy, postpartum, and even for infants. It can also be beneficial for children with ADHD, autistism and behavioural and speech issues.

And, generally speaking, it offers a great sense of overall wellbeing, so it’s perfect for anyone who needs to create more space and ease in their body and their mind. For some people it can also be a spiritual and deep meditative experience. And because it’s such a gentle healing modality, it’s accessible to everyone including newborns, the elderly, chronic pain sufferers, those healing from trauma, surgery or any other delicate condition.

And how can people expect to feel after the session?

The post-session effects vary from person to person and session to session, but generally you can expect to feel very relaxed, maybe a little spacey, and you may want or need a little time for reflection. I usually recommend scheduling your session at a time when you won’t need to be rushing off to another appointment or meeting so that you can fully enjoy the relaxed and contemplative effects. Like many other healing modalities, the real results, though, come over time, so after a series of regular appointments people can expect a greater sense of overall and sustained ease, calmness and wellbeing, as well as relief from the many conditions we talked about earlier.

Thanks for your time, Erin! How can we learn more about you and your services?

My pleasure! I’m based in New York City and I practice in Chelsea and in Park Slope. Check out my website for more information, or email me at erin@erinoglesby.com. And I'd love to offer your readers a 20% discount on their first session. Just tell them to mention Julie Mae Weber when they book!

Like what you see? Click here to join my mailing list. I'll be in touch from time-to-time with healthy, helpful news and other tidbits.