Welcome to Stretch Therapy
Kit Laughlin is the Founder of Stretch Therapy, and a world authority in stretching and strengthening techniques.
Kit is the author of the best-selling books Overcome Neck & Back Pain, Stretching & Flexibility, and Stretching & Pregnancy and has presented workshops to many thousands of individuals worldwide.
Kit studied Oriental medicine and Shiatsu for three years in Japan and founded the Shoshin Centre (in Canberra – and presently Greenwell Point – Australia), where he assists clients to overcome pain related to muscular and skeletal asymmetries.
Kit is a 30+ year meditator and has taught meditation workshops in Buddhist monasteries in Asia.
Olivia Allnutt is an ST Workshop Presenter, Senior Stretch Teacher, Stretch Practitioner, Monkey Gym Teacher, and – along with ST Founder Kit Laughlin – co-director of Stretch Therapy™.
Olivia has been a student of the Stretch Therapy system since 1993. She's taught all levels of Stretch Therapy, Monkey Gym and RollStretch for over 20 years, and presented ST workshops in Australia and internationally for the past 10 years.
Olivia's background experience includes training as a gymnast from age six – as well as coaching gymnastics for many years – and competing in cross country running, field hockey, softball, and swimming.
Olivia is a qualified gymnastics coach, swimming instructor, and personal trainer.
What is the Stretch Therapy™ Method ?
For over 35 years Kit Laughlin and Olivia Allnutt have been researching, investigating, teaching and perfecting the world's most complete stretching and relaxation methodologies.
The Stretch Therapy Method contains easy-to-learn stretching exercises that work for normal adult bodies – regardless of prior experience and physical condition.
The exercises are complemented by deeply effective relaxation techniques.
Stretch Therapy (or ‘ST’ for short) is the safest, most efficient bodywork method available if you want to experience grace and ease in daily life, whether you are an office worker, or an athlete.
Stretch Therapy is used by pregnant women, teenagers, sportspeople, coaches, employers, and people of all ages, all around the world.
Kit Laughlin has been a meditator for 30 years. The Deep Well Being (DWB) stream brings methods out of Buddhist monasteries into ordinary daily life, for anyone to use.
Cultivation of serenity in the body as a direct physical experience is what most of us need, and DWB starts there.
At the Australian National University, more than 20 teachers and advanced students met every Tuesday evening, in the classes that had been running there for 27 years.
The key principle of ST is that the body‒mind complex is more than the sum of its parts (so, wholistic, or systems theoretical perspectives are favoured over mechanistic, or reductive ones ‒ unless there is a reason to favour the latter over the former!).
Three additional principles are discussed below.
In RollStretch (RS) the emphasis is fascia. RS uses sticks, balls of various diameters, and rollers (we recommend the TravelRoller) to increase the effect of any stretch position.
‘Fascial remodelling’ is a reality; this term describes what happens when this tissue is stressed in particular ways and it is permanently altered as a result.
- How does ST compare with Yoga, Pilates, ...?
- How often should I stretch?
- Am I too old to stretch?
- Can I stretch while I’m pregnant?
We use the term ‘technique’ interchangeably with ‘method’ or ‘approach’; and as used here, is synonymous with ‘tool’, or a device designed to produce a specific effect.
Techniques include Contract–Relax, Pulsing, Long-Holds, Micro-movements, Directed Breathing, Controlled Cramping, and Deep Relaxation.
Monkey Gym (MG) is the strength and agility wing of the ST system.
The foundation of any effective strengthening work is sound biomechanics, and we start there. Adding strength on top of unsound foundations simply will not work, long term.
Our work and travels have brought us in contact with many remarkable people. Here is a little background to some of our colleagues and partners. As an explicitly open learning system, we urge you to connect with these people.