When it comes to bizarre therapies, this week's -- the Dawson Program -- is top of the list.
Or rather it was when I first came across it and its Australian originator seven years ago. Armed with an eclectic collection of bells and bowls, horns and pipes, Cameron Dawson was a man you could never forget.
Then in his sixties, the Santa lookalike stunned DJ Gerry Ryan into silence on air -- no mean feat -- by correctly identifying and treating his back and digestive problems and a lazy eye.
Bizarre, it transpires, can also be brilliant and, for me, the Dawson Program, based on ancient traditions originating 5,000 years ago, falls into that category. Whenever something doesn't feel quite right healthwise it is my first port of call, and as a result I haven't needed to attend a doctor since first discovering it.
Developed more than 35 years ago, the technique, which is also known as Vibrational Kinesiology, treats a patient by correcting the malfunctions in their electrical field using sounds, affirmations, intention and semi-precious stones.
It is based on the belief that the human body is a self-creating and self-correcting system, given the opportunity to do so. Pivotal to this is the understanding that all life form vibrates at an optimum frequency of 77.6MHz.
Having trained with the late Cameron, Jill Kenny runs clinics in Kenmare and Kilmoyley in Co Kerry.
"When a client comes for a session it is like bringing their car for a service. Non-invasively, we check every bone, gland and organ in the body and get everything operating correctly again by working with the subconscious mind and sound frequencies.
"It differs from other therapies out there in that there is no manual re-adjustment back into alignment. Instead, when we work with the electrical fields the bodily corrections are carried out by the body itself in response to the sound therapy," explains Jill.
As odd as this sounds, I remember distinctly feeling as if the curvature of my spine (scoliosis) straightened itself in a few minutes the first time I heard these fairly weird natural sounds being played by Cameron close to my body, as I repeated affirmations. This was followed by an intense heat in my back for two days. Who needs drugs when nature can do such a spectacular job instead?
To ensure the readjustment held I would play a correctional sounds CD once a week.
"The source of illness in the human body, according to the Dawson Program, is a combination of frequency malfunction, water and nutrient deficiency which can be further exacerbated by chemical damage or exposure to unusual forms of irritation to the cells."
On meeting Jill in her Kenmare clinic, she uses kinesiology to run through a set protocol of questions for my subconscious mind to answer. For those unfamiliar with kinesiology, it is also known as 'muscle-testing' and is based on the fundamental principle that the body doesn't lie.
Each of these systems, the Dawson Program claims, has individual frequencies that can be affected by shock, causing an imbalance to chemical, physical and emotional functions.
As she encounters imbalances -- such as my sacrum, due no doubt to the pressure of the baby or the two bones that were out of place in my neck -- she plays the sounds of cymbals, horns and Tibetan bowls, while I repeat affirmations relating to the associated emotion.
While she treats people for all sorts of issues, a growing area is that of dyslexia.