2023 ArticlesGillespie Approach–Craniosacral Fascial Therapy Articles

Cognition, Education, and the Gillespie Approach

Based on forty-three years of clinical observation of infant therapy, I am presenting a hypothesis around cognition, education, and the Gillespie Approach.

In the 1980s and 1990s, many parents told me that their treated infants grew up needing minimal medical care and were smart. I thought the cognitive part was interesting but never pursued that aspect. When I leaped into the infant work in 2006 and these stories became more commonplace, I started to connect the cognitive dots.

My goal is for every infant on the planet to have at least a 200-second brain cycle and be strain-free. From my experience, I feel that this long brain cycle is in the top one percent of all brain cycles. With structural immunity mitigating many effects of common traumas during toddlerhood, I found that almost all infants could retain these great brain cycles well through their early years.

In addition to creating happy babies, that long cycle appeared to produce a calm and relaxed brain that functioned at an optimal level. I am assuming that the cerebrospinal fluid was moving well through an open craniosacral fascial system. I like to describe this phenomenon to parents as all of the brain lights were shining bright. 

This circumstance could possibly explain why many of these children were able to perform cognitive activities at three years of age that their contemporaries, whose lights were dimmer, could not. It could also possibly explain when these same children reached kindergarten in an intellectually unchallenged environment, they were bored stiff and even acted out in class. 

School officials may even have said that they had behavioral issues resulting in fired-up moms becoming “problem” moms. As a prime example, one mother relates her experience below.

A Mother Shares Her Son’s Gillespie Approach Healing Story

“Our newborn son had a lip tie and tongue tie that was lasered at seven weeks. He wouldn’t latch properly until our IBCLC advised us to try the Gillespie Approach. We completed 6-plus sessions until he was fully released, and his brain cycle was over 230 seconds. Therapy was a miracle, and he nursed successfully for almost a year.

We noticed our son was always ahead of the curve intellectually. We encouraged his constant curiosity and inquisitiveness early on at home. By two, he was reading words, memorizing all book author and illustrator names, spelling his full name, and counting bilingually. 

Once he was in a classroom setting, it was undeniable we were dealing with a different level of cognition. His memory was/is like no other. By 2½, his teachers were having him read the class roster list and testing his ‘amazing memory’ with various facts and questions.

He was in a play-based curriculum and had enough time outside to move his body in PreK. But he was already very bored by the curriculum—working on only letter sounds and low level counting. 

We worked at home to keep him growing and challenged. Educators voiced concerns on how bored he would be once he reached kindergarten. At five, he started sessions with a neighboring teacher to continue our efforts.

[Last] August, he started kindergarten as a young five-year-old. I tried to prep the school administration and teacher but was pushed off as an overconfident mother. Within two days, he was crying on how bored he was.

He was reading chapter books along with encyclopedias and thesauruses for fun. He was performing second-grade math problems and figuring out multiplication on his own.

I contacted the teacher again, and immediately she turned the conversation to his lack of first-time listening, not willing to do the activities (count to 6), and not raising his hand. I pushed hard and was able to have the school child psychologist challenge him within the school. She has him ‘documented at fifth-grade reading level’ and said, ‘I can’t go higher with him because our school ends at fifth grade. There’s nothing I put in front of him he can’t read.’

The teacher continues to defend that the school activities are engaging, hyperfocusing on his behavior but not willing to bend the lesson plan to stimulate and challenge him during class. Unfortunately, my child with high cognition must slow down to meet where the class and teacher are while she tries to label him defiant and disobedient.

We continue to look for the next best steps for him such as a school system that will recognize and fully support him for who he is. We are blessed by his passion for knowledge and his ability to question everything around him but cursed by the standard educational system, unable to support him at a young age.”

Dr. Gillespie Shares Insight

Everyone needs to realize that not every treated infant will take this path in life. But I have had many parents tell me over the years that their children did exceptionally well in school. Since our approach appeared to have played a major role in their scholastic success, I believe our work warrants scientific investigation through evidence-based medicine.

The research protocol could be straightforward where a group of infants could be randomly divided into two groups. Group A, the variable group, has the complete infant work resulting in brain cycles of 200 seconds or more and strain-free fascia. No further therapy is given. Group B, the control group, which is virtually every infant now on the planet, has no therapy.

Blinded researchers follow the children over the years with cognitive testing and compare the groups. The QuietMIND Foundation, a recognized integrative health thought leader and neuroscience research foundation, has recognized the importance of the Gillespie Approach and is probated to help conduct relevant clinical trials.

Since a fussy baby cannot quantitatively test for becoming a happy baby, carrying out a trial for the cognitive aspect of the Gillespie Approach can result in acceptable medical data. Scientific validation positively affecting cognition in children would be beneficial in the medical world for the work at birth to move forward.

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Dr. Barry Gillespie

Dr. Barry Gillespie founded Gillespie Approach–Craniosacral Fascial Therapy, which provides patients with a freely moving brain, spinal cord and fascial web, all critical to optimal health. Dr. Barry Gillespie also created the Baby Brain Score and discovered effective therapeutic techniques for newborns and infants. Read more about Dr. Barry Gillespie.

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