Saturday, July 7, 2012

CAM Disciplines and Modalities Part 1: A - C

"Accept no one's definition of your life, but define yourself."

- Harvey S. Firestone     


Throughout my post I have mentioned a few times many disciplines and modalities that may not be familiar to some. So here in this four-part post, I have compiled a long list of the disciplines and modalities of CAM (Complementary and Alternative Medicine) that I can find. At the end of each, I have included a link to where you can find a detailed description.

          Part 1: A-C
          Part 2: D-L
          Part 3: M-Ro
          Part 4: Ru-Z

Complementary and Alternative Medicine:
Disciplines and Modalities - Part 1

          Acupressure                             Brennen Healing
          Alexander Technique              Canadian Deep Muscle Massage
          Amma Therapy (Anma)           Chair Massage
          Aromatherapy                           Chi Nei Tsang
          Aston Patterning                      Core Energetics
          Bioenergetics                           Craniosacral Therapy
          Bowen Technique                    Cross Fiber Massage

Acupressure: Dating back 5000 years, acupressure is part of traditional Chinese medicine and is often described as "acupuncture without the needles." As a non-intrusive precursor of acupuncture, acupressure uses deep finger pressure applied at certain points located along an invisible system of energy channels within the body called meridians. Because these points directly relate to organs and glands of the body, constrictions in the flow of energy at these points causes disease and discomfort. Acupressure stimulates these points to remove blockages, to increase the energy flow, to reduce stress, and to promote health and harmony in the body. Rated Medium. [Details]

Alexander Technique: The Alexander Technique is an awareness practice for identifying and developing discipline over the negative physical habits of incorrect posture and movement. Developed a century ago by actor F. Matthias Alexander, who used it to cure himself of chronic laryngitis, he believed if the vertebrae were out of alignment it was due to these poor habits. The Alexander Technique is a simple method of reeducating the mind and body to improve ease and freedom of movement, balance, and coordination. The technique teaches the use of the appropriate amount of effort for a particular activity, giving you more energy for all your activities. [Details]

Amma Therapy: In Chinese, amma means "push-pull." Amma therapy is concerned with removing blockages and balancing the body's flow of energy along its meridians with a combination of many therapeutic massage techniques including shiatsu, reflexology, deep fascial and connective tissue massage, Swedish massage, and skeletal manipulations. Originated in China, interest in Amma Therapy has been regenerated by Korean-born Tina Sohn. [Details]

Aromatherapy: Aromatherapy is the use of essential oils for curative and rejuvenating effects. Dating back to ancient Egypt, India, and the Far East, this simple therapy has been used for centuries to reduce stress and tension, refresh and invigorate the body, soothe emotions, and clear the mind. After an initial discussion with the client, specific essential oils are used in conjunction with other appropriate techniques, such as massage, acupressure, or reflexology. Used in oils, the essential oil is absorbed through the skin and into the body to affect physiological change. When inhaled the aroma directly affects the limbic area of the brain that is related to emotions and memories. [Details]

Aston Patterning: Aston Patterning is a comprehensive integration of massage, deep tissue work, and movement education. It was developed in the mid-1970s by dancer Judith Aston, while searching for an alternative to spinal fusion surgery. She became a top trainee of Ida Rolf and designer of the original exercises for Rolf movement and later tailored a program to facilitate rehabilitation, improve performance, and prevent injury called Aston Patterning. It combines not only massage work but also a reeducation of the body through movement and awareness to maintain change. [Details]

Bioenergetics: Bioenergetics is a combination of physical and psychological techniques used to release constrictions in the energy flow of the body. Because psychological defenses are anchored in the body, special attention is given to the muscular patterns inhibiting self-expression. Developed from the work of Wilheim Reich and refined by his pupil Alexander Lowen, this technique uses physical exercises, deep breathing, and massage to permit the body to give up its need to armor itself. [Details]

Bowen Technique: This massage technique is named after Australian Tom Bowen who, in the 1950's, introduced the concept of having rest periods between a series of massage movements within a treatment session to allow the body to absorb the healing process. The massage moves are a gentle but precise soft tissue manipulation made with the intention of creating harmony within the body so that the body makes its own adjustments and achieves its own cure. [Details]

Brennen Healing: Barbara Brennan Healing focuses on clearing blocked energy and balancing the body's energy field through hands-on work and deep healing techniques. Emphasis is placed on enabling the therapist to discover her own healing process and thus personalize her healing approach. Channeling, use of spiritual guidance, healing with color and sound, and work with auras are among the techniques used. [Details]

Canadian Deep Muscle Massage: This technique addresses specific muscles and muscle groups. The practitioners are trained to fix specific problems. It is a fundamental technique that offers fast results for both pain and stress. This form of cross fiber massage was first written about in the late 1800's in New York City. A medical doctor performing autopsies noticed that diseased areas of the body were surrounded by muscle fibers that were dehydrated and stuck together. He surmised that if one would rub across these fibers, they would release and the healthy state of muscle would be restored. This technique begins gently and progresses deeply as the outer muscle fibers relax, allowing the second and third layer of muscle to be addressed. [Details]

Chair Massage: When a ten or twenty minute relaxation session is needed, this is the technique for you. You are massaged fully clothed in a special chair designed to relax you. Because the chair is completely portable, you may see chair massage at the airport or health club, or you may want a practitioner to come to your office or business to massage the staff or guests at a party. Rated Light. Rated Medium. [Details]

Chi Nei Tsang: In Chinese "chi" means energy and "nei tsang" means internal organs. Chi Nei Tsang was originally developed by Chinese Taoist monks to strengthen their bodies to carry the energy required to perform their spiritual practices. Chi Nei Tsang practitioners work mainly on the abdomen with a deep, soft and gentle touch to train internal organs to work more efficiently and to improve energy flow in the body. [Details]

Core Energetics: Started by Dr. John Pierralcos in 1971, core energetics adds a more spiritual aspect to bioenergetics. The core is the inner center or higher self. The vision of this psychotherapeutic work is to invite a deeper experience and identification with one's core energy and feelings, releasing the individual to create his or her life from this deep center. This is achieved gradually by bringing movement and consciousness to the body. [Details]

Craniosacral Therapy: Within the craniosacral system is the cerebrospinal fluid that moves in a slight but perceptible tide-like manner. Craniosacral therapists assist in facilitating change in areas of restriction where this tide-like motion is limited, confined, and immobilized. By using a gentle light touch, this fluid becomes more rhythmic and balanced, and the central nervous system is restored. Craniosacral therapy is helpful to those with nervous disorders, motor-coordination impairments, attention deficit disorders, insomnia, and other problems. Craniosacral therapy was originally developed in the early 1900's by an osteopath named William G. Sutherland and later refined and promoted by Dr. John Upledger. [Details]

Cross Fiber Massage: Refer to "Canadian Deep Muscle Massage" and "Pfrimmer Massage". [Details]


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- Leo Feraer-Oporto     

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