CranioSacral Therapy in the South Bay

           Karen Axelrod

           Certified CranioSacral Therapist

CranioSacral Therapy for

Pregnant Moms

Pregnancy is a time of incredible change, introducing new feelings -- both physical and emotional -- into your body. Plus, the rapid weight gain you experience greatly changes your center of gravity and posture.


Prenatal CranioSacral Therapy is a wonderful way to relax, increase energy levels, and address common areas of discomfort. It also increases flow of oxygen, blood, and nutrients to fetal cells and tissue, providing an optimum growth environment for your baby.


Most important, it provides a special environment just for you -- so you can be nurtured and cared for at a time when so much attention is on the baby.


Numerous studies have shown that women who receive bodywork while pregnant experience fewer side effects and have easier births than women who do not. Effects include:

  • Relieve common discomforts of pregnancy, including nausea, fatigue, heartburn, headaches, backaches, sciatica, sore hands & feet, edema, and leg cramps
  • Reduce strain on the abdominal, neck, shoulder, leg, hip, and lower back muscles
  • Soften and gently stretch tissue to reduce stretch marks
  • Provide a quiet time to relax and reflect

CranioSacral Therapy can be a very powerful modality for pregnant moms because it provides a unique opportunity for women to gain valuable self-awareness and insight about their bodies, their growing babies, and the special needs of both.


Because CranioSacral Therapy has a direct effect on the central nervous system (CNS), it can relieve the effects of stress and provide a sense of overall calming to mom and baby. CranioSacral also helps the body -- and the pelvis in particular -- adapt to the growth of the baby so baby can more easily assume an ideal birth position. This ultimately promotes a timely, easier birthing process.


CranioSacral can also address the physical manifestations of any negative emotions (such as fear or worry) associated with your pregnancy. It can help rid the body of any residual tissue memory of past emotional or physical trauma -- some of which may relate to previous pregnancies, births, or the conception process. Releasing the body of such tissue memory clears the way for mom and baby to develop the healthiest relationship possible -- on a physical, emotional, mental, and even energetic level. Top of Page

CranioSacral Therapy boosts fertility

CST can boost fertility in a number of ways. If a woman is highly stressed and living in the “fight-or-flight” state, the body is not prepared for reproduction. Because of its inherently relaxing nature, CST can help women attain proper parasympathetic function (the opposite of "fight-or-flight"), which readies the body for conception and fertility.


Additionally, a misaligned pelvic structure or chronic muscle tension in the low back or pelvic floor can adversely affect nerves that supply the reproductive organs as well as the organs themselves. CST can help alleviate such tension so all the bones, muscles, organs, and nerves of the pelvis can regain optimal function to support conception and a healthy pregnancy.

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Is prenatal bodywork safe?

Prenatal holistic bodywork is absolutely safe during all phases of pregnancy when performed by a specially trained professional. It is also perfectly safe for women on bedrest (home and hospital visits are available). I have 2,000 hours of training in massage, CranioSacral, and other bodywork modalities, over 200 of which are pregnancy- and childbirth-related. I have helped hundreds of women through successful, healthy pregnancies. I look forward to working with you! Top of Page

How can this type of work help me

after the baby is born?

As a new mom, it is vital that you take time to "recharge your batteries" so that you can stay strong and healthy for your new baby and family. Any type of post-partum bodywork provides much-needed nurturing and support during the stressful time of early motherhood. It can also help ward off fatigue and post-partum blues.


Post-partum CranioSacral Therapy relieves muscle soreness in the pelvis and back due to hard labor or cesareans. It reduces neck and shoulder pain common with breastfeeding and lifting your new baby. Certain techniques also help restore the uterus to its normal size.


If the birth was particularly difficult or traumatic in any way, CranioSacral can help rid the body of any residual effect of that trauma. It also helps to restore structural integrity to the cranium, spine, and pelvis.


Lymphatic work is essential if you have a cesarean birth. Because of its association with the immune system, lymph drainage can help your cesarean scar heal faster, reduce the possibility of post-surgical infection, reduce scar tissue build-up, and eliminate swelling at the surgical site. Top of Page

How often should you book a session?

Most backaches, sciatica, swelling, and other common symptoms are temporary and will disappear after the baby is born. While you are pregnant, however, you can manage those symptoms with exercise and regular bodywork sessions.


How often you receive bodywork is really up to you -- based on how you feel. If you maintain an active lifestyle, exercise and stretch regularly, you may need fewer sessions than a woman whose lifestyle is more sedentary, who spends a lot of time seated at work, or is on bedrest.


Many women book sessions once or maybe twice a month during the first trimester depending on their level of discomfort. Those sessions tend to increase as the pregnancy progresses and the baby grows more and more. During the last trimester, when women are feeling the full effects of the weight gain, many clients book weekly sessions as their body prepares for birth.


Once the baby comes, most clients return within a week or two for their first post-partum session. Many continue treatments as their bodies adjust to breastfeeding, carrying the baby around, and changes in lifestyle and exercise habits. Top of Page

What to expect in a prenatal treatment session

With CranioSacral Therapy, you remain fully clothed and don't have to disrobe at all. Pillows, bolsters, and blankets are always available to help you be as comfortable as possible.


After disrobing for your lymphatic session, you will be completely covered by sheets on the table to ensure the utmost warmth, comfort, and security.


Options are available for you to lay on your side or face up with proper support, or even face down in a specially designed pregnancy massage pillow.


The session will be geared toward whatever you feel your body needs that day, whether it be CranioSacral for nervous system balancing or emotional clearing, lymphatic work to relieve swelling -- or a little of everything! Top of Page


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"A lot of therapists don't want to work with pregnant women, but Karen really knew what she was doing."A.F., Palos Verdes, CA
































"Before I had my youngest son, I had three miscarriages. I'm convinced that CranioSacral Therapy helped me get through my pregnancy with him."A.F., two-time Manhattan Beach mom










These sessions provide a special environment so you can be nurtured and cared for at a time when so much attention is on the baby.