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Osteopathy Guide

Osteopathy Guide

Whats On This Page:

What Is Osteopathy ?

Principles of Osteopathy

What can Osteopathy Help ?

Cranial Osteopathy

The Perrin Technique™

Learn to be an Osteopath

Related Links

Osteopath Clinics in Manchester


Osteopathy Guide

What Is Osteopathy ? Back to top

Osteopathy is the treatment of the musculo-skeletal system, using a system of manipulations to the body to restore normal function and release compressed bones and joints.


Osteopaths believe in the ability of the body to heal itself and their treatment assists in that process. Osteopathy was founded in the 1800s by a surgeon called Andrew Still.





The Treatment

Osteopathy being a Holistic approach to health, means that the focus is on the individual person.

At the consultation you will be asked about your medical history and lifestyle. The physical examination will require you to remove some clothing so that the osteopath can see how your body moves. 


The treatment is aimed at structural problems not disease, the osteopath view the body as one unit therefore a problem in one part of the body can cause discomfort in another, a leg injury could cause neck pain. An osteopath uses a lot of different techniques, only the area affected is treated this is not a full body treatment like forms of massage. The list below explains a few.  


These are the eight major principles of osteopathy: Back to top
The body is a unit.
Structure and function are reciprocally inter-related.
The body possesses self-regulatory mechanisms.
The body has the inherent capacity to defend and repair itself.
When the normal adaptability is disrupted, or when environmental changes overcome the body’s capacity for self maintenance, disease may ensue.
The movement of body fluids is essential to the maintenance of health.
The nerves play a crucial part in controlling the fluids of the body.
There are somatic components to disease that are not only manifestations of disease, but also are factors that contribute to maintenance of the disease state.



Traction~pulling and stretching

Pumping~lymphatic drainage

Functional~test of range of motion in joints

Soft tissue~ a form or massage

Articulation~stretching the joint

Adjustment~manipulation producing cracking noise.


What can Osteopathy Help ? Back to top

Osteopaths treat a wide range of problems, here are some common ones.


Osteopathy can reduce pain, ease swelling and improve mobility and range of joint movement


Osteopathy offers assistance to asthma sufferers by working on all aspects of the breathing mechanism, including the ribs, spine, diaphragm and other muscles of breathing.
It also works on the nerve control of the chest as well as blood and fluid supply to the bronchii and lungs. Osteopathy can also play an important preventative role in the care of someone who is suffering from asthma

Muscular Aches and Pains
Muscle pains like lumbago, fibrositis and rheumatic aches in the legs and arms are some of the commonest medical complaints. These conditions can be alleviated, but rarely cured, by drugs. To obtain more permanent relief it is necessary to try and eliminate their underlying cause, something the osteopath is specifically trained to do
After Pregnancy

Some women start to experience constant back problems or period pain only after giving birth. This can be caused by weakened ligaments and the lack of muscle strength, thereby causing imbalance in the pelvis and low back.
Digestive Disorders
There are many digestive complaints and one of the most common now is Irritable Bowel Syndrome. This condition may be treated with medication, both orthodox and complementary. However, osteopathy can certainly bring relief through treatment both locally to the stomach wall, and by accessing the spinal nerves at the appropriate position on the spinal column.

The osteopath can reduce the swelling and pressure around the slipped disc or degenerate disc. Thereby reducing the pressure on the sciatic nerve root.
In the case of the piriformis syndrome, the osteopath can reduce the contraction and pressure the pirifrmis muscle may be putting on the sciatic nerve. This involves specialised manual techniques applied to the piriformis muscle and pelvis.
Sinusitis, headaches and migraine
Sinuses may become chronically obstructed, and before surgery is necessary, osteopathy may offer welcome relief. Treatments on the head and face, directly on the jaw will follow the drainage lines to release obstructions and improve the flow of fluids to the sinuses.
Back problems

Osteopaths are skilled in diagnosing back pain. Most back troubles result from mechanical or functional disturbances of the spine. Osteopaths have been treating back problems for over 100 years.
The osteopath uses a touch called palpation, to identify weak points or excessive strain throughout the body. After an assessment, the osteopath will use a variety of gentle techniques, such as soft-tissue massage, joint mobilization and manipulation, and muscle stretching to ease your back pain.

Cranial Osteopathy Back to top

Cranial osteopathy is a subtle type of osteopathic treatment to encourages the release of stresses and tensions throughout the body, including the head.
It is a gentle yet very effective approach and may be used in a wide range of conditions for people of all ages.


Cranial osteopaths are trained to feel a very subtle, rhythmical shape change that is present in all body tissues. This is called Involuntary Motion or the Cranial Rhythm. The movement is of very small amplitude, therefore it takes practitioners with a very finely developed sense of touch to feel it. This rhythm was first described in the early 1900's by Dr. William G. Sutherland . Practitioners compare what your rhythm is doing to what they consider ideal. This shows them what stresses and strains your body is under at present, and what tensions it may be carrying as a result of its past history. It also gives them an insight into the overall condition of your body, for example if it is healthy, or stressed and tired.

Accumulation of stress and strain in the body When we experience physical or emotional stresses our body tissues tend to tighten up. The body may have been able to adapt to these effects at the time, but a lasting strain often remains. Any tensions which remain held in the body can restrict its free movement. Gradually the body may find it more and more difficult to cope with accumulated stresses and symptoms may develop.


While it can be highly effective at relieving symptoms cranial osteopathy aims to treat the whole person not just the condition, so a very wide range of situations may benefit from treatment. These may include back and neck pain; joint pain and sports injuries; headaches, migraines and sinus problems; stress; recurrent infection; period pain; digestive difficulties; and treatment may also benefit general health and well-being.


The Perrin Technique

The Perrin Clinc Manchester Back to top

The Perrin Clinic is dedicated to helping sufferers with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS/ME) The Perrin Technique™ which has helped hundreds of patients with chronic fatigue syndrome and totally cured many since 1989


The Perrin Technique is based on Dr Perrin’s theory that different stress factors whether physical, allergies, emotional or infections lead to an overstrain of the sympathetic nervous system. Further investigation has led to a probable cause of this nervous system overload being a build up of toxins in the fluid around the brain and the spinal cord. Some of the poisons caused by infection or inflammation in the head or spine flow through perforations in a bony plate (the cribriform plate) just above the nasal sinuses into the lymph ducts of the face and neck. The toxins are also meant to drain down the spinal cord and out into the lymph ducts lying along the spine. In a CFS/ME sufferer these normal drainage points are congested.


Raymond Perrin’s research at the University of Salford in conjunction with the University of Manchester has provided strong evidence that an important component of CFS/ME involves a disturbance of lymphatic drainage of the brain and muscles. The novel osteopathic treatment developed by Raymond Perrin has been statistically validated in both clinical trials, emphasising the need to focus future research on the biomechanical aspects of this disorder. Raymond has expanded our knowledge of CFS/ME, which led to a doctorate awarded by the University of Salford.

The Perrin Clinic™ is dedicated to training and monitoring practitioners who as licensed in the Perrin Technique™ will be taught by Dr Perrin himself in the methods of diagnosing and treating CFS/ME, which he has developed through sixteen years of clinical research and through successfully treating hundreds of grateful patients.

Learn to be an Osteopath Back to top

Osteopathy at the British College of Osteopathic Medicine

Bachelor of Osteopathic Medicine
The B.Ost.Med degree includes the Diploma in Osteopathy and Diploma in Naturopathy, which are professional awards denoting clinical competence and are GOsC and GCRN accredited, enabling appropriate professional registration

General Osteopathic Council

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 Osteopath in Manchester  Back to Top

Chorlton Osteopathic Clinic
0161 860 4055

1 Sandy Lane
Manchester,M21 8TL

City Osteopaths

0161 839 6611
13 St John Street
Manchester, M3 4DQ

The Crossway Clinic
39 Crossway
Didsbury, Manchester
M20 6TU
Phone: 01614 451018


Denis Brown

0161 834 4076
13 St John's Street
Manchester, M3 4DQ


Manchester Osteopaths

0161 835 2358

49 King Street,

Manchester, M2-7AY

The Jonathan Poston Practice
0161 798 6352

497 Bury New Road
Manchester, M25 1AD

The Perrin Clinic

0161 773 0123
11 St John Street
Manchester, M3 4DW


Still Point Clinic

Alex Green Cranial Osteopath
0161 231 1666

29 Shirley Avenue
Manchester, M34 2LW

The Manchester Clinic (private clinic)
0161 276 4486

Manchester Royal Infirmary
Oxford Road
Manchester, M13 9PL

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