Football Trauma - football players - Gillespie Approach–Craniosacral Fascial Therapy

Football Trauma

Just as blood circulates through the cardiovascular system, cerebrospinal fluid flows through the craniosacral fascial system. This fluid is formed in the choroid plexus of the ventricles, fluctuates around the brain and spinal cord, and flows down the cranial and spinal nerve sheaths into the collagen tubules of the fascial web. It plays an important role in cushioning, nourishing and detoxifying the central nervous system.

In the late 1800s, Dr. Andrew Still, the Father of Osteopathy, wrote: “I know of no part of the body that equals the fascia as a hunting ground. All nerves go to and terminate in that great system, the fascia. By its action we live and by its failure we die.”

When a patient presents with a tight head, or zero-second brain cycle, generally two separate categories of trauma have occurred. First, trauma to the head has strained the brain’s fascial meningeal covering, resulting in restricting its healthy expansion and contraction. Repeated blows to the cranium can tighten these tissues further where little or no measurable motion can be palpated.

At the same time, trauma to the web can also restrict these tissues since the craniosacral fascial system acts as one full-body unit. When the lower-body fascial web is freed, the brain can respond by expanding and contracting better. This is cranial therapy without touching the head—pretty cool. 

A sport like football can feed into both categories of trauma with repeated blows to the head and hard tackling and blocking to the body. I usually treat a concussed boy due to a singular event, but many repeated lesser blows may produce a similar cumulative effect.

I am suggesting that the first stage of chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE, may possibly be severe restriction of the craniosacral fascial system. With all of the boys who choose to play tackle football in America today, I believe this concept deserves scientific research.

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