Visceral Manipulation is a branch of Osteopathy that involves manual therapy towards specific organs. Many times the aches and pains of our lives are the result of internal organs that are in distress sending pain signals through the nervous system.
When an organ in distress is identified, it can be gently worked with to release its tissue restrictions. By addressing these restrictions the organ will be able to move more freely, have increased blood circulation, and send less pain through the nervous system. Ultimately, these changes lead to improved performance of the organ, a greater sense of well being and less pain.
People who benefit the most from Visceral Manipulation are those that have not had success with other methods of treatment that look exclusively at the muscles and skeleton. Due to modern lifestyle, it is estimated that 80-90% of physical dysfunction has an origin in some sort visceral or organ related issue.
Visceral Manipulation is a valuable way of looking at the body as well as treating it because it allows us to look at the body in a more global perspective. It helps us recognize that there is much more to ourselves than just our muscles and the structures that we see in the mirror. Often times treatment of an organ also leads to lifestyle considerations that may have led to the restriction in the first place.
For example, a marathon runner who complains of upper back and neck pain may be placing too much stress on the respiratory system, leading to inflammation. It would then be vital that the runner be able to periodize their running schedule to allow for recovery of the respiratory system while improving peak competitive performance. This person may also benefit from dietary anti-inflammatory changes, as well as medicinal herbs that promote healing of the respiratory tract.