About Janine

I’m an Advanced Practitioner and Instructor of Ortho-Bionomy, registered with Ortho-Bionomy Australia.

In 20+ years of clinical practice I’ve helped many people leave pain behind with this gentle bodywork method that activates the body’s natural healing processes. The most valuable part of every session for my clients’ long-term recovery is teaching them the self-care techniques – because if you know how to do this for yourself you are no longer dependent on a practitioner to ‘fix’ you – instead you’re empowered to change your own experience.

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Janine McCarthy - about support

I began studying Ortho-Bionomy in 1996 and later qualified as a Practitioner, then Advanced Practitioner and Instructor. My teachers were some of the first students of Dr. Arthur Lincoln Pauls, founder of Ortho-Bionomy.

Pauls was a Canadian osteopath, Judo master and a student of many ancient healing and philosophical traditions. He developed this gentle bodywork method to avoid using force and instead work in harmony with the body’s own natural healing reflexes and self-healing intelligence. I honour Pauls’ legacy and the mentoring, wisdom and guidance I received from my own teachers, particularly Luann Overmyer, Allison Baensch and Bruce Stark.

I’m a leader in my field and I’m committed to excellence in the practice and teaching of Ortho-Bionomy, serving as chair of the board of directors of Ortho-Bionomy Australia (OBA), the Instructor Review Committee (IRC) of the Society of Ortho-Bionomy International and currently as chair of OBA’s IRC.

I prefer to use the term facilitator instead of ‘healer’ for myself. ‘Healer’ falsely credits the practitioner for their clients’ healing, when in truth all healing comes from within and every human has the right to access their own healing capacity in their own timing.

I aim to have no expectation or judgement about when or how you will access your healing. I offer my knowledge, expertise and experience to guide you to initiate and engage with your body’s self-healing intelligence and support your healing journey. 

I continue to work on unlearning the biases I inherited and learned as a white woman growing up in a colonised country with a history of attempted genocide of its First Nations People and current-day systemic and social racism. My journey towards Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in my business and life continues.

Janine working with a client
Ortho-Bionomy logo

What led me here?

One kind of health care

When I was 12 I was taken to see a big muscular male practitioner of a certain bodywork modality who ‘adjusted’ my body using forceful, high-velocity manipulations. It was a frightening and hugely disempowering experience, especially as I was obliged to wear only my underwear and a surgical gown. I felt unsafe and vulnerable. I knew then that this was wrong for me (and it didn’t resolve my health problems either).

Early experiences of pain

Through my teens and early 20s I had low-back and hip pain most days and suffered severe pain, diarrhoea and emotional symptoms with my menstruation. I was out of action for days each month but I just accepted it as my own version of ‘normal’. My doctor prescribed the contraceptive pill to stop my menstrual pain while I finished school. For lack of any other solutions I ended up staying on the pill for years afterwards which caused a host of problematic side effects. I felt dismissed and let down by conventional medicine which at best gave me only two options – drugs or surgery – and at worst gave me more health problems. Gathering my own excellent health team – a Homoeopath and a Naturopath – resolved many of my symptoms but I still suffered chronic back, hip and menstrual pain, until one day my Naturopath recommended I see an Ortho-Bionomy practitioner. Since I trusted her advice I took that leap of faith even though I’d not heard of this bodywork method before.

A better kind of health care

The experience couldn’t have been more different to those awful treatments when I was 12. For a start I was fully-clothed, and the practitioner’s focus was to help me feel comfortable and safe. I was amazed by how gentle and subtle her touch and techniques were, yet how much I could feel my body adjusting and shifting, with an overall feeling of ease and deep rest. I felt supported, cared-for, listened-to and respected. At the end of the session she showed me some simple self- care techniques I could use at home to relieve pain and help my body find more functional ways to move and be.

With a few more sessions and some self-care work I was experiencing life without daily pain. I felt in charge of my own health and empowered to know what was best for me. That experience inspired me to study Ortho-Bionomy so I could help others learn this gentle, non-forceful way of relieving pain and develop the same sense of agency over their own health.

I know your body is a healing powerhouse

… and it can release pain and restore vitality with very little external input. We’ve been taught to ignore the information our bodies give us about what they need. We’ve become accustomed to relying on experts who – while they may have our best interests at heart – don’t know how it feels inside our skin.

If you’ve always had a feeling that there was a kinder way to treat your body, you’re right. Lasting change IS possible – and you can start today.

Start Here

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Disclaimer:

This work isn’t right for everyone – it’s not intended as a replacement for proper medical care and may only be helpful for people not suffering from a medical condition. While I am a registered Ortho-Bionomy practitioner, I am not a medical practitioner – so I do not diagnose, cure or treat any medical conditions and my services must not be interpreted as medical care. These services are intended to teach you how to relieve tension and discomfort in your own body using specific gentle self-care techniques involving comfortable positioning and gentle movements. Consult your medical practitioner before using this or any other self-care program. 

The Ortho-Bionomy-Bionomy and Sandollar logos are registered trade marks of Ortho-Bionomy Australia Ltd and are used with permission.

Acknowledgement of Country

I acknowledge the Wurundjeri Woi Worrung of the Kulin Nation as the Traditional Owners and Custodians of the land on which I live and work. I acknowledge their sovereignty over this land was never ceded and I pay my respects to their Elders past, present and emerging.