What is Osteopathy?

Osteopathy is a form of manual medicine which views the body as a whole and aims to treat the cause of a problem rather than just the symptoms. Osteopaths assist healing by focusing on how the skeleton, joints, muscles, nerves, circulation, connective tissue and internal organs function together as a single unit.

Conditions are treated through the use of manual therapy, combined with traditional medical knowledge. More specifically, manipulations and techniques which are used to assess, prevent and treat various ailments, including those of the musculoskeletal, visceral, autonomic nervous and

cranial-sacral systems.

We Queenstown and Lake Hayes Estate Osteopaths are registered Health Care Practitioners and ACC providers, there is no need for a doctor’s referral to be visited by us. See our Queenstown and Lake Hayes Estate locations here.

Osteopathy is based on 4 fundamental principles:

  • The body is a unit, and the person represents a combination of body, mind and spirit.

  • The body is capable of self-regulation, self-healing and health maintenance.

  • Structure and function are reciprocally interrelated.

  • Rational treatment is based on an understanding of these principles: body unity, self-regulation, and the interrelationship of structure and function.

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What can an Osteopath treat?

Osteopathy for Infants and Children

Infants & Babies: Reflux, colics, plagiocephaly & torticollis, latching difficulties, irritability, breech babies.

Children & Teenagers: Headaches, neck & back pain, knee pain, ear infections, postural problems, low foot arches.

Osteopathy is a gentle treatment suitable for babies and children. Osteopaths utilise a range of gentle techniques including cranial-sacral therapy. Cranial techniques are safe, gentle and non-manipulative. They are often used when treating young children and newborn infants. Osteopaths work under the principle that there may be a number of contributing factors to the symptoms and will therefore evaluate not only the area which is producing the symptoms, but also associated areas that may be contributing to the issue.

Our Queenstown and Lake Hayes Estate Osteopath Fiona is the only one who currently treats infants and babies under the age of 5.

Bianca and Luke treat children aged 5+ years.


The following is a list of conditions for which

Osteopathy may prove beneficial in alleviation of symptoms but also, in some cases, resolution of the condition. Please contact us if you would like further information regarding a specific ailment. 

Muscular System

  • Neck & Low Back pain, Joint pain

  • Rib and intercostal pains 

  • Sports injuries & Muscle strains

  • Whiplash

  • Hernias & Protrusions

  • Tendinitis

  • Scoliosis, Postural problems, Scars

  • Frozen Shoulder

  • Paediatric: Congenital torticollis


  • Concussions

  • Headaches & Migraines 

  • Dizziness & Vertigo

  • Sciatica

  • Carpal tunnel syndrome

  • Difficulty sleeping / irritability

  • Neurological deficits

  • Stress & Adrenal fatigue

  • Depression / Anxiety

Skeletal system​

  • Arthritic pains

  • Joint alignment

  • Shoulder, elbow, wrist, knee & ankle sprains

  • Post surgery scars & mobilisation

  • Paediatric: Plagiocephaly, Iliac Apophysitis

Digestive system

  • Gastritis, Hiatal hernia

  • Reflux

  • Abdominal swelling

  • Constipation 

  • Crohn's Disease symptoms

  • Acute & Chronic Colics 

  • Paediatric: Colics, swallowing difficulties, constipation


Osteopathy for Sports, Rehabilitation and Athletic Preparation

Osteopathy is beneficial not only to help recover from injuries but also prevent them, in athletes as well as people who simply enjoy sports and exercise to keep fit.

Improving Athletic Performance 

Osteopathy is being used more and more by high profile athletes and sports teams internationally. Because of Osteopathy's holistic approach the athletes body is viewed as a whole allowing the therapist to better understand the cause of an underlying problem and not being limited just to the muscular-skeletal system. 

How can Osteopathy help my Injuries?


  • Reduce painful symptoms through manual techniques.

  • Treat the injury as well as any compensations created by the body. 

  • Refer for X-ray or Ultra-sound.

  • Refer to a specialist doctor if necessary.

  • Provide a rehabilitation programme.

  • Give ongoing treatment to prevent future injury.

  • Improve overall sporting performance.

  • Assist your return to sport as quickly as possible.

If you'd like to book an appointment regarding a sports injury, recovery or preparation our skilled Queenstown and Lake Hayes Estate based osteopaths Luke and Bianca will be able to help you


What techniques does an Osteopath use?

Osteopaths use a wide variety of techniques to create a unique treatment for each individual. 

Soft Tissue Techniques

Consist of a rhythmic stretching, deep pressure and traction. Its purpose is to move tissue fluids and to relax hypertonic muscles and myofascial layers associated with somatic dysfunction. 

HVLA (High-Velocity Low-Aplitude)

Joint manipulation is often referred to by Osteopaths as an High velocity, low amplitude or ‘HVLA’. This is a gentle, safe and effective technique designed to restore the normal movement to a joint (any joint in the body) that is stuck or not moving properly.


Inside the skull or cranium there is a covering over the brain, the dura, that continues down inside the spine to the tailbone or sacrum, protecting and supporting the central nervous system. This central nervous system controls the functioning of every organ, muscle and nerve in the body. Cranial Osteopathy is a systematic approach to patient diagnosis and treatment utilizing the body's inherent, third wave impulse, emanating from the central nervous system and the fluctuation of cerebrospinal fluid. This is called Cranial Rhythmic Impulse (CRI). This gentle, manual technique uses the CRI to treat the whole person, emphasizing the head and spinal regions. 

Visceral Techniques

These techniques are used to evaluate and treat the 

dynamics of motion and suspension in relation to organs, membranes, fascia and ligaments. Visceral Osteopathy increases proprioceptive communication within the body.

Fascial Techniques

During fascial unwinding, the therapist stimulates mechanoreceptors in the fascia by applying gentle touch and stretching. Touch and stretching induce relaxation and activate the parasympathetic nervous system. They also activate the central nervous system, which is involved in the modulation of muscle tone as well as movement. As a result, the central nervous system is aroused and thereby responds by encouraging muscles to find an easier, or more relaxed, position and by introducing the ideomotor action. Although the ideomotor action is generated via normal voluntary motor control systems, it is altered and experienced as an involuntary response.

- Minasny B. Understanding the Process of Fascial Unwinding (2009) Int J Ther Massage Bodywork. 2(3): 10–17.

Muscle Energy Techniques

What it involves is a powerful yet gentle series of techniques that can be utilized on any muscle of the body to restore normal range of motion and mechanical function.What a Muscle Energy technique does is normalize the stretch reflex to its proper place.  It normalizes the output of the motor neuron so that the muscle can instinctively relax to a normal state.  No amount of massage or heat or stretching can do this. Muscle Energy techniques are what we call “integrative” techniques.  This means that after we spend most of the treatment correcting misaligned joints, compacted vertebra, and sheered viscera, Muscle Energy techniques are used to integrate these changes in the body and help them stay.