Is Craniosacral Therapy suitable for children and babies?

Craniosacral therapy for babies and children is particularly useful and effective as there are no side-effects and it is mostly quite relaxing for the baby. By gently resting the hands on various areas of the body, a trained therapist can detect disturbances in the craniosacral motion caused by restrictions in the dura (membranes that surround the brain and spinal cord) or fascia (tissue that surrounds all soft tissue and organs). An example is colic, which is mostly caused by a restriction of the occipital cranial base (head on neck joint), which may cause an irritation of the vagus nerve which, in turn, affects the gastro-intestinal system.

madsmallBy gently facilitating small movements and unwinding, the body releases these stored up restrictions and traumas. Other problems with babies that are successfully treated are sucking (latching in breastfeeding) problems, breathing difficulties, restlessness and irritability as well as birth or uterine trauma. Health conditions for which CST has shown to be effective include allergies, auditory difficulties such as middle ear problems, autism, behavioural problems, brain and spinal cord injuries, central nervous system disorders, cerebral palsy, developmental problems, bedwetting, nightmares/night terrors, delayed recovery from medical intervention, emotional difficulties, tantrums, injuries and post-operative problems, learning disabilities, such as ADD (due to craniosacral dysfunction) and dyslexia, motor co-ordination difficulties, respiratory problems such as asthma and bronchitis, and vision disturbances have also been addressed successfully.

Many mothers have found CST to be an incredible support system with their babies and children.

For more information CST for babies and children, visit  or go here to book a session BOOK A SESSION


Testimonial for Scoliosis and back pain – including information about Scoliosis

Name: Kerry Dell (Umhlanga, 25 March 2014)
Why I chose to come for CST (Craniosacral Therapy):
Heard it was worth trying.
How would I rate Craniosacral Therapy:
An incredible therapy
My own experience of CST (Craniosacral Therapy) with Donovan Hean:
I think it took 3 sessions and all my back ache was totally resolved.  I live with constant back pain due to my scoliosis and when I went to Donovan, I was doubled over with pain.  After 3 sessions I was standing straight and didn’t feel any pain for about 2 years after the sessions.  I have recommended Donovan and will continue to recommend him – a professional therapist.  thank you!

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Most cases of scoliosis are considered to be of unknown origin (idiopathic).

craniosacralsystemThe craniosacral system surrounds, protects, nourishes and cleanses the brain and spinal cord. The spinal portion of the system is a tube-like structure within the spinal canal that envelops the spinal cord and spinal nerve roots. This is called the dural tube. The membrane layers that form the dural tube are continuous with the membrane layers within the cranium. The outermost layer is the dura mater membrane. Within the cranium, it’s attached directly to the bones and folds inward to form intracranial separations. In the spinal canal, however, it’s normally attached to bone at only a few sites.dural tube strain patterns, such as lack of mobility, compression, side-bending, torsion and scoliosisstretching, can migrate into the spinal column, surrounding fascia and tissue, causing the structures to reorganize into abnormal shapes. This can lead to some of the common issues encountered in the clinical practice, such as nerve root compression, cranial base compromise, spinal stenosis, facet compression, herniated disc, coccyx pain, bone spurs and scoliosis. Dural tube distortion can be the primary cause of scoliosis. When this is the case, mobilizing the dural tube, as well as the spinal column, fascia and surrounding tissue, is essential in aiding the body to correct the condition.

Structural interconnections, interactions and dysfunction within the body can be baffling at times. CranioSacral Therapy embraces the infinite possibilities of interrelationships that can occur and uses the craniosacral and fascial systems as precise and powerful tools in identifying and facilitating the correction of compromising tissue patterns. In this way, scoliosis and many other conditions relating to the spinal column can be efficiently assessed and effectively addressed.

It is also possible that the primary cause may lie elsewhere. Actually, it might be found anywhere in the body. Perhaps intracranial membrane strain, scar tissue or imbalance within the musculature of the torso has formed, causing the spinal column to curve abnormally. Usually, all of the structural “tubes” surrounding the spinal cord can be involved to some degree. It’s important to address the scar tissue, tissue imbalance or other primary cause that is acting as the anchor, holding the scoliosis in place. It’s equally important to mobilize the dural tube even after the soft-tissue and bony patterns have been mobilized. If adverse dural tube patterns are not addressed, a tendency to maintain the scoliosis will remain deep within the body as a powerful mold, actively forging abnormal tissue shape.

Craniosacral Therapy gently addresses compromised tissue patterns surrounding and within the spinal column, adipose tissue and the dural tube through techniques such as mobilization of fascia, gentle traction and enhancing the mobility of the body tissue in response to the motion of the craniosacral system. The craniosacral system normally moves the entire body in a rhythmic motion. The practitioner uses the tissue response to this movement to assess areas of compromise and localize core restrictive patterns. Tissue response to the craniosacral rhythm also is used during therapy as a tool for dynamic change by assisting the body in moving more fully and freely, in synchrony with the vital rhythmic current of the craniosacral system.

CST for Injuries, Post Op recovery and Trauma

upper-back-pain-causesHave you ever had an injury or operation and the area just never seems to fully recover, but on xray or scan, it has been completely repaired and appears normal?  The area still aches, or is painful, or flares up occasionally (usually just when you don’t need it to)?

Well, there is a very good reason why.  Residual trauma from events such as car accidents, birth trauma, abuse or injury may result in a variety of chronic conditions. In response to stress and trauma at the physical, emotional, and mental levels the body’s tissues contract (tighten/spasm). When unprocessed shock is severe enough the tissues remain contracted and the trauma becomes embodied. Any stresses, strains, tensions or traumas which have been stored by the body in this way, will restrict the body’s functioning and may give rise to health problems over the years.

Something the average person does not consider is post-operative trauma: despite analgesia, when an incision is made in the body, the unconscious mind registers this as a life-threatening event, causing the body/mind to respond appropriately, with the fight/flight mechanism. Unable to “escape”, the body sinks into a depression to facilitate an adjustment to an inescapable situation. Rationally, we “know” that the operation was necessary, but the bodily violation remains contained within our cellular memory as a trauma, resulting in emotional stress and potential depression.

cropped-header6.jpgCraniosacral Therapy facilitates and supports the body’s innate ability to effect deep healing of physical or emotional traumas that have not found appropriate release through massage or other types of therapy.

An example is:  A client of my wife’s had a traumatic event in which he was shot through both arms.  He is a prominent person in the gardening industry and as a result of the injury (and shock/trauma) lost the use of his right arm, which impacted hugely on his mobility and ability to demonstrate how to prune roses.  My wife visited him and spoke with his daughter whose child had witnessed the event, and suggested she take the child for Cranio to help him get over the shock.  She was asked if it would work for her father, and she answered “yes of course it will, but he already thinks I am a little strange so I am not going to suggest it to him, here is the website and some info, if he wants to try it, he can give my husband a call”.

Well, it turned out that he had been given the prognosis from a neurologist after electrical testing of nerve pathways on his arm to” forget ever using your right arm again, learn to use your left arm”.  This left him feeling very angry at having all hope of recovery taken away by this specialist, and when his daughter suggested Cranio to him, he responded “I will try ANYTHING to get my arm back”.

On her next trip to Johannesburg, I travelled up with her on Sunday and we went to see him on his farm.  I did not have a therapy bed with me and I ended up giving him a session in a chair in his office.  He called me that night, cautiously excited, to say “whatever you did, I can feel my arm is different, its tingling, can you give me another session before you leave tomorrow”.  Generally we do not do this, as the body needs time to integrate the healing, but he being the lovely man he is, persuaded me to give him a second session and I left to go back to Durban by plane.  He called me that night to say that he could feel in his fingers tingling, and he would like to continue with his sessions.  I could not unfortunately travel that distance bi-weekly to give him sessions so I referred him to my colleague Carlo de Bruin in Pretoria and he continued to see him in the New Year (this happened in November).

My wife saw him at Gardenex at the end of March and she went to greet him, and he swept her into a huge hug and waved his arm about excitedly saying “look, look, and I can prune to” and showed her his adapted pruning technique with his right hand which was still weak, but it was working!  He was elated as you can well imagine.

                                                For testimonials click here

So!  That whiplash/frozen shoulder/old injury that you have been told that you “must just live with”, or the operation you had on an area that still troubles you, migranes, sore knees and hips, elbows or legs and ankles, can all be physically released from the trauma they are carrying from injury, post-op trauma and shock and the area can then return to normality and full function.


Some Client Testimonials

Name: Phumzile Dube
Why I chose to come for CST (Craniosacral Therapy):
I had had a mini stroke and had headaches and a numb left side. I’d tried a number of therapies when I saw Donovan’s name and what he does. I phoned and he explained CST to me. He has worked through my problems. Through sessions with him I’ve understood how body organs are connected to my spine. I’ve also grown in spirituality through interacting with him. He is patient, kind, generous and a man of integrity. I count him as a valued friend now.
How would I rate Craniosacral Therapy:
A very effective therapy
My own experience of CST (Craniosacral Therapy) with Donovan Hean: Very effective. My many questions addressed and my ailments quickly resolved. Donovan’s manner is very therapeutic but the healing has always been spot-on.
Name: Natalie Lombard
My own experience of CST (Craniosacral Therapy) with Donovan Hean:
Approximately 3 years ago, I made contact with Donovan. I found his details off the Cranio website for Durban practitioners and I selected him as a therapist……… Donovan has seen my family (children now age 6 and 4) through much hardship, trauma and healing and has shifted much for us.  Donovan is just incredible. He is a solid, well grounded individual who is honest and always acts out of love and integrity. I have absolute faith in Donovan as a Craniosacral Therapist and a friend. Without him, our lives would not be as rich. I honor him hugely for what he is doing each day to make a difference in the Now.
Thank you.
Natalie Lombard
Client, friend and colleague
Name: Amanda Murray
Why I chose to come for CST (Craniosacral Therapy):
A friend suggested trying CST when my 3 month old baby was suffering from colic……….it helped ease and re-align my little daughter’s body hasten the departure of the colic.She is a healthy, robust, happy, well-balanced little girl of almost 3 years now, and we’re grateful to Donovan, his kindness, gentleness and generosity – and his wife Dee, who is very much a part of the healing energy they share with those people in their lives.Big hug from Us to You.
How would I rate Craniosacral Therapy: A very effective therapy
Name: Fran Jex
Why I chose to come for CST (Craniosacral Therapy):
I came for CST because I knew Donovan, and felt comfortable with his energy.  I didnt know much about the actual process, but having started it, I could feel the energy move and shift.  It makes sense, releasing trapped energy from the spinal system.  Working with Donovan was one of the best experiences on my healing journey.
How would I rate Craniosacral Therapy:
I enjoyed my sessions enormously and would recommend Donovan and CST to anyone who is looking to resolve their health or emotional trauma issues gently and effectively.
My own experience of CST (Craniosacral Therapy) with Donovan Hean:
I came to Donovan because I was in a very bad place, in a relationship that had turned bad, lacking the courage to remove myself from it, and making myself very ill in the process.  I worked with Donovan for nearly a year before I allowed myself to see what my problem was.  We worked through A LOT of stuff that I had carried for years.  He was just incredible, calm, insightful, patient, caring. After months of feeling I couldn’t wait for the next session, I woke up one day and felt ‘it is done’.  I phoned to tell him, and he said ‘I know, it is done”!

CST for Infants and Children

madsmallThe gentleness and non-invasive approach of CST make it an appropriate therapy for all ages and many conditions. It is particularly beneficial to babies and children for whom the calm, secure approach of CST enables them to relax within the therapy and become involved with their own recovery. CST is a respectful of their physiology, and it is often the case that over time the requirement for chemical interventions subsides along with problematic side effects associated with them.

Bheema1Health conditions for which CST has shown to be effective include allergies, auditory difficulties such as middle ear problems, autism, behavioural problems, brain and spinal cord injuries, central nervous system disorders, cerebral palsy, developmental problems, delayed recovery from medical intervention, emotional difficulties, tantrums, injuries and post-operative problems, learning disabilities, such as ADD and dyslexia, motor co-ordination difficulties, respiratory problems such as asthma and bronchitis, and vision disturbances.

In babies, it may be used for neo-natal care for example, birth trauma, and behavioural distortions generated by chronic stress and shock. In our high caesarian rate, CST has been found to be supportive in relieving colic symptoms, latching (breast feeding) and sleep pattern regulation. Many mothers have found CST to be an incredible support system with their babies and children.
amanda testimonialDr. Al Pelowski (BA MA MSc ND RCST), explains about using CST with Babies and Children:


CST for Excema

Dr Al Pelowski share with us an amazing story of a little girl in Cape Town who was completely excemic from head to toe (whole body excema), who in a few sessions, was completely clear of this terribly distressing skin condition.  Her parents had tried everything: steriods, clay, seawater, mud, homeopathy, aromatherapy, dietary changes in the mother, as well as dietary changes in the weaning programme.  Nothing had any effect at all.

Listen to his story.  It is inspiring and entertaining to listen to how it resolved from session to session.


What is “Cranio” or Craniosacral Therapy?

My wife has come home countless times from travelling all over the country for her marketing and advertising, and told me how she has sat on the plane and chatted with the person next to her, and when asked what her husband does and she says “he’s a Craniosacral Therapist”, the response is “a Cranio WHAAT?”.  So for those who have, or are asking that question, here is an explanation (and DVD) as to what it is and how it works!

CranioSacral Therapy (CST) is a non-invasive therapy designed to listen to and support nerve pathways in the body to integrate and heal. There is a focus on working with the skeletal system and the cerebrospinal fluid that circulates through the cranium, spinal cord, and sacrum. When the bones and tissues are aligned well, our nervous system can relax and respond better to daily life. Our circulation increases which in turn increases hormone flow and cellular function.

Craniosacral Therapy has its origins in Osteopathy (for history of CST click here) and its application and methods have been refined over the past several decades by many prominent leaders in this field and recognized teaching institutions (worldwide).

Craniosacral Therapy (CST) is a gentle, hands-on method of evaluating and enhancing the Craniosacral System, the environment in which the brain and spinal cord function. Imbalance or dysfunction in the Craniosacral System can cause a wide range of sensory, motor or neurological impairments and dysfunction. Craniosacral Therapy has been found to be effective for an extensive variety of health issues (click here to see what they are), and some of these are listed further down the page, along with a variety of YouTube clips of an interview with the founder of CST in SA, Dr Alan Pelowski where he covers some topics and conditions in which it is used.