The Rolf Method of Structural Integration is a ten-session series of connective tissue mobilization, myofascial release, movement and postural re-education. The goal of Structural Integration is to restore myofascial balance and relieve chronic structural stress. Each session builds upon the last one to prepare the body for the next, by scheduling appointments one week apart, time in between allows the body to integrate the new changes that were experienced. Structural Integration is a continuous process of opening, shifting, unfolding and organizing into an increased sense of wholeness.
Vogue Magazine editors, Dr. Oz and Oprah have all contributed to the topic of Structural Integration and recommended this technique. “Twisted and contorted from hunching over a keyboard and lugging a massive tote, Heidi Julavits looks to a modern take on a sixties-era technique to perfect her posture”, Vogue March 2007 Pg. 472.
What causes the need for Structural Integration?
Fascial tissue thickens and hardens in response to stress, injury, misuse and postural malalignment. The loss of resiliency results in a poorly aligned body that moves with stiffness, loss of energy, discomfort and pain. In a malaligned body gravity is a downward force. Connective tissue responds to the increased force and strain by thickening to lend support to the body. Over time the imbalance in the connective tissue impairs joint mobility and muscle potential and may result in pain.
Am I a candidate for the Rolf Method of Structural Integration?
Patients with orthopedic and neurologic problems, chronic pain, myofascial syndromes and a host of more specific problems usually benefit from the ten session series.
How does Rolfing work?
In Structural Integration the connective tissue is opened and lengthened through the controlled pressure and direction of the therapist’s hands. The ten sessions are designed by specific themes that emphasize anatomical goals and systematic release of connective tissue. The manual techniques are reinforced and enhanced by movement and postural re-education. Lengthening and softening of the connective tissue allows the body to realign within the gravitational field and leads to improved mobility and freedom of function.
The Rolf Method of Structural Integration is a total body approach based on realization that the body structures are connected as a whole. Pain and restriction in one part of the body lead to compensations throughout the structure. The approach is particularly beneficial for those conditions where heightened sensitivity and pain preclude direct manipulation.
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