by Shanti Rae Lobaugh
You might be wondering: What exactly is Zero Balancing? This is a question I’m asked quite often. When answering, I like to toss out a question of my own: What do you think it means to be completely balanced? Visualizations of “balance” might include a gymnast perched confidently on a beam or a ballerina spinning gracefully on her toe. While these are great examples, I once read a really powerful analogy of what it looks like when several elements are in perfect balance and it has to do with sailing. If you’ve ever been on a sailboat or watched one sail by, you’ve witnessed a symbiotic relationship among wind, water and structure. As every sailor knows, in order to sail smoothly, the sails and hull (or “structure”) must be in correct alignment with the wind and water currents. Once these forces are balanced or aligned, the boat will sail right along–practically on its own.
The same is true for our bodies. When our skeleton (another “structure”) is balanced or in alignment with our flow of energy, we are more able to sail along smoothly, with little to no effort. You may know that the flow of energy is constantly moving through our bodies, but it might surprise you to learn that it also flows through our bones. In fact, our bones are great conductors of energy. Ligaments further help move energy along by connecting the bones to one another. When a ligament is either too loose or too tight, it is unable to allow the flow of energy to move through that joint and into surrounding bones, tissues and/or organs. Initially we may not notice this energetic block, but over time as discomfort sets in, our bodies clearly signal us that something is out of balance.
Zero Balancing (frequently referred to as “ZB”) addresses and corrects this imbalance through a specialized therapy. Dr. Fritz Smith developed the practice in the early 1970s, when his lifelong fascination with the healing power of touch and the Eastern view of energy crystallized with the Western view of science and medicine. Basically, a ZB session is a hands-on body/mind therapy that lasts 40 to 50 minutes and is administered on a massage table while the client wears comfortable, loose-fitting clothing. By using finger pressure and gentle traction, the practitioner creates “fulcrums” along the skeleton and joints where tension is held. Fulcrums in this context are points of balance where change and reorganization can occur as pressure is applied. Simply put, ZB restores the relationship between the human energy field and skeletal structure through touch. This innovative therapy is a potent way to help restore the body’s flow of energy, leaving the client feeling relaxed, renewed and rebalanced.
As a ZB practitioner for 11 years, I have found it to be successful in relieving body aches and pains, restoring range of motion and movement, reducing emotional distress and improving one’s overall quality of life. I believe that when we’re balanced, we just feel better and often experience increased mental clarity, ease of movement and decreased discomfort and pain. In other words, when our structure and energy are in alignment, we can expect smooth sailing.
If you’d like to “set sail” toward smoother waters by learning more about ZB, contact Ashland Holistic Health. I’m very excited to be booking ZB clients this fall and look forward to joining Jenn and Molly in supporting our community’s wellness, one body at a time.