What is Osteopathy?
Updated: Sep 7
Dr. Kirstie Bender Segarra, PhD
August 31, 2023
As we just pass through a Blue Moon here in Taos, New Mexico I have the honor to continue my inquiry into osteopath—a field of practice that has chosen me in so many ways. Osteopathy is a meeting of manual therapy with somatic and natural inquiry to the field of wellness and living in health. It has a rich history I write about in my thesis for Doctorate of Osteopathy, which is available below to download for those who are interested. To practice “10 finger osteopathy” has become a rare practitioner with the onslaught of allopathic practices of medicine. The ability to palpate, listen and hold space for our patients is indeed unique and a small handful of skilled manual osteopaths practice in the United States, there are 5 of us in New Mexico.
Ironically, the founder of Osteopathy, Dr. Andrew Taylor Still started the school in Kirksville, Missouri. But now, manual osteopathy is taught outside of the United Stated in Canada and Europe as the American schools focus more on turning out medical doctors that are willing to fit into the mainstream medicine model. I bring this up as to “treat for health” is a principle of osteopathy. We have a unique lens of seeing and being in the world. We can recognize the disease process and see the health in the patient’s system simultaneously. We practice a field that nature is the cure, the body is self-organizing, and healing mechanism of the body are primary.
I have written about my healing philosophy and so many other subjects around the topic of osteopathy that I highly encourage you to go down the rabbit hole of my Blog posts. I am of Celtic and Afro-indigenous descent from enslaved peoples as well as a long history of ancestry here in the United States and Canada. The healing arts is in my blood as I have walked this earth for 55 years exploring multiple methods of healing and inquiry. Osteopathy holds all the modalities I practice. It is the larger umbrella of inquiry that I am passionate about.
In the meantime, I look forward to our relation.
Om Shanti Om,
My Osteopathic Thesis feel free to download: