Dr. Castillo Morales

Fotos © A. Enders

Dr. Rodolfo Castillo Morales
(1941- 2011)

“La medicina es arte. La rehabilitación neurológica es el arte
de descubrir através del contacto y la observación que persona esta detrás de la etiqueta.”

Rodolfo Castillo Morales

Everybody who had anything to do with Rodolof Castillo Morales, professionally or personally, was impressed by his ability to be both highly concentrated and to devote his total attention to a patient and to trust completely whoever he was dealing with – and also by his outstanding powers of observation, which he developed at a very early age.

Growing up in the countryside in the province of Entre Rios he lived from an early age in constant contact with the agricultural workers, predominantly native Argentinians (Aboriginies). Their special way of behaving to each other, their mutual respect and their respect towards nature had a lasting effect on him, leading him to concern himself throughout his life extensively with Latin American anthropology.

In his youth he was active as a mime in the theatre and also as an artist, reflecting his general interest in the various methods of communication with other people. Modelling with clay was one of his hobbies and later on he developed this as a method of occupational therapy.

Foto © C. Türk

Alongside his medical studies in Córdoba /Argentina he underwent training in therapeutic support for rehabilitation and at an early age gained practical experience  in rehabilitation centres.

Making use of a WHO scholarship he trained as a specialist in Madrid, and became one of the first specialists for rehabilitation. The research of Dr. André-Thomas, a French neurological pediatrician and his students Dr. Claudine Amiel-Tison and Dr. Albert Grenier, and also the work of Wygotski and Luria were of particular interest to him.

Castillo Morales was always open to new ideas and involved himself closely with the therapeutic work of Vaclav Voita, Carlo Perfetti, Glenn Doman, Carl Delacato, Herman Kabat, Marianne Frostig, Margaret Rood, Jean Ayres Roswitha Brunkow and Carlos Douglas. In particular, the ideas and findings of the Bobaths, a married couple, with whom Castillo Morales had many intensive discussions, influenced both his therapeutic work and the development of the Castillo Morales® concept.

After completing his training as a specialist, Castillo Morales returned to Córdoba, where together with colleagues he started up a small rehabilitation centre. A visit by Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. mult.Theodor Hellbrügge led to an invitation to the Easter Congress 1977, where Castillo Morales was able for the first time in Europe to present his therapeutic ideas and methods based on the motoric areas of the body and face for children with hypotonia. With the aim of extending as early as possible the sphere of movement and perception of these children he used the motor areas of the body described by André-Thomas for therapeutic support in the process of holding up the body and head using the orofacial function. The DAA [German Academic Exchange Service] made it possible for him to spend a year at the Centre for Children in Munich in research connected with his neurological rehabilitation concept.

With the support of the Sonnenschein München [Sunshine Munich] Campaign the rehabilitation centre in Córdoba, headed by Doctor Castillo Morales until 2006, could be continually enlarged.

There has been a continual further development of the concept, first of all with the considerable support of Dr. Juan Brondo, Dr. Barbara Renner and Barbara Haberstock, and later supported by the therapists holding the courses, who they trained, so that the range of conditions and symptoms for which the therapeutic methods of the Castillo Morales® concept can be applied, has been continually extended.

Foto © C. Türk

In Germany, first of all instruction was given in various courses in the two parts of the concept, neurological motoric development therapy and orofacial regulation therapy. At the expressed wish of the concept’s originator and since the Castillo Morales ® Vereinigung e.V. [Registered Association] was founded in 1997, instruction is given in the total concept in a six-week basic course.

As far as his health permitted, Castillo Morales took part in the courses in Germany so that many of the therapists were able to experience for themselves his particularly impressive way of dealing with the patients, never failing to show them respect. His death has left a large gap in the circle of therapists conversant with his methods and his friends throughout the world.