Kinesiology is a non-invasive holistic energy therapy, combining the ancient principles of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) with modern muscle monitoring techniques. Kinesiology uses muscle-testing techniques to gain an insight into the areas of stress and imbalance within the energy system. It is based upon the premise that any issues within an energy system will eventually be reflected in the body.
On this page, we’ll give you a general overview of kinesiology; how it can help and what to expect in a session.
What is kinesiology?
Kinesiology uses a range of gentle, yet effective techniques. Depending on the client’s individual needs, the methods applied in the kinesiology session will vary according to your practitioner and their particular specialism. All modalities use muscle testing to find the main stressors and determine the appropriate corrections to make. These may be on a physical level, such as emotional issues, a chemical imbalance or dietary changes.
In kinesiology, the energy system is believed to be one complete unit. This unit is made up of different parts that all interconnect, react and affect one another. The theory is common among many complementary and alternative therapies - most of which have a holistic view, whereby it is thought that everything we do has an impact on the system as a whole.
A holistic approach
This holistic approach considers the possibility that one problem may lead to another. Because of this, therapies with this approach look at the complete person instead of focusing on identifying and treating symptoms.
While the approach, theory and techniques will differ between each practitioner, there are two theories that are central in many complementary and alternative therapies, particularly in the practice of kinesiology. These theories are energy meridians and the Triad of Health.
In TCM, the body is represented as a balance of two forces - yin and yang. While in some cultures, yin and yang are perceived to be symbols of good and bad, they are also represented as an example of how opposites can only exist in relation to the other. According to Chinese medicine, when these two opposing forces become unbalanced, the effects can result in a blockage in the flow of our life energy or qi.
This energy is believed to circulate continuously throughout the body, using pathways known as our ‘meridian system’. This is a system made up of various individual meridians (vital organs) that represent either yin or yang.
The 12 primary paired meridians are as follows:
- Stomach meridian (yang) flows to the Spleen meridian (yin)
- Heart meridian (yin) flows to the Small Intestine meridian (yang)
- Bladder meridian (yang) flows to the Kidney meridian (yin)
- Pericardium meridian (yin) flows to Triple Warmer meridian (yang)
- Gallbladder meridian (yang) flows to the Liver meridian (yin)
- Lung meridian (yin) flows to the Large Intestine meridian (yang)
In TCM, symptoms of various illnesses and ailments are believed to be the result of a disrupted or unbalanced energy movement through the body’s meridians.
The Triad of Health
Depending on the branch of kinesiology used, some practitioners will approach health and wellness using a system known as the Triad of Health. The triad is represented by an equilateral triangle with physical and structural health forming the base. Chemical and diet represent one side and mental and emotional health represents the other.
When a person begins to experience a health problem, it is believed to be caused by an imbalance in these factors. All of these need to be considered in order to identify the cause of the problem. The techniques involved in kinesiology allow practitioners to evaluate the balance of the triad. They can then trace the problem back to the cause and help the energy system repair itself.
Despite there being various branches of kinesiology, the key tool used within all practices of kinesiology is muscle testing (also known as muscle monitoring). Muscle testing is used to gain a response from the muscle, which the kinesiologist hopes will provide them with an insight into the meridian system.
The muscle testing aspect of kinesiology is relatively transferable. It is common for it to be applied, expanded upon and incorporated into other therapy forms.
Generally, your kinesiologist will position a limb so that one of the muscles is in a contracted position. Gentle pressure is then applied, which you will be asked to match. The muscle will either remain contracted or it may unlock. This muscle response will lead your kinesiologist to determine what the priority stressors or imbalances are, before deciding how to address them.
The aim of the exercise is not to test strength, but instead to see how responsive the muscle is to additional pressure. At no stage should muscle testing cause any kind of pain or discomfort.
As with any kind of alternative or complementary therapy, kinesiology is not a substitute for seeing a medical professional. If you have a concern or injury, it is important to consult your GP before seeking holistic treatment.
Since it was developed in the 1960s, kinesiology has evolved and developed into a much bigger practice. The term now covers not just the original form, but various other healing modalities.
Kinesiology practitioners can also choose to learn and specialise in more than one form of kinesiology. The differing forms generally all involve muscle testing, but each will vary in technique.
Some of the branches recognised by the Kinesiology Federation include:
- classical kinesiology
- creative kinesiology
- educational kinesiology
- health kinesiology
- progressive kinesiology
- wellness kinesiology
The benefits of kinesiology
Kinesiology aims to restore balance to the whole person by promoting the self-healing process. Each of the kinesiology modalities will have its own health benefits and how you are affected will depend on your situation, your practitioner and the treatment you receive.
- Educational kinesiology is said to help improve sports performance and self-development.
- Health kinesiology has been reported to help boost self-confidence and improve a person’s ability to focus and stay motivated.
- Creative kinesiology works with energy to help people overcome aches, pains, lack of confidence, fatigue, life frustration and lack of fulfilment or purpose.
- Wellness kinesiology works to combine emotional issues with nutritional and structural elements. It is thought that combining these factors helps to bring the mind and body into a state of wellness.
What to expect from a kinesiology session
During your first session, your kinesiologist will ask you a series of questions. This is so they can understand why you have come for treatment and what you hope to gain from the therapy. Next, they will take some time to compile a comprehensive case history. This includes details of any current or previous injuries you may have, your lifestyle, diet and current emotional state.
The first session will often also involve a demonstration of muscle testing, during which your kinesiologist will explain to you what they are doing, why they are doing it and the effect it should have.
At the end of the session, your kinesiologist may recommend some lifestyle changes and self-care tips, such as managing stress. They may also suggest specific exercises for you to practise at home before your next session. These suggestions are intended to help maintain any positive changes that may have occurred during the session.
The number of sessions you will need will depend on the issue you want to overcome and how long you have been experiencing the problem. The first session will often last between one to two hours, though this may vary.
How can I find a qualified kinesiologist?
Currently, there are no laws in place to stipulate a level of training a person must have in order to practice kinesiology. For this reason, it is important to ensure they have received the necessary training and experience.
Here at Therapy Directory, we created a proof policy. This is to ensure all practitioners listed with us have provided proof of training or membership with a recognised body. We believe in the importance of finding a practitioner that you feel comfortable with. To help you on your journey, we encourage our members to fill their profiles with as much information as possible. This way you can learn more about them and the way they work.
Thank you to the Kinesiology Federation for their help compiling this fact-sheet.
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