The Lauren Berry Method® of Lymphatic Massage
While western medicine recently 'discovered' the importance of the lymphatic system, eastern medicine appears to have been recognizing and working with the lymphatic system for centuries. The lymphatic systems' participation in disease pathogenesis can often appear poorly understood when considered via the western approach... Lauren's approach and protocols help fill in some of those gaps.
A unique approach
His parents, Joanna and Adam, brought two-year-old Jacob to me. Recent success with Jacob’s grandfather, Bugs, led the grandparents to recommend massage therapy for Jacob’s respiratory problems.
The late Roger Bliss had introduced me to the Lauren Berry Method® of Message Therapy. After Roger’s death, Taum Sayers traveled from Truckee, California to North Carolina periodically to offer this unique therapy and teach classes. I had recently completed the lymphatic class under Taum, and Mary, Jacob’s grandmother, hoped that something could be done to help her grandson.
Jacob, diagnosed with suspected Cystic Fibrosis, had been hospitalized seven times for pneumonia in his brief two years. His blood oxygen levels were so low that, when he slept, his lips would turn blue, making his mother constantly fearful. He had very little appetite. The local hospital had sent Jacob home and advised Joanna that there was little more that could be done to alleviate Jacob’s condition.
Making no promises, I agreed to work on Jacob. I did a lymphatic chest drain and massaged his back to widen the spaces between his ribs – intending to increase his lung capacity. During the procedure, his lips turned pink, and his breathing became noticeably easier. He went home, ate three hot dogs, and, according to his grandmother, still has good color. She reported that he hasn't had a sniffle in the two months since our session.
At the time, I was dismayed that Jacob cried loudly during the treatment. In retrospect, his crying probably helped open his lungs and assisted in the healing process.
Only one session was needed to increase Jacob’s oxygen intake and to alleviate the constant fear of his parents.
(Folks, this is an excellent example of why I'm in this trade.)
From a student that took this class with Lynn Van Norman, a certified Berry Method® Practitioner, and Teacher.
Melanie is a physical therapist practicing in Eugene, OR.
After taking Lynn’s Lymphatic class, Melanie reports:
As a home health professional, I frequently encounter complex lung and lymphedema situations involving dyspnea (difficulty breathing). After learning Lauren’s vacuum technique in Lynn's informative Lymphedema management class, I applied it to a woman with heart failure and an acute episode of shortness of breath. Within three pumps, she was "90%" improved and stunned at its simplicity and effectiveness. She asked me to teach her family to perform it as it gave her such relief, which I happily did. I am so glad to have learned this simple, non-invasive method that brings so much relief. I also use the Decongestion massage regularly and highly recommend this great class. Thanks Lynn!
A new client presented with swelling and inflammation surrounding a recent left knee replacement. With knowledge of the body's hydraulic system and applying hydraulic engineering principles, my hunch was the trauma of the surgery had compromised circulation and had affected his new knee. I applied the techniques and protocols for opening the gateways near his abdomen and hips. Within 10 minutes, the inflammation and swelling had noticeably decreased. Once again, this work comes in handy.
Thank you, Lauren.
Hi everyone my name is Shelly Beale. I'm a licensed massage therapist in Idaho... I have known Taum for about 7 years, and I've been to several of his classes. The lymphatic drainage class is one of my favorites. I have taken this class twice and use the information a lot.
About four years ago I was taking a class with Taum... I don't remember which one but I had gone into class and was upset. My teacher Sue and Taum had noticed how upset I was.. they both asked me what was wrong I explained I had a mammogram earlier that day I had to go back and have another one...two in one day..... The doctor decided I needed a biopsy the following Monday on a lump they had found. Taum did the lymphatic work on my stomach and arms, and proceeded to show me how to do the breast drain on myself, which I have shown several women. I love it!!!! I believe it helped me.. from Friday evening when he showed me the breast drain I did it on myself on Saturday and Sunday I did it again on Monday morning before we went to talk to the doctor, we decided not to do the biopsy but to do surgery and take the whole entire lump out... they did another mammogram and found that it had gotten smaller from Friday's mammogram. 5 days later we did the surgery and in that 5 days time it had gone down more than what the first mammogram showed.
So in my own experience, I truly believe in the lymphatic drainage. Like I said it's one I truly use a lot and believe it has helped me... and I've seen it work on others. Taum and his work are amazing. ❤
November 8, 2007
This year, in your concern that another gifted woman had perished from breast cancer, you explained a technique that you called a "breast drain" that any woman could do to encourage drainage and removal of toxins from the breast tissue and glands. For several decades in the offices of several personal physicians (I have moved several times), I had heard expressions of concern during manual breast exams because of suspicious lumpiness within the tissue of my breasts. I would be repeatedly called back after a mammogram to have additional testing done.
A biopsy was never required but there was always the nagging sense that something needed to be carefully watched. There was also always a painfulness that I accepted as "normal". The doctors determined that I had a cystic condition in both breasts. During my most recent exam, however, after only a few months of applying the technique you explained, my doctor seemed quite pleasantly surprised that the tissue seemed much smoother. In fact, she did not mention a cystic content and even declared that the tissue condition was like that of a much younger woman. Now that is something that every older woman appreciates hearing! Best of all, the painfulness I had tried to ignore for so many years has virtually disappeared. I have passed your information along to both my daughters. So, you see, your good influence continues beyond the immediate sphere in which you do your therapeutic work.
The lymphatic system influences functional health throughout the body.
One of Lauren Berry's many contributions to manual therapy was in acknowledging the importance of the body's hydraulic components and the relationship to musculoskeletal influences. Through recognizing, respecting, and responding to this well-designed organization, therapists can often aid in restoring health and reducing tensions rather quickly.
These techniques are also useful for addressing:
- Reducing edema and local swelling
- Stimulating a slow digestive system
- Stimulating a sluggish immune system
- Reducing congestion
- Supporting immunity
- Enhancing skin health
- Inducing deep relaxation
- Decreasing scar tissue and adhesions
There are several approaches to working with the Lymphatic system via massage.
Comments I often hear concerning other approaches to working with the Lymphatic system are:
Other training's often seem overwhelming with technical information.
There is no coordination with visceral work.
How can such a light touch be effective?
The students do not use the technique.
Yes, I also present technical information; my experience has been that spending toooo much class time in that mode can often clog up the thinking process and detracts from true learning. Our 2-day focus is on learning and understanding the principles and protocols, you can go further into the technical details as you continue with your practice. The handout supplies extensive information that can serve you in that respect.
You will be guided through the visceral work. This technique understands that for the lymph to flow, it needs a place to FLOW TO!!!
I have not studied or practiced techniques that set absolute boundaries on pressure; my goal is to apply pressure suitable to the body's needs. Affecting the lymphatic drainage down to the periosteum's requirements (in my humble opinion) is not adequately achieved with a feather-like touch. Likewise, it does not require heavy pressure to stimulate lymphatic drainage through the thoracic region. Lauren often reminded us:
To quote Lauren:
'Don't give a little old lady a truck driver treatment'!!!
Each time I teach this class, I receive feedback similar to this:
"Thank you for coming and teaching the Upper Body Lymph class on Saturday.
I did a session with my 87-year-old mother on Sunday.
She said that she had been constipated.
Well, a few hours after the treatment she began eliminating and continued into Monday.
Wow! It worked!"
Techniques for stimulating healthy lymphatic include:
- Opening the primary drains and gateways.
- Manually stimulating the visceral components using safe, gentle methods for encouraging the digestive process (an important component in the Lymph system!)
- Accessing and encouraging the bodies' repair mechanisms.
- Recognizing adaptive compensation.
- Addressing the lymphatic component within varicose veins.
- Spinal decompression technique. (While we are using Castor Oil)
Note: This class includes Lymphatic drainage techniques that do not require oil, simply an educated touch.
The body is approximately 60% fluid.
This 13 hr advanced bodywork/massage class focuses on Lauren's approach to manual lymphatic drainage. These procedures respect and respond to the hydraulic and structural components within the Lymphatic system and can aid in reducing the symptoms of colds, constipation, asthma, emphysema, bronchitis, altitude sickness, and pneumonia. The healthy functioning of the lymphatic system is vital to the body's ability to function at peak performance and continue its ongoing maintenance and repair requirements. The lymphatic system plays a vital role in moving fluids, regenerating tissue, filtering out toxins, and aids the body in maintaining a healthy immune system. When lymph circulation is compromised, toxins accumulate and cellular functioning is diminished. Compromised circulation can often be a significant component within many physical ailments.
There is a fine line separating the Lymph and Interstitial fluid.
Both of these fluids bathe and surround the body's cells enabling them to deliver nutrients and carry away waste.
This approach addresses both ...several of my clients that receive this refer to it as their annual 'OIL CHANGE'.
- Basic Massage or other bodywork license/certificate.
Check back for registration information.
firstname.lastname@example.org or call: 530-587-9356
"Taum Sayers is approved by the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork (NCBTMB) as a continuing education provider.
Provider # 152386-00"
From David William's Alternatives Newsletter. Scroll down to his info on the Lymphatic system.
Dr. David G. Williams -- ALTERNATIVES http://www.electroherbalism.com/Naturopathy/Therapies/Diet/FatsandOils/CastorOil.htm
"The Colon Health Handbook" by Robert Grey
"The Berry Method® approach supposes that the colon is the principal organ through which mucoid matter from the lymph is eliminated. So says Robert Grey, who continues: "The idea came to me from the deceased Lauren Berry, who was perhaps the greatest of all manipulative healers of our time. He taught a technique called lymph drain massage, which he credits to have originated from ancient Chinese medicine. Lymph drain massage is to be performed whenever there is an acute sickness, such as a cold, fever, flu, etc. Not long after receiving a lymph drain massage, a person will often have a bowel movement in which large quantities of pale colored mucoid substance is passed. Furthermore, when the sinuses of chest areas of the respiratory system are congested, this effect is more likely to be produced together with substantial relief from the congestion; it is as if a stopper were pulled and the mucus congestion in the respiratory system actually drains out through the colon." Grey goes on to say, "I later discovered the same benefits and effects as lymph drain massage pioneered by a Dr. Emil Vodder of Denmark."
The science of anatomy reveals that the walls of the colon contain microscopic lymph vessels which combine into larger vessels that empty into the cisterna chili, which is a central lymphatic pool located in the abdomen. Lymph from the small intestines, back, and lower body also empties into the cisterna chyli. The cisterna chili is the origin of the thoracic duct, which travels up the body and connects with the bloodstream slightly below and to the left of the base of the neck. Through the thoracic duct, lymph from all parts of the body, except the right arm, empty into the bloodstream. Most physiology textbooks state that the lymph flows only in one direction - away from the colon and other tissues, into the cisterna chyli, and from there back into the bloodstream through the thoracic duct. How then can we account for the large amounts of a pale mucoid substance subject to be present in the colon after lymph drain massage or skin brushing?
In my research to answer this question, I discovered three scientific facts:
First, a Dr. Olszewski of Poland has observed with the use of scientific instruments that the kind of stimulation to body surfaces provided by skin brushing does, in fact, stimulate the flow of lymph.
Second, the lymph can and does undergo retrograde flow, which is a flow in the direction opposite to that which is considered normal.
Third, a particular type of retrograde flow called chylous reflux has been observed wherein lymph flows from the cisterna chyli back into the colon or other body tissues. Chylous reflux to date has only been medically observed when the body is under the stress of disease. This is not surprising, however, because medical science concerns itself on with disease states."
"The Colon Health Handbook" by Robert Grey