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South African Institute of Cranial Studies (SAICS)'s profile page
The South African Institute of Cranial Studies was created in 1999 as a vehicle for bringing a full European accredited training course in cranial sacral therapy to South Africa.
This was through the efforts of Al Pelowski, who was practicing and teaching in the UK at the time, Kitya Nowicki of Integral Health in Cape Town, and Sharon Plaskitt in Johannesburg. In the year 2000 first training groups got underway in both cities.

The Local
Since its start in 2000, the Institute has produced some 180 graduates from a wide variety of health care professions. Most of them are in Gauteng, the W. Cape and kwaZulu Natal, but there are a few practitioners in other provinces and countries — Botswana, Namibia, Swaziland, Burkina Faso, Norway, Australia and the UK. Many of them are listed on the association website: www.cranial.za.org. Others can be tracked down by contacting your local area coordinator on the Institute website: www.cranial.co.za.

The Institute can call on a number of graduate teachers from a wide variety of professions, and is in a position to offer new diploma courses again this year in Durban, Mauritius and Johannesburg. The institute website has details on these courses and teachers.

The Institute offers several post graduate courses and community outreach projects each year. Some of these are open to advanced students as well as graduates and professionals from other fields.

The Global
Although the professional training and practice of CranioSacral Therapy per se has barely emerged in many parts of the world, it has ancient roots in diverse cultures and healing practises: for example, traditional midwives once knew how to gently reshape neonate heads to help release sutural overlap and compression problems. The gentle ‘holding and shaping’ way of bodywork has been a part of Oriental and native American medicine for thousands of years. It entered Western osteopathic medicine with the pioneering work of Wm Garner Sutherland at the turn of the last century. His students have since carried the cranio way to many parts of the world where holistically inclined health care professionals are taking it up — midwives, acupuncturists, osteopaths, chiropractors, veterinarians, dentists, massage therapists, naturopaths, shiatsu practitioners and traditional healers of all stripes.

The modern discipline has been shaped along its way with insights from humanistic psychotherapies, neuroanatomy and physiology, osteopathic paediatrics, dynamical systems theories and other sciences. This blend of ancient wisdom and modern science has led to a new understanding of trauma and illness, informed by the energetics of the body-mind, and to a fresh realisation of the awesome potential of healing. We look carefully at the ‘miracles’ and ask how to make them commonplace.

Over the years and around the world CranioSacral Therapy has found a special place when it comes to treating babies, young children and in trauma recovery at whatever age. This is because it is a gentle, hands-on, but non-manipulative form of body work that is client led, and because it gets results that last. Babies with colic, feeding, breathing, growth and developmental problems are especially responsive. CST is the gentle alternative preferred by mothers (and children) who have tried it and seen its results.

Altogether by 2006 there were some 15,000 cranio practitioners in 40 countries who have brought the cranio way into their practice.

The Why
There continues to be widespread demand for this work; not only in Europe and America where it has been around for many years, but also now in Africa, the Gulf, India, the Islands, Australia, and the whole developing Indian Ocean rim. Queries come in regularly from practitioners and parents far & wide who have ‘heard’ about cranial work from a colleague in London or Brisbane, or from a sister in Durban whose baby responded to it wonderfully, or from a teacher in special education in Cape Town who has seen the changes in her ‘autistic’ learners.
The quite incredible growth of craniosacral therapy is down to word of mouth results, with a little help from the internet.

Medical practitioners come to cranial because they want to move from the allopathic management of disease model to the naturopathic healing process model of health care. They bring their science to CST but do not know how to palpate or treat at the energy level, and are likely to be skeptical at first because it all seems so contrary and impossible to feel. However, most end up using CST all the time in their practice and would say they are also personally enriched by it.

Non-medical healers and teachers bring their belief and their healing hands to CST but want to know something of what goes on when people get worse and then get better. They want science to compliment their art; but not the old reductionist science of body as machine, as something to be fixed. They, and the medical people too, want to access the emergent sciences of biodynamics and deep ecology.
The art and science, the healer and the doctor come together in the cranial way, each to the benefit of the other.

The Goals
To develop creative, competent and safe practitioners of this subtle healing modality
To spread this work to all the communities of southern Africa and beyond through vigorous outreach programmes
To support its graduate practitioners throughout their working lives with continuing education and supervision
To raise funds and resources to support students who otherwise would be unable to undertake the training
To maintain and enhance standards of training and supervision fully in line with sister trainings around the world
To offer an examined diploma level training accessible to all qualified candidates in the health care & education professions
To cooperate and confer with practitioners from other fields and cultures
To help us understand that trauma need not be a life sentence, no matter how chronic or severe

The Outcomes
The Diploma is your gateway to running a successful practice and to continuous educational and teaching opportunities.

Your course is fully assessed, examined, and subject to external assessment. Its syllabus is fully in line with cranio-sacral therapy courses in the UK, Australia and other countries.

The course develops competencies in anatomy and physiology, in practitioner values and ethics, and in the hands-on practice of CST with all ages and in a wide variety of conditions. It includes material and study in the allied fields of holistic nutrition, counseling, pathology, crisis management and referral.

The Diploma entitles its graduates to register as full members of the Cranio-Sacral Therapy Association of South Africa.
CSTA-SA is the only professional association in the cranial field in Africa, and at present has 100+ members. It provides for continuing education, courses assessment, a regular free newsletter, and networking.

CSTA-SA is recognised by Natural Health Teaching Services—NHTS, a section 21 company (not for profit) in South Africa. NHTS sets basic standards for natural health practitioners and courses throughout SA, and represents its members in relation to SA government and tertiary educational bodies. It is initiating a nationwide ‘natural health’ information and advertising campaign.

Member contact details...
NameSouth African Institute of Cranial Studies (SAICS)
Contact nameCarol Green
Specialist qualificationsDip.CST
Telephone 1011-8831888
Telephone 2
Cell 10832593928
Cell 2
Practice/Training venueGood Vibrations,
9A Eleventh Ave,
Postal addressPO Box 60
Rivonia 2128
Listed modalities
Cranio-Sacral therapy
Listed associations
NO associations specified yet.
Cranio-Sacral Therapy
© NHTS - naturalhealthaccess.info - 2008