Ortho-Bionomy® is an osteopathically-based therapy for the body. Those using Ortho-Bionomy® are treated by trained practitioners, who gently and non-invasively move the body into positions that promote natural healing. The therapy is also said to help the body correct itself of structural imbalances, bad posture and chronic stress. This method of treatment is as philosophical as it is medical, deriving from the homeopathic theory that the body best knows how to correct itself, and thus the best therapy is that which aids the body's self-healing abilities.
Ortho-Bionomy® is said to be able to help with a wide range of problems. It can alleviate chronic pain as well as manage short-term pain. Even those without injuries may find relief in the therapy's ability to help correct posture and reduce stress. People who undergo treatment may also find that they learn techniques that can be self-applied at home. By reducing stress, the therapy is said to also help with one's emotional, spiritual and mental well-being.
Ortho-Bionomy® was created by a British osteopath named Dr. Arthur Lincoln Pauls. Pauls named his method of therapy Ortho-Bionomy®, a name whose etymological roots describe the main tenets of the treatment. "Ortho" means correct, "bio" is life and "nomy" means the study of something. When put together, Ortho-Bionomy® literally means the correct study of life. Dr. Pauls intended the name to convey that his therapy is one which correctly aids the body in taking its natural course. His theory purported that, if one first worked with the body's natural self-healing processes, full recoveries and healthy lifestyles would be more effectively achieved.
Ortho-Bionomy® practitioners do not force a person's body into any uncomfortable positions. If the patient feels any discomfort, he or she is moved into a more relaxing position. The idea behind this is that the body's joints and muscles are able to move comfortably in such a way as to allow the body to heal itself. The practitioner gently moves a person's body into such positions, taking cues from the patient.
The practice is really less about the practitioner healing the patient, and more about the practitioner helping to stimulate the patient's body into remembering how to best take care of itself. In that sense, the practice is almost as spiritual and philosophical as it is physical, sharing many of the same holistic viewpoints that belong to many Eastern therapies. Anyone can train to become a practitioner of Ortho-Bionomy®. There are various levels of training programs; one can choose to become an advanced practitioner, or go for more basic training.