by Jill N. Henry, Ed.D., PT, APP
Scope of Medical Practice
Medicine today is still practiced, for the most part, under the beliefs of Isaac Newton and others, who believed that the body is made up of isolated parts, like a machine. These parts connect with each other physically and biochemically, but have no underlying essence. Communication to and from the mind occurs as a happenstance of chemical transmissions and receptions. In current medical practice, the patient is a victim of some external, mechanical disease or trauma. There is little a patient can do for themselves and certainly no way for the mechanism of transformation to occur. But what if the physics of Einstein were applied to the body? We would see that there are no separate parts, but an amazing web of energy which is both "particle and wave", a solid can instantaneously be transformed into flow, and back again. Dr. Deepak Chopra is one of many physicians who are exploring the implications of this new, quantum physics. Dr. Chopra has even termed the phrase "quantum, mechanical body" to represent this amazing flow of energy, which can instantaneously transform dis-ease into wellness. If the body is not solid, but a quantum web of space and energy, then new approaches to treatment are called for, to tap into this amazing energy potential for transformation.
Dr. Stone and Polarity Therapy
Dr. Randolph Stone, D.O., D.C. (1890-1981) was both a Doctor of Osteopathy and a Chiropractor and was vitally interested in the "essence", the "energy" underlying the physical body. He wanted to know what preceded disease on an energy level. He felt that this energy actually made the form, and that this energy was universal and used by everyone. He studied various Eastern and Western belief systems and systems of healing, including Ayurvedic practices of ancient times. It was his conclusion that this universal energy, "Qi", "Chi" or vital life force comes from the same Universal Source, and is damped down in individuals in a series of stages or flows of current. These current flows, from less dense to more dense he termed: Ether, Air, Fire, Water, and Earth. In order to flow from somewhere to somewhere, Dr. Stone discovered that the energy was polarized. That is, contained a positive pole, a neutral pole, and a negative pole in the body’s tissues, organs, and etheric (energy) structures. Dr. Stone concluded that blocks in the energy flow occur as a result of mental and physical trauma and misuse, and that with certain hands on techniques, mental techniques, diet, and exercise, these blocks could be opened, allowing energy to flow freely through the system. Dr. Stone believed that these energy blocks preceded disease. and when treated more closely, approached the cause of a problem, rather than a masking of the patient’s symptoms with medications and surgeries.
Dr. Stone set out to teach other medical professionals about this new way to approach healing. His legacy includes: The American Polarity Therapy Association, which certifies instructors to conduct Associate Polarity Practitioner (APP) training (155 hours) and Registered Polarity Practitioner (RPP) training (615 hours).
Polarity Therapy is practiced in nontraditional or alternative wellness settings. Because Polarity Therapy is not diagnostic or invasive in nature, physician referral is not required. (Clients are encouraged to discuss this form of therapy with their physicians.) Polarity Therapy is practiced within the guidelines of the American Polarity Therapy Association. It is not covered by the majority of insurance companies and HMO’s at this time.
In essence, Polarity Therapy is a unique combination of massage, therapeutic touch and reflexology. During a Polarity Therapy session, the practitioner will touch, press, and connect various body parts with one another. This touching and pressing are in a specific sequence of events, designed to connect negative and positive currents in the body tissues to remove blocks and free the flow of vital energy. This energy is what underlies all body functions. It is what disappears when the body is no longer living, while tissues, bones and blood remain. The results of a Polarity session include: overall sense of well-being, muscle relaxation, increased circulation to tissues and vital organs, and a cleansing of toxins and blocks from the body system.
Example of a Polarity Session
The client is relaxed, lying fully clothed on a massage table. The practitioner begins by massaging the client’s neck muscles and balancing cranio-sacral rhythms. Next, the practitioner moves to the feet, performing a gentle foot massage, looking for sore spots. According to polarity reflexology, the foot ( also the hand and the ear) contains reflexes to all the organs and structures in the body. For example, a sore spot at the base of the great toe usually means tightness and soreness in the neck. In addition, each toe ( and finger) represent a polarity element and an electromagnetic charge. Identifying sore spots guides the practitioner to areas that most need balancing. The feet represent chronic conditions in these area, the hands, acute. So the practitioner then moves to the hands, massaging and looking again for sore spots. The remaining treatment deals with balancing the negative and positive poles of the unbalanced areas. Gentle to firm pressure is applied to appropriate places on the client’s torso, front and back, depending on the blocks noted. For example, if it were noted that the second toe ( or finger) was sore, and corresponding soreness was found in the shoulders, kidneys or ankles, the Air Principle might be at work. The practitioner then would use gentle balancing techniques to restore harmony to those areas, with the effect of reducing pain and tension and enhancing function. The session is concluded with overall balancing techniques and suggestions for diet, exercise and positive thinking to assist in maintaining the balance. Rarely does a client need more than 3 sessions, spaced at least 2 weeks apart, for the balancing to be lasting. Often, one or two sessions are enough. There are no "weekly appointments for a year" with Polarity Therapy.
Polarity Therapy is complimentary to current medical practice. If a vital force or energy underlies all bodily functions, then balancing the flow of this energy will assist in the maintenance of health and in the recovery from disease or trauma. It must never be an either/or decision, to go to a Doctor or Physical Therapist or to a Polarity Practitioner. Instead, a polarity session will contribute toward overall improved health and function which is the goal of all health care providers.
ConclusionsWhen working as a Polarity Practitioner, I facilitate the flow of energy to enhance vitality and well-being, which also leads to the improvement of function. In the former, I work with the gross physical body and the mind; in the latter, with the subtle energy body and the spirit. Polarity Therapy provides me with the next step towards transformation. We are all physical, mental, and spiritual beings, searching for fulfillment in all three areas. Polarity Therapy is a valuable tool in that search.
Chopra, Deepak, M.D. Quantum Healing.
Maslow, Abraham, The Farther Reaches of Human Nature.
Stone, Randolph, D.C., D. O. Polarity Therapy
About the Author:
Dr. Jill Henry, EdD, PT, APP is author of the new book by Llewellyn, Energy SourceBook – The Fundamentals of Personal Energy. She is founder, with her husband Charlie, of Mountain Valley Center metastore and the Otto Labyrinth Park in Otto, NC. She is webmaster for http://www.mountainvalleycenter.com , an Associate Polarity Practitioner, a Grant Consultant for Allied Health programs in the SE USA and developer and presenter of CEU workshops for nurses, physical therapists and massage therapists http://www.mountainvalleycenter.com/flow.htm