human body is a dynamic form consisting of fluids, membranes, fascial planes and
osseous (boney) structures. Each persons body is a plastic medium adapting
to its physical environment, nutritional input, emotional content and social interaction.
Disease, repetitive movements, psychological stress, and even the way a child
mimics his or her parents all leave a mark in the developing structure as the
body seeks to integrate these various levels of input.
basically shape ourselves every day by how we move, what we eat, where we live
and how we think. Thus, when someone sprains his or her ankle, swelling occurs
to immobilize the injury. Following healing, adhesions in the area may remain,
leaving the joint less flexible, less efficient. The entire body can begin to
adapt to favoring the ankle causing tightness in the knee, torsion in the pelvis
with one shoulder being held higher than the other.
years of embodying this pattern, the fascia can thicken or shorten to hold the
tension in the system. Eventually even standing requires effort as the restricted
areas leave their marks on the persons capacity to be balanced. Psychological
trauma such as poor self-esteem, feelings of anger or fear and physical or verbal
abuse affect structures. People often hold their breath to block emotions, slouch
in order not to take up too much space, collapse in on themselves in an effort
to endure pain. All of these patterns are held in the physical form, particularly
in the fascia.
What is Rolfing® and how can it help me?
Rolfing is a holistic
system of soft tissue manipulation and movement education that organizes the whole
body in gravity. This "realignment" of posture helps the body feel and
work better. Rolfing affects the body's structure and alignment by manipulating
the myofascial system (connective tissue, or fascia). The movement aspects of
Rolfing help to repattern how the nervous system controls our movement, coordination
and posture. Research has demonstrated that Rolfing creates more efficient muscle
use, allows the body to conserve energy, and creates more economical and refined
patterns of movement. Rolfing has also been shown to significantly reduce chronic
stress, relieve pain (both chronic & acute), and enhance neurological functioning.
goal of Rolfing is to balance your body's structure in gravity. To do that, a
Rolfer looks at how your body has compensated over time, both in how you move
(walking) and while you are stationary (standing, sitting, etc.) Rolfing is generally
performed over a series of ten sessions. This approach allows the Rolfer to affect
the client's structure in a methodical manner. This includes loosening superficial
fascia before working deeper areas, improving support in feet and legs before
affecting higher structures, and helping clients find ways to benefit from freer
movement in their daily activities. See the Frequently Asked Questions for more
in-depth description of the Rolfing Ten-Series.
is Rolfing different than massage?
is an integrative technique utilizing a system of creating order in the bodys
structure. When a Rolfer contacts tissue in a clients slumped shoulders,
she is also feeling through the fascia and making contact with the connective
tissue of the pelvis or arches of the feet so that not only does the shoulder
release, but it has support underneath it from the pelvis or the feet. Rolfing
does not simply release restrictions in the bodys tensional patterns, it
simultaneously creates order in the structural connective tissue.
does last. Because the connective tissue system is realigned holistically in relation
to gravity, the bodys segments relate to each other in the more cohesive
whole. This means that the head can be supported by the neck, which can be supported
by the shoulders and ribcage, which can be balanced by the pelvis and the arches
of the feet. This intelligent re-patterning allows the neurological input to be
more appropriate so that the client has an opportunity to experience increasingly