Craniosacral therapy has descended from osteopathic medicine and medical doctors. Dr. Andrew Taylor Still was a surgeon during the civil war. He noticed that the orthodox medical practices of his day were frequently ineffective and sometimes harmful. Dr. Still devoted the next thirty years of his life to studying the human body and finding alternative ways to treat disease. He was one of the first physicians of his day to promote the idea of preventive medicine and the philosophy that physicians should focus on treating the disease rather than just the symptoms.

In 1874 Dr. Still founded the American School of Osteopathy. Dr. William Garner Sutherland was a senior student at ASO in 1899. Dr. Sutherland realized from observing a dismembered skull that the " bones bevelled like the gills of a fish for a primary respiration". From his studies Dr. Sutherland discovered the "five essential aspects of the primary respiratory system" the foundation for CST.

In 1939 he was published and had started trainings. Other teachers of influence since have been: Dr. Rolyn Becker, Dr. Robert Fulford, Dr. John Upledger, Franklyn Sills and Roger Gilchrist.
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