If you are a person who stutters
(stammers), do words sometimes feel like "brick walls," even before
you try to say them? Do you repeat, prolong,
or force on initial consonants?
sometimes choke on words that start with vowels?
Do your blocks get stronger the harder you try to break
This website will propose new explanations and solutions
to these common stuttering behaviors, based on the authorís recent clinical
research on Valsalva Stuttering Therapy. It will show
that the problem is not in saying the consonant, but rather the
neurological substitution of effort in place of phonation
of the wordís vowel sound. This reaction may be triggered by the
anticipation of difficulty or the urge to use effort to reduce anxiety.
(or stammering), in its most common form, may involve the stutterer's instinctive activation of
the body's Valsalva mechanism in an attempt to force out words when he or
she anticipates difficulty or feels the need to use extra effort to speak
properly. This possibility has been generally ignored by speech therapists and
is rarely addressed by current stuttering therapy. Because persons who
taught to control their Valsalva mechanism, many continue to have
difficulty controlling their stuttering blocks and often relapse after therapy, without understanding
why they are unable to stop stuttering.
The purpose of the Valsalva-Stuttering Network is to promote research and education about stuttering
and the Valsalva mechanism and to develop effective stuttering therapies and
techniques to reduce the Valsalva mechanism's interference
The Valsalva-Stuttering Network welcomes everyone who has an interest in stuttering and/or the Valsalva mechanism, including persons who stutter, speech-language pathologists (SLPs) and other professionals, and
In addition to its possible involvement in stuttering, the Valsalva mechanism is
also associated with blocking or "stuttering" in the playing of brass musical
instruments, such as the trombone. Therefore, the participation of
brass musicians is also welcome.
This website currently
includes the following (with more to come):
An overview and basic explanation of stuttering, Valsalva-stuttering,
the Valsalva mechanism, the Valsalva maneuver, the Valsalva
Hypothesis regarding stuttering, the current shortcomings of stuttering therapy, and
a new approach called Valsalva Control.
Information - Information about controlling the physiological
mechanism that may cause stuttering blocks. Intended for persons wishing to
explore the Valsalva Control approach to improving their
Blocks Explained (VIDEO).
Articles - Links
to more detailed articles on this website regarding stuttering, stuttering
therapy, why various methods have been unsuccessful in stopping
stuttering, the Valsalva
Hypothesis, and Valsalva Control to improve fluency.
Valsalva Stuttering Therapy Program 2013 - Valsalva Stuttering
now available worldwide through video conferencing over the Internet.
Introduction to the Worldwide
Valsalva Stuttering Therapy Program (VIDEOS) -
NEW! Three videos
discussing the neurological, physiological, and psychological factors in
stuttering blocks, and the fundamental principles of Valsalva Stuttering
Update - Updated information about Valsalva Control exercises
for readers of Understanding & Controlling Stuttering.
Results of the first clinical study
of Valsalva Control Therapy - plus video showing dramatic initial
results of Phase 2 intensive therapy study - presented at the
Association annual conference in Ft. Worth, Texas, July 7, 2011.
(NOTE: No additional volunteers are needed for the study, because there
is already sufficient evidence as to the effectiveness of Valsalva
Links - Links to
external websites regarding stuttering, stuttering therapy, the Valsalva maneuver,
stuttering support organizations, and other information resources.
|The new Revised and Expanded Third Edition
Understanding & Controlling Stuttering (2013),
containing new insights and self-help exercises based on Valsalva
Stuttering Therapy, is available for purchase from the National
"New Insights and Tools for Understanding and
Reducing Stuttering Blocks," at the International Stuttering
Association's 10th World Congress for People Who Stutter,
June 12, 2013, in Lunteren, Netherlands.
"Stuttering Unblocked: Freeing Your Speech from the Neurological
'Brick Wall'" - at the National Stuttering Association Annual
Conference, July 3-7, 2013, Scottsdale, Arizona.
© 2011-2013 by William D. Parry
About the Webmaster . . .
D. Parry, J.D., M.A., CCC-SLP
A licensed speech-language pathologist
and trial lawyer. Author of
Understanding & Controlling Stuttering: A Comprehensive New Approach Based on
the Valsalva Hypothesis.
William Parry is a licensed speech-language pathologist and trial lawyer. He
received his law degree from the University of Pennsylvania Law School, where he
was an Editor of the
his Master's Degree in
Speech, Language and Hearing Science from Temple University. He is now
certified by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and licensed in
Pennsylvania, California, Florida, Massachusetts, Virginia, and Texas. He practices Speech-Language Pathology in the
Philadelphia area and provides stuttering therapy in person or by video
conferencing where permitted by law.
most of his life with a severe stuttering problem, Parry became frustrated
with existing theories and therapies (which did not help him to stop
stuttering), and began his own research and
experimentation. This resulted in his "Valsalva Hypothesis" (published in
the Journal of Fluency Disorders in December 1985) and a therapeutic
approach called "Valsalva Control," which dramatically improved his fluency.
This enabled him to become a successful trial lawyer in Philadelphia. He
has been listed in the Bar Register
of Preeminent Lawyers, Who's Who in America and Who's
Who in American Law.
Parry founded the Philadelphia Area Chapter
of the National Stuttering Association in 1985 and has led its support group
meetings for more than 15 years. He served for
six years on the Board of Directors of the National Stuttering Association
and as Chair of its Advocacy Committee. He has appeared on TV and radio talk shows and, in
1987, received the "Spirit of Philadelphia Award" from WCAU-TV Channel 10
News. He has given workshops and presentations on the Valsalva Hypothesis
locally, at NSA conventions, at the Third International Convention for People
Who Stutter in 1992, and at the
World Congress of People
Who Stutter, in 1995 in Sweden, at the
Association's 9th World Congress for People Who Stutter, in 2011, in Buenos
at the British Stammering Association's National Conference
and elsewhere. A preliminary edition
of his book, Understanding and Controlling Stuttering, first appeared
in 1992. The Completed Edition was published in 1994 and the Second Edition was published in 2000,
which went through five updated printings. It has been the NSA's best-selling
book and one of the most popular books about stuttering on Amazon.com. His
book has been published in Korean by the South Korean Speech and Hearing
Association, and is also being published in Russian. A
Revised and Expanded Third
Edition arrived in 2013.
provides in-person stuttering
therapy in the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area and over the Internet by webcam,
where permitted by law.
For further therapy information,
Stuttering Therapy and Counseling (www.stutteringtherapist.com),
or e-mail him at
to arrange a free
D. Parry, Esquire, CCC-SLP
A licensed speech-language pathologist and
trial lawyer, offering Valsalva
Stuttering Therapy in person in Philadelphia and over the Internet via
webcam (subject to applicable law).
Office: 1608 Walnut Street, Suite 900, Philadelphia, PA 19103
Stuttering Therapy and Counseling:
The Valsalva-Stuttering Network:
Valsalva Stuttering Therapy is
new approach to improving fluency by controlling the physiological
mechanism that may be causing stuttering blocks. For further information on Valsalva
Stuttering Therapy and Counseling
Revised and Expanded Third Edition of
Understanding and Controlling Stuttering
(2013) may be ordered from the
National Stuttering Association.
For information concerning stuttering self-help and support, please contact:
National Stuttering Association
119 West 40th Street, 14th Floor, New York, NY 10018
Telephone: (800) 364-1677 or (800) WE STUTTER
Fax: (212) 944-8244
Stutteringtherapist.com Home Page
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Last revised: 5/10/2013