Years before becoming a bodyworker, MaryAnn received craniosacral therapy regularly for several years after logically concluding that since she had experienced both cranial and sacral injuries in a car accident, this modality would likely be of benefit, and, hey, maybe it would help with trauma recovery too.
Although she didn’t understand how this sometimes-subtle practice worked, she would ask herself after each session what was different.
What she noticed was her sense of being calmer and more centered, of being less reactive and more resilient. Over those three years, the regular sessions were cumulative and revitalizing.
One session in particular allowed her to experience relaxation at a deeper level than she could ever recall experiencing.
This led her to wonder how relaxed she could possibly become while awake and substance-free, which became a mission that involved practicing and studying meditation.
Her nervous system loved it. Her whole being loved it — healing occurs in a relaxed state.
Her practitioner was highly experienced in biomechanical (also known as Upledger-style) craniosacral therapy techniques and was also at that time training in Biodynamics.
MaryAnn went to massage school with no intention of becoming a craniosacral therapist, although she was curious about it and took a short intro course in biomechanical CST.
While practicing on a fellow student, she became aware of a flood of sensations coming into her hands but had no idea what it meant.
Six months later, a chance encounter with a stranger gazing at a mysterious bone* led to a conversation in which she first learned about Biodynamics, an older form of craniosacral therapy.
After telling him about her previous experience with CST, he asked her, “Why aren’t you a craniosacral therapist?” She did not have an answer. She began her first Biodynamics training three days later.
MaryAnn studied craniosacral therapy with Ryan Hallford from 2013 to 2018, taking (and later serving as a teaching assistant for) six Biodynamics courses and two biomechanics courses. The latter is where she was introduced to the skilled intraoral work she uses in her TMJ Relief sessions. She has since trained with a Canadian teacher, John Corry, in TMJ mastery and with the Upledger Institute in intraoral work.
(*The bone was a sphenoid, and synchronistically, the man — David Harel, now in Florida — shared an office suite with MaryAnn’s former practitioner, Nina Davis, and had taken the same Biodynamics training with her. In the way that the world is sometimes small and full of synchronicity, MaryAnn now works in David’s former office, sharing a suite with other craniosacral therapists, Christian Current and Liz Baker.)
Curious about the biomechanical style, MaryAnn began taking courses from the Upledger Institute in 2016. She’s since served as a teaching assistant for Upledger as well.
What’s the difference?
Both types of craniosacral therapy originated with the same man, osteopath William Garner Sutherland, who first explored the craniosacral system (the bones, membranes, and fluids surrounding the brain and spinal cord) as a biomechanical system, from the outside of the body inward, birthing the specialty of cranial osteopathy.
Later in his career, Dr. Sutherland began to listen more deeply to what was happening in the whole body-mind-energy systems of his patients, connecting with the deep intelligence and wisdom within and the innate capacity to heal, working from the inside out.
This way of working came to be called Biodynamics. Based on the work of Dr. Sutherland and other cranial osteopaths, as taught now, Biodynamics includes his earlier biomechanical explorations and expands greatly on them.
Osteopathic doctor John Upledger later popularized the biomechanical style, teaching manual techniques to non-doctors and making it widely available around the world. Thanks to Dr. Upledger, the term “craniosacral therapy” is one that many people have heard.
Later, Franklyn Sills became fascinated with the Biodynamic way of practicing craniosacral therapy and began teaching it. Biodynamics is becoming more widely available around the world. Read his history of Craniosacral Biodynamics here.
MaryAnn is currently pursuing more advanced training in the Biodynamic style with Roger Gilchrist, author of Craniosacral Therapy and the Energy Body: An Overview of Craniosacral Biodynamics. Gilchrist is a psychotherapist who trained as a Biodynamics practitioner and teacher with Franklyn Sills.
Biodynamic craniosacral therapy helps receivers relax deeply, releasing conditioned patterns that no longer serve a healthy purpose and reorganizing their systems in a more optimal way.
Biodynamics sessions use gentle, sustained touch, with receivers staying fully clothed.
MaryAnn’s role as a Biodynamics practitioner is to listen from a neutral place to the subtle rhythms in your system and reflect your blueprint for optimal health back to you, allowing your intelligent system to find and augment the innate health within.
The number of sessions needed varies from client to client and from condition to condition. In general, for new clients, a minimum of three sessions is recommended. Many clients report improvements after just one session.
To schedule a single Biodynamics session, click here.
What people are saying…
It’s such a gift 💝 thank you ~ JH, October 2021
“You did such a great job of helping me relieve the issue, I’m so grateful for the change you made in my life. You will always be at the top of my list for referrals for tmj relief and cranial sacral.” ~ BT, July 2021