What is Rolfing?
Rolfing is an original and scientifically validated system of body restructuring and movement education. It releases the body’s segments (legs, torso, arms) from life-long patterns of tension and bracing, then permits gravity to re-align them with a resultant feeling of fitness and wholeness.
Rolfing is a form of deep tissue bodywork, not to be confused with massage. While massage therapy will work all soft tissues, Rolfing focuses on a layer called fascia, which is the sheathing membrane that covers muscles, tendons, and organs. Fascia, like a girdle, gives shapes and length to soft tissue.
Dr. Ida Rolf discovered over 50 years ago that it was possible to reshape fascia with manipulation and it would stay in the newly formed shape. Painful issues, like scoliosis and sciatica, can be treated without surgery using this reshaping on a whole body basis.
Rolfing helps to address issues of the whole body—how it is ordered and balanced, how it moves, and how one issue can lead to problems elsewhere. Rolfers are specialists at assessing and treating body alignment issues by reshaping fascia and educating clients.
A Rolfer will free the short and tight fascia, allowing the muscles’ return to a balanced relationship and the body to release the compensations. While Rolfing is primarily concerned with structural changes, any change in the physical body affects the whole person, including the release of old wounds and minimization of chronic pain. Clients then experience restored mobility, energy, and a renewed sense of well-being. This work can be transformational!
Why would I be interested in Rolfing?
Rolfing can vastly improve posture, alignment, flexibility, and performance. It can eliminate chronic pain and relieve unnecessary aches, pains, and stiffness. Rolfing aides rehabilitation from an injury—new or old, and often releases deep-seated emotional trauma rooted within the body. Individual treatment tailoring and education gives the client a new awareness of their body needs and strengthens the body/mind connection.
Does Rolfing Hurt?
During treatment there may be momentary discomfort described by most people as “a good hurt.”
There is no sense of being injured or unsafe. There is absolutely no abrupt manipulation. Rather, deep, gentle pressure is used with a resultant sense of release/relief. Careful consideration is given to the individual’s pain tolerance and condition.
How is Rolfing Different?
Commonly, the goal of Massage Therapy is to relieve tension and create relaxation while the goal of Rolfing is to create permanent change and relieve chronic pain. Rolfing releases holding patterns in the entire body and treats the body as an integrated system. Rolfing is a wholistic approach to health care.
The body’s individual structural needs dictate where and how the Advanced Rolfing work begins. The intention is to start at the center(s) of the body’s restrictions and holding patterns and then work out from there. After mobilizing each client’s most primary restriction(s) they are then contextualized within their whole body. The approach is customized to the individual’s body instead of being formula or recipe based. Advanced Rolfing also addresses what is often asymmetrical in the clients body. Often similar results to the Basic approach are achieved in less time and sessions using this methodology.