Our brain has the capability to filter out or ignore sensory input.  For example, when we get dressed we are initially aware of the ‘feel’ of our clothes but then our brain will ‘filter’ out those sensations for the rest of the day or keep them ‘in the background’ and ignore them.  In the same way our brain will often put ‘in the background’ both physical problems and emotional issues, and in a sense, filter them out and thus effectively ignore them.  (It also ignores or filters out information that is incongruous with information it has already stored.)

We all have observed people unconsciously tapping their head with their finger tips.  Tapping stimulates the brain’s awareness.  It is a way to unstick brain signals.  The brain needs to be engaged in the healing process but sometimes it filters out signals that are indicating imbalance somewhere in the tissue and thus a healing neurological response is not sent to the tissue.

Without some of this input, however, the brain’s natural healing/corrective response is also absent.  We can call this a state of ‘stuckness’ and we need to get the brain unstuck so it not only recognizes the sensory input that brings to it the messages of the imbalance, but also responds as it should with its preprogrammed healing program.

Applied Kinesiologists have found a way to turn off this filtering mechanism temporarily using a technique called ‘tapping’.  Tapping involves using the finger tips to give short firm taps to get the brain to pay attention to a certain effort or stimulus.  Thus, tapping enhances the overall integral functioning and intercommunication of the body.

The kinds of stimuli depend on whose protocols you are studying.  Some tapping protocols/therapies specify one or two areas on the body that need to be tapped; others, 7-8 specific points in a specific sequence.   This is therapeutic and with thought (and clinical experience) has been formalized into protocols like EFT, MFT or Body Talk and others. I have studied a number of these protocols and have distilled in this doc what I feel are the most effective applications of the tapping techniques.  I have found that the skull is the most productive responder to tapping and any place on the skull will do as the slight percussion in one area does transmit easily to others.


Where to ‘tap’

Any place on the skull is the best location for neurological applications and, in fact, all healing applications.  Some protocols use body tapping, for example on the acupuncture points, but I find the brain much more responsive to tapping and the body tissue marginally so.


How to ‘tap’

Tapping is done with the all the fingertips, in a light quick staccato motion, on the surface of the skull.  The motion is not a ‘thud’ but rather a quick snappy tap.  The shorter the finger contact on the scalp/forehead, the higher the frequency content of the signal entering the brain.  So the tap itself should be quick but firm.

The rate at which the taps are made is not as critical.  A rhythmic, relaxing waltz pattern can be used (ONE-two-three, ONE-two-three, ONE-two-three, ONE-two-three).  And generally about 30 taps is sufficient to accomplish a stimulating effect, which can be completed in less than 15 seconds.


When to ‘tap’

I have found two applications where tapping makes a nice difference.  Since tapping stimulates brain output and since the brain controls many conscious and unconscious actions, tapping may be helpful with any impaired function.  I may have indicated at our appointment a tapping protocol.

1. Motor control/function.    This tapping should be added to any difficult movement or exercise.  These applications include any loss of motor control due to vaccination, surgery, stroke, immobilization, accident, debility, etc.  Regaining full function seems to occur more quickly when tapping while attempting challenging movement. That is, while the person attempts the movement, another person is doing the tapping.

2. Organ function or inner functional disturbance.  In some therapies the attention is focused on some area inside of the body while the tapping is done.  Generally the area would be one of lowered function as opposed to an area of hyperactivity.  Certain kinds of pain (not enoughness) will respond well to this kind of ‘attentional’ tapping.

3.  Help in addressing stuck beliefs.  Although this is temporary, it is often needed.  The Emotional Freedom Technique employs tapping with affirmations and more info can be obtained at that link and other internet sources.

©Pat Block ND 2009


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