Benefits of Rolfing® Structural Integration

Do you want to be more flexible? Breathe with more ease? Have less back pain? Then Rolfing® SI might be right for you. This holistic body work is based on the discoveries of American biochemist, Dr. Ida Rolf.  Below are 7 reasons why Rolfing® can benefit you.

1. Rolfing® promotes mobility

Rolfing can resolve unhealthy patterns in the body’s fascial network. After Rolfing, fascia and muscle layers glide more freely on each other and joint mobility is enhanced.  As a result, mobility and flexibility are promoted throughout the body. Range of motion increases, and movement becomes smoother and more graceful. (see Rolfing® SI and Fascia)

2. Rolfing® can enhance breathing

One of Rolfing’s objectives is to free breathing. Complete and deep inhalation should be as effortless as possible, exhalation should be relaxed and allow a person to let go.  In order to breath freely, Rolfing focuses on enhancing thoracic mobility and allowing each breath to spread throughout the entire body. Myofascial tissues on the front of the rib cage and shoulder girdle are often short. As a result, the ribs cannot move freely with each inhalation – something that occurs 15,000 to 20,000 times every day. Over time, the shortness in these frontal structures often increases not only limiting breathing, but creating restrictions in organ mobility as well. In many cases, even a single Rolfing session can often bring considerable relief.

3. Rolfing® improves posture

Rolfing is a process that systematically reorganizes the body by adjusting imbalances in the myofascial tissue so that the body can reorganize itself with less effort. Our bodies get the opportunity to make use of gravity — being supported by it, rather than feeling pulled down. Observing the body from one side during the Rolfing 10-Series, the ears, shoulders, pelvis, knees, and ankles will increasingly align themselves along this vertical line. The body’s structure becomes balanced.

4. Rolfing® leads to greater balance and stability

As the body develops effortless upright posture and enhanced mobility, most clients experience a feeling of being lighter overall – while walking and standing. At the same time, they find stronger support from the ground. Their feet make better contact and they perceive their feet and legs to provide a more secure base.  As a result, they stand more stably,

5. Rolfing® can alleviate pain

Strain and discomfort in the body resulting from tensional imbalances and movement impairments can be relieved through Rolfing®. This is how back pain, painful tension in the neck and shoulders, headaches, as well as hip, knee, and foot discomfort can be alleviated and resolved; and, these improvements are mostly long-lasting.

6. Rolfing® improves proprioception (body perception)

Clients re-learn how to feel and experience their own bodies through Rolfing®. For example, they become aware of questions that they might never have asked themselves before:

  • How do I breathe?
  • How do I stand?
  • How do I sit?
  • How do I walk?
  • When do I pull up my shoulders?
  • How does my body react when I’m stressed?

Proprioceptive learning is promoted through the Rolfer’s manual work, verbal instructions and guided movements. However, clients participate actively throughout. Their newly gained body perception helps them be aware of, quickly identify and eliminate old movement habits. And, if they reappear, it is easier for clients to become aware and correct unfavorable posture or detrimental movements patterns. Thus, enhanced proprioception leads to increased body awareness, which is one key to Rolfing’s long-term beneficial effects.

7. Rolfing® has a positive effect on the mind

Body and mind cannot be separate. This becomes clear over and over during Rolfing sessions. Freer breathing and more opening of the rib cage also implies more openness toward our environment and other people. An increased feeling of stability and support through the ground provides enhanced sense of security and centeredness. Rolfing® clients report more energy overall, more balance in difficult situations, more self-assurance, and an ability to display their inner selves more confidently.

Bottom line

Rolfing® is a holistic body work process that affects body and mind positively. After only a few sessions you will notice that you are more flexible, you can breathe more freely, and that you have less strain. Every client’s experience is uniquely personal during Rolfing® Structural Integration sessions.