A Short History
(If you are more interested in Kinesiology and its application than in its history, please move to paragraph 2).
In comparison to many other therapies, Kinesiology developed fairly recently. Manual muscle testing was developed in the early 20th century by an orthopaedic surgeon R W Lovett to analyse disabilities in his patients. His techniques were developed further by Henry and Florence Kendall (Muscles:Testing and Function, 1949). Dr George Goodheart, a chiropractor in Detroit, developed this work further linking specific muscle responses to disease conditions of specific organs.
He also studied the work of osteopaths Frank Chapman and Charles Owen, integrating their discovery of neurolymphatic reflexes and the neurovascular reflexes discovered by an American chiropractor Terence Bennett into his own system of treatment, which he called Applied Kinesiology. This system came into being in the mid 1960s and as Goodheart became interested in acupuncture and Chinese medical knowledge he also integrated these concepts into Applied Kinesiology.
His work in recognising the inter-relationship between specific organ systems and certain muscles, neurolymphatic reflexes, neurovascular reflexes, meridian channels and acupuncture points laid the foundations for Kinesiology.
From Applied Kinesiology John Thie, another American chiropractor, developed a simplified system of Kinesiology which could be taught to lay people to help them maintain their own health. This is the origin of Touch for Health Kinesiology, which has expanded and spread to many other countries and is probably the most widely known form of Kinesiology. From Applied Kinesiology and Touch for Health many other Kinesiology systems such as Optimum Health Balance have developed.
There are a number of different Kinesiology disciplines but the aim is always to bring a client into balance on all levels of his/ her being - physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. Kinesiologists talk about “balancing” a client, rather than treating them.
All Kinesiology systems employ muscle testing or muscle monitoring (very gentle testing for a muscle response) to obtain information/ biofeedback from a client's body as to how the treatment session should proceed. This makes it a very individual and, for the client, an often enlightening experience. It is amazing how much information is stored in our subconscious, which we cannot normally access consciously.
Charles Benham, the creator of the OHB Kinesiology system, used to liken the process of muscle testing to gain information from a client's body to taking a file off the computer hard drive and putting it on the computer screen, where it can be seen and edited. Once a subconscious issue has been brought into a client's conscious awareness, then it is possible for it to be addressed and treated.
Kinesiology can be used to identify substances/ foodstuffs which are stressing a client and thus undermining their well-being. This is the aspect of Kinesology that tends to be most widely known. Testing of this kind can be very useful as a stand alone session but if used in the context of a balance then the reason why the client's body is stressed by a particular substance can be identified and hopefully treated.
As a Kinesiologist I work mainly with Optimum Health Balance, a kinesiology system created by Charles Benham, with whom I was fortunate enough to do most of my training. Charles, a widely respected and experienced Kinesiologist, developed OHB over a period of years during the 1980s and early 90s.
OHB belongs to the field of Energetic Kinesiology. After some pre-checks have been completed to ensure testing will be reliable, one muscle is used as an indicator muscle. OHB uses muscle monitoring and sequences of special symbol cards/ icons to gather information about an issue or problem and to choose the best treatment. This method of “questioning”, where the client's body is responding to the respective symbols, bypasses any expectations or assumptions the practitioner or client may have – it is the client's body doing the “talking”! The whole process is guided by the client's body responses and experiencing this can give clients valuable insights into their problem and its cause(s). It has been likened to having a "conversation" with your body.
This treatment is safe to use with the very young and the frail and elderly as it is very gentle and relaxing.
I am qualified to offer training in OHB up to advanced level. Information on courses is available on the Courses page.
TFH Kinesiology works with a range of muscles and looks closely at body posture and alignment. It incorporates aspects of Chinese Medicine, particularly the relationship of different muscle groups with specific meridians. For those familiar with the Law of the Five Elements, by correcting imbalances in the relevant muscles, it is possible to restore the correct flow of energy through the meridians of the 5 Elements. Many things we encounter in life disrupt this flow and lead to energy blockages and imbalances which, if they remain uncorrected, can in time lead to dis-ease and illness. Therefore keeping oneself balanced is good preventative healthcare but TFH can also help a range of health problems and is very helpful when settings our goals in life. Often our “heads” really want us to do something that our subconscious does not want us to do. In such situations the subconscious usually wins! By clearing any subconscious sabotage which is blocking our progress, we can align our energy with what we want to achieve.
As a Touch For Health Instructor I offer training in TFH levels1 - 4. This training is available for lay people wishing to learn how to support their own and their family's health and well-being. The training also serves as the introductory course for those wishing to become a professional TFH Practitioner and TFH 1 and 2 are often a requirement for further training in other Kinesiology disciplines.
We process our life experiences through our emotions – how something makes us feel. These feelings then create our belief systems, which form how we perceive situations, life etc. These perceptions underlie the decisions we make or don't make. If a belief system becomes too rigid, it can become “stuck” and we too then become stuck, unable, for instance, to deal constructively with a challenging situation and move through it . Kinesiology can help us to recognise and let go of such restrictions and to perceive the different options available to us.