CranioSacral Therapy dates back to 1970 when osteopathic physician John E Upledger first witnessed the rhythmical movement of the craniosacral system during spinal surgery. None of his colleagues or medical texts could explain the phenomena. Two years later, he attended a cranial osteopathy course developed by William Sutherland which purported that the bones of the skull weren’t as fused as medics were taught but continue to move throughout a person’s life.

Recalling the odd pulsing movement he’d witnessed years before, he theorized that some sort of hydraulic functioning was occurring inside the skull and spinal column.

In 1975 he joined the Osteopathic College at Michigan State University and led a team of anatomists, physiologists, biophysicists and bioengineers testing and documenting the influence of therapy on the craniosacral system. For the first time they were able to explain the function of the craniosacral system, and how it was responsible for the production, circulation and reabsorption of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). This CSF is responsible for maintaining the correct physiological environment in which the brain and nervous system can develop and function. He found that the constant production and reabsorption of CSF causes a rise and fall in fluid pressure within the craniosacral system, and if the system was compromised, it was not able to accommodate these pressure changes, and the build-up of pressure caused dysfunction and ill health.  He was then able demonstrate how light touch therapy could evaluate and treat malfunction in this system.  

In 1985, Dr Upledger went on to establish the Upledger Institute to teach the public and healthcare practitioners about the benefit of Craniosacral Therapy. The work has continued to develop, and many thousands of practitioners worldwide have been trained to treat people of all ages, with many different challenges.