PLATTE COUNTY – Braving the front lines of a pandemic, North Carolina native and Kaycee resident Millie Woody takes her talents as a CranioSacral therapist to ranches where there have been equine injuries.
CranioSacral therapy, according to Maureen Rogers who explained the technique in Natural Horse Magazine: “Equine CranioSacral practitioners apply specific hands-on techniques to the horse’s body to release restrictions in the musculoskeletal system and in the fascia, a tissue that weaves the whole body together like a spider web. CranioSacral is an energy-based therapy using light contact like acupressure. There is no physical manipulation to the bones and tissues. While specific attention is given to the cranium, spine and sacrum, treatment is not limited to these areas due to the way the body is connected.”
Millie was recently doing therapy on a show horse that fell on the ice and had a severe hematoma on her left inner leg.
“What I am doing here is CranioSacral therapy with some Myofascial Release,” Millie said. “So basically, we are trying to get this hematoma where she injured herself to disperse with stimulation.”
Myofascial Release, according to the Myofacial Release Treatment Centers is a safe and very effective hands-on technique that involves applying gentle sustained pressure into the Myofascial connective tissue restrictions to eliminate pain and restore motion. This essential “time element” has to do with the viscous flow and the piezoelectric phenomenon: a low load (gentle pressure) applied slowly will allow a viscoelastic medium (fascia) to elongate.”
The injury originally left a basketball-sized hematoma, and with a few months of treatment, Millie had it down to nearly normal. The procedure takes time and focuses on reducing the animal’s pain level as well as the swelling.
“It’s a mixture of things,” Millie stated. “I do acupressure, I do some myofascial release massage, and there is also some energy work involved where you are just stimulating that area for the horse and asking it to increase it’s healing there.”
When stimulating the area, she said that you will go as deep as the animal allows you to go and do as much as you can each time.
“It’s all a light touch massage,” she said. “It’s mainly just feel as to what you go by and when you get to a point where you are not feeling any release or anything happening and that’s when you know that you stop because she’s letting you know, she’s had enough.”
Millie went to school to learn her craft and learned basic body work in North Carolina with Perfect Animal Health in Mount Pilot and the CranioSacral she did at Upledger Institute International which is a center that has dedicated and focused on CranioSacral therapy for over 35 years.
Although her and her husband have lived in Wyoming for five years, she has been practicing for eight years. Her goal is to gain even more knowledge in the areas of CranioSacral techniques and hopes to eventually be able to work on people as well as equine species.