So what exactly is Rolfing Structural Integration?
It was Dr. Rolf’s theory that pain in the human organism, both physical and emotional, was based on our relationship with gravity and its effect on our fascial membranes. Force vectors that enter the body either physical, emotional or environment can effect the physical structure, the alignment of the skeletal structure and all the muscles, ligaments and tendons of the organism. Just like a geodesic dome, our structure is totally interrelated and any force that enters the system can be held in other parts of the structure. Through skillful application of technique, a Rolfer can inform the system of its imbalance and ultimately change the structure to a place of more ease, freeing up energy that is used unnecessarily to hold patterns of imbalance.
How is Structural Integration Different from Swedish Massage?
Linking all internal structures within the human frame is the fascial web. This plastic-like connective tissue creates the structure that you see. Fascia also envelopes and unites the structure of all the inner organs. Since fascia is malleable it is constantly changing and adapting to external responses. Sometimes these forces create adaptions that manifest as imbalances and pain. Rolfing, although classified as a form of massage therapy, doesn’t resemble classic Swedish massage. The strokes are much slower, often times not even moving, while the Rolfer waits for the fascia to release and lengthen. Fascia is an organ of form and through deliberate and focused application with passive and active movement of the client’s body during the application, painful conditions often disappear as the body takes on a more upright and fluid postural attitude. Through movement education and exercises, our clients engage in their own healing, often creating changes that last a lifetime! The beauty of Rolfing(Structural Integration) is that it offers a tactile and chemical free approach to pain management. I highly suggest you add Rolfing to your wellness regimen. It is an outstanding manual therapy that has been used successfully for nearly 70 years for a wide variety of physical challenges.
Oftentimes Rolfer’s reputations have proceeded them when someone mentions the techniques. Inevitably, it has to do with the concept of pain. Unfortunately, many will never experience the great value of this work because of its misunderstood concept of what pain entails. Have you ever exerted yourself on a run, swim or bike training session where you are hovering on the edge? Rolfing can approach that edge, but seldom goes beyond. And if it does, its extremely brief. Oftentimes, it just because the edge of comfort has been pushed, that physical and emotional results are achieved. The genre of massage is huge, and pain management takes on many forms. For those who haven’t experience the liberating work of structural integration, you have missed out on one of the most beneficial hands on techniques available in the industry.