Research and Reading

Links to Relevant Reading and Research

Crooked Angels

Crooked Angels traces how memories of terror and neglect from childhood became stored in a woman’s muscles. A fit, healthy and successful journalist wakes one summer’s morning to discover something is terribly wrong, unable to move she is seized by a cage of pain. Her condition defies diagnosis until she enlists the help of a wise osteopath who begins to uncover the history and terror from her past which her body has stored and remembered for her. ‘The story of your life, your history is written in your body.’ In a personal account of the link between past and present, body and mind, the author gradually discovers the root of the illness. As forgotten memories and old injuries are slowly unlocked so too does the body begin to recover. This startling narrative tells of recovery through persistence, a change of heart, and the beautifully captured voice of a frightened – and irrepressible – child.

Comment: I recently read Carol Lee’s book. There are striking similarities between our stories to recovery through Osteopathy. I made contact with Carol and I am very proud to say that she supports the work of the Highland Chronic Pain and Whiplash Centre and joins us in our campaign to raise awareness of the benefits of Osteopathic and Mindfulness treatment in the treatment of trauma. I feel this book will resonate with most people who find their way to this Centre, hence why I have placed it at the top of this reading list. Carol has very kindly offered her book at a reduced price of £5 to anyone enrolling on our Treatment Course. Several of the quotations on this website are taken from this book.

– Alison Salter, The Highland Chronic Pain and Whiplash Centre Founder and Manager


Research and ReadingMindfulness for Health: A practical guide to relieving pain, reducing stress and restoring wellbeing


Pain, suffering and stress can be intolerable – but it doesn’t have to be this way.
Mindfulness for Health reveals a series of simple practices that you can incorporate into your daily life to relieve chronic pain and the suffering and stress of illness. Clinical trials show that mindfulness meditation can be as effective as prescription painkillers and also enhances the body’s natural healing systems. Mindfulness can also reduce the anxiety, depression, irritability, exhaustion and insomnia that can arise from chronic pain and illness.
Mindfulness for Health is based on a unique meditation programme developed by Vidyamala Burch to help her cope with the severe pain of spinal injury. Taught at Breathworks in the UK – and its affiliates around the world – this programme has helped tens of thousands of people cope with pain, illness and stress. Breathworks’ pioneering approach is praised by Professor Mark Williams of Oxford University, Jon Kabat-Zinn and Professor Lance McCracken of King’s College London.
The eight-week programme at the heart of this book takes just 10-20 minutes per day. It is particularly effective for the biggest causes of pain – back problems, arthritis, migraine and diabetes but works equally well for cancer (and its associated chemotherapy), heart disease, fibromyalgia, celiac disease, lupus, chronic fatigue syndrome, IBS, labour pain and even tinnitus. You will be surprised by how quickly your suffering melts away, leaving you able to live life to the full again.

Comment: This is the book which accompanies our Introductory Breathworks-based Mindfulness for Pain Management Course.

– Alison Salter, The Highland Chronic Pain and Whiplash Centre Founder and Manager

Living Well With Pain And Illness: Using mindfulness to free yourself from suffering: The Mindful Way to Free Yourself from Suffering

Vidyamala Burch has suffered with chronic pain for over 30 years due to congenital weakness, a car accident and unsuccessful surgery. She is now a wheelchair user. In this positive and reassuring new book, she identifies that it is our resistance to pain which causes it to be so distressing and miserable. We don’t want it to be happening to us, and we wish we weren’t experiencing it. 

LIVING WELL WITH PAIN AND ILLNESS is a practical guide to living with and managing chronic pain through the principle of mindfulness. By developing a calm awareness of your body and your pain, you can learn to let go of the frustration and suffering that you associate the pain with, and the pain will reduce.Vidyamala Burch uses easy-to follow breathing techniques and powerful mindfulness meditations which teach you how to live in the present moment. LIVING WELL WITH PAIN AND ILLNESS includes helpful illustrations, offers effective ways of managing chronic pain and is a must-read for all sufferers.

You Are the Placebo: Making Your Mind Matter

In You Are the Placebo, Dr Joe Dispenza – a world leading neuroscientist – explores the history, the science and the practical applications of the so-called placebo effect.  Is it possible to heal by thought alone – without drugs or surgery? The truth is that it happens more often than you might think. The many amazing cases studies will empower you to personally use ‘the expectation of a particular outcome’ to alter your internal states – as well as external reality – solely through the action of your mind. You Are The Placebo combines the latest research in neuroscience, biology, psychology, hypnosis, behavioural conditioning and quantum physics to demystify the workings of the placebo effect…and show how the seemingly impossible can become possible.

Comment: Dr Joe Dispenza is renowned for healing his partially paralysed body following a motorbike accident, solely through the power of the mind. Day by day, he lay in his hospital bed and visually reconstructed and healed the vertebrae of his spine in his mind. I took Dr Joe Dispenza’s techniques and adapted them to heal my own body to relieve holding patterns and tension. I have since used these techniques to help other people move on from physical trauma. These techniques are combined with those from the Breathworks Mindfulness Model and are delivered in our unique Mindfulness Courses.

– Alison Salter, The Highland Chronic Pain and Whiplash Centre Founder and Manager


The Body Keeps the Score: Mind, Brain and Body in the Transformation of Trauma

The effects of trauma can be devastating for sufferers, their families and future generations too.

Here one of the world’s experts on traumatic stress offers a bold new paradigm for treatment, moving away from standard talking and drug therapies and towards an alternative approach that heals mind, brain and body.

‘Van der Kolk draws on thirty years of experience to argue powerfully that trauma is one of the West’s most urgent public health issues … Packed with science and human stories’ New Scientist

‘Breathtaking in its scope and breadth, a seminal work by one of the preeminent pioneers in trauma research and treatment’ Peter A. Levine, author of In An Unspoken Voice

The Mindful Path to Self-Compassion: Freeing Yourself from Destructive Thoughts and Emotions

“Buck up.” “Stop feeling sorry for yourself.” “Don’t ruin everything.” When you are anxious, sad, angry, or lonely, do you hear this self-critical voice? What would happen if, instead of fighting difficult emotions, we accepted them? Over his decades of experience as a therapist and mindfulness meditation practitioner, Dr. Christopher Germer has learned a paradoxical lesson: We all want to avoid pain, but letting it in–and responding compassionately to our own imperfections, without judgment or self-blame–are essential steps on the path to healing. This wise and eloquent book illuminates the power of self-compassion and offers creative, scientifically grounded strategies for putting it into action. Free audio downloads of the meditation exercises are available at the author’s website:

Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies (ABCT) Self-Help Book of Merit

Osteopathy for Children

(Synopsis courtesy of Churchdown Osteopaths)

Osteopathy is becoming increasingly well known for the treatment of babies and children. This book explains clearly and simply how physical strains picked up during birth may affect children for many years.

These strains may cause some very common physical symptoms such as excessive crying, feeding difficulties, and sleep problems in babies.

They may also contribute to problems as the child grows such as behavioural problems, low immunity, aches and pains and much more.

The book also explains how osteopathy can be of benefit to mothers during and after pregnancy. A useful book for those wanting to know more about how osteopathy can help babies and children.

Understanding Infant Colic – An Osteopathic Perspective

by Clive Hayden MSc DO MSCC

(Information courtesy of Churchdown Osteopaths)

This 28 page booklet explains the different causes of infant digestive disorders, and how to recognise the difference between the symptoms of reflux, infant gut irritability, lactose intolerance and allergy. It explains different management for each cause including for parents in handling the child, medical management and how osteopathic treatment can help.

The booklet is aimed at parents trying to help their child with colic, but would also be a useful reference book for osteopaths, midwives and health visitors who need to advise parents on the management of infantile colic.

Clive Hayden MSc DO MSCC has been in osteopathic practice in Gloucester, UK since 1977 and has over 30 years experience of treating babies. He graduated from the British School of Osteopathy, in London, in 1977, and completed a Masters degree with the European School of Osteopathy in Kent in 2001. Clive has been involved in teaching osteopathy in the cranial field since 1983, mostly to post-graduate osteopaths. Mostly his teaching commitments are with the Sutherland Cranial College of Osteopathy in the UK. He has lectured abroad in France, Belgium, Germany, the USA, New Zealand and Australia. Clive is co-author of a research paper on Infantile Colic in 2006 ‘A preliminary assessment of the impact of cranial osteopathic treatment for the relief of infantile colic’ published in ‘Complementary therapies in Clinical Practice’ in 2006, and republished in 2009 and can be found here. He is also a co-author of The Textbook of Pediatric Osteopathy by Eva Moeckel and Noori Mitha. Clive and his wife Liz are partners in a busy, varied osteopathic practice, and enjoy the many and varied challenges of treating infants and children, whilst also trying to help adults in need.

Relevant and Recent Osteopathic Research:

For Research in the field of Mindfulness please click here.

Cranial Osteopathy and General Osteopathy :

Cranial Osteopathy:

Cranial Osteopathy:

Osteopathy versus Cranial Osteopathy:

General Osteopathy:

Diabetes and Osteopathy:


Specific Adjustment Technique theses By Angela Haines-Wangda of The Canadian School of Osteopathy – Tom Dummer: His Contribution to Osteopathy Through Body, Mind and SpeechClick Here to View


Cranial Osteopathy Research (with specific focus on colic/reflux/sleep problems/breastfeeding and neonatal care):

Cranial Osteopathy and Infantile Colic:

Cranial Osteopathy and Sleep in Babies:

Osteopathy and Lactation Difficulties:

Osteopathy and Neonatal Care: