In a nutshell, what is osteopathy?
To be very brief, osteopathy is a holistic form of healing which means an osteopath considers the WHOLE body when treating a client – this includes the bones, joints, connective tissue, muscles, nerves and more. Hands on techniques are used to align the body’s tissue and bring it back to its natural state.
Why is osteopathy not very well known in Calgary?
Until fairly recently, Alberta hasn’t had any form of education specifically for manual osteopaths. If someone wanted to study osteopathy, they would have had to travel to Toronto or Vancouver. In 2013, the National Manual Osteopathic College opened its doors to serve as Alberta’s only school offering a certified curriculum where graduates are fully insured to practice manual osteopathy across Canada.
How is manual osteopathy different from other common medical services like massage, physio or chiro?
I’ll start with how it’s similar: all paramedical treatments aim to heal pain and disfunction in the body. Each modality has its specific focus and can be extremely effective in restoring the body’s function. Manual osteopathy, as I mentioned above, looks at the body as a whole unit. In this sense, that’s how it’s different. For example, one session may treat the bones, muscles, and nervous system, meaning no two treatments are the same. A manual osteopath takes the time to assess and figure out the cause of the dysfunction, whether it be a joint that’s out of place, soft tissue that needs release, even and organ that’s stuck or twisted.
What could I expect during a manual osteopathy treatment?
It starts with a conversation about your overall health and the specific issues you’re facing. Then I do the full body assessment, which varies depending on what the issues are. Then the treatment begins which is gentle and could mean you laying on your back, sitting upright, or standing, again depending on the issue. All of techniques are hands on which means I am gently shifting the client’s body, and the client is asked to turn or twist as necessary.