The Forgotten Techniques of William Garner Sutherland DO
During William Garner Sutherland’s first 30 years in practice he employed a variety of direct techniques. Some were developed based upon his personal observations of patients experiencing lingering symptoms of the 1918 Influenza pandemic. He theorized that their symptoms were caused by a tissue tension problem which he dubbed “anterior tensity”. He reasoned that increased tension impeded fluid flow. His mechanically-based approach— the subject of this workshop— was aimed at restoring optimal fluid flow—venous and lympathic.
This workshop brings William Garner Sutherland and his pre-cranial ideas to life. Following the presentation of a colourful biographical sketch of WGS an explanation of the physiological consequences caused by influenza and pneumonia is offered. Then, Sutherland’s observation of “anterior tensity” is explained. To remedy this abnormal tension and its far reaching effects, 30 of Sutherland’s rarely taught techniques are demonstrated and practiced. Amongst the regions of his primary focus are the thorax (spine, ribs, and diaphragm), pelvis (boney and visceral), neck (boney and visceral), lumbar (mainly muscular), and shoulder girdle (scapula and clavicle). Of great interest and importance will be how Sutherland was able to trace anterior tensity into the cranium.
Once the bodily anterior tensity is lessened, Sutherland turned his attention to the cranium. In this area, his brilliance as an osteopath is evident. In his view, (non-trauma initiated) cranial inertia resulted from the cranium’s excessive expansion. In turn the expansion caused tension of the membranes, ultimately leading to fluid stasis. The reason for this will be explained in the workshop.
His techniques are simple in application yet powerful in results. Ideas on how to employ WGS’s approach in current day practice will be the shared.
About Jane Eliza Stark, MS, DOMP (Can)
Jane Eliza Stark, MS, RKin, CAT (C), D.O.M.P., Canada
Jane is the author of a recently published biography of William Garner Sutherland; Journeyman, William Garner Sutherland: The Formative Years (1873-1900). She is recognised internationally as an osteopathic historiographer, author, and workshop leader on Sutherland’s early approach & techniques, a fluidic approach to treating connective tissue, and much more.
Jane is an osteopathic manual practitioner, trained and practicing in Canada. Jane holds an undergraduate degree from the University of Guelph in Biology (1980) and a Master’s degree from Walden University in Clinical Research Administration (2014). She also holds diplomas from Sheridan College in Sports Injury Management (1990)., the College D’études Superior in Somatotheraphy (2001), and the Canadian College of Osteopathy, in Osteopathy (2003). Atman College in Sophia France bestowed the honorary degree of Honoris Causa to Jane in 2008.
Jane has been practicing as a certified Athletic Therapist since 1991, and as an Osteopathic Manual Practitioner since 2003. She is also a registered kinesiologist. She currently serves on the faculty of three osteopathic colleges, the Japanese Traditional Osteopathic College in Kobe Japan, the Canadian College of Osteopathy with campuses in Toronto and Winnipeg and the Collège d’Études Ostéopathiques with campuses in Vancouver and Halifax. She has served on the Board of Directors for the World Osteopathy Health Organisation and she is the current Director of Student Research at the Canadian College of Osteopathy, a position she has held since 2004. She has a private practice in southern Ontario.