Fascia Expertise & Scientific Research

Scientific Relevance of Rolfing® Structural Integration

Rolfing® Structural Integration is as current as ever. The holistic bodywork method is receiving increasing awareness due to its uniqueness in combining fascial bodywork with movement practices. A new solid understanding of fascia, which has only recently been recognized as our richest sense organ for proprioception and which has been found to store pain, supports the importance of this bodywork method.

Along with its growing popularity, the Rolfing method has been gaining scientific relevance in recent years: new findings in fascia research, the 2021 Nobel Prize for the discovery of receptors for temperature and touch, as well as current scientific studies on the effectiveness of Rolfing sessions all contribute to a growing recognition of Rolfing Structural Integration.




Scientific Engagement of European Rolfing® Association

The European Rolfing® Association actively engages in research on Rolfing Structural Integration. We are currently participating in an extensive study on the effects of the Rolfing 10-Series on measures of body posture and tissue stiffness.

Our Research Director, renowned fascia scientist Dr. Robert Schleip, is developing new, reliable methods for clinical connective tissue research. The human biologist and Rolfer® also functions as vice president of the Fascia Research Society.

The concept of the plasticity of the human body and the key role of fascia remain highly topical and will continue to spread as more and more people seek Rolfing Structural Integration as clients, and as an exciting career in an expanding field of inquiry.


The European Rolfing® Association actively supports or encourages the research of the following organisations:

Scientific Advisory Board

The European Rolfing® Association is proud to list the following esteemed scientists as members of its Scientific Advisory Board:

  • Giulio Gabbiani PhD (University of Geneva)
  • Peter Huijing PhD (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam)
  • Dominik Irnich PhD (Universitätsklinikum München)
  • Helene Langevin MD (National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, National Institutes of Health)
  • Stephen Porges PhD (Universität of North Carolina)
  • Moshe Solomonow PhD (University of Colorado)
  • Andry Vleeming PhD (Ghent University)


Did you know?

Fascia Research has been much in vogue over the last decade. Few people, however, know how closely this revolutionary young scientific discipline is related to Rolfing® Structural Integration.

Dr. Ida Rolf, who invented the Rolfing method, was a biochemist and did research on connective tissue (what is now subsumed as fascia) already back in the 1930s. And it was her legacy, the Dr. Ida P. Rolf Research Foundation (IPRRF), who initiated the first Fascia Research Congress in 2005 and is the origin of the today independent Fascia Research Society.

Not the least, Dr. Robert Schleip, one of the most prominent faces of Fascia Research, is himself a Rolfer and additionally the Research Director of the European Rolfing® Association.

Read article on Dr. Ida Rolf’s Legacy 
More Information on Dr. Ida Rolf 

Cooperation with BODY WORLDS Museum Berlin

The European Rolfing® Association is now a cooperation partner of the BODY WORLDS museum in Berlin to raise awareness on the significance of current scientific findings in fascia research.

In view of the great public interest in fascia research, the museum has created a new area of plastinates specifically dedicated to fascia. In particular, the world's first full-body fascia plastinate, FR:EIA, provides scientists, Rolfers®, and other interested parties with exciting insights into the anatomy of fascia.

Dr. Robert Schleip, Research Director of the European Rolfing® Association, has designed a special crash-course on fascia at the BODY WORLDS Museum Berlin, featuring a guided tour and a matching teaching sheet.





Would you like to engage in or support our scientific research?

The European Rolfing® Association supports high quality scientific research which validates and expands knowledge of Dr. Rolf’s foundational work.

  • You can support our work by engaging as a volunteer test person for a new Rolfing study which will take place at the premises of the European Rolfing® Association in Munich in December 2023 - January 2024. If you are interested, please get in touch with us at contact@rolfing.org
  • We greatly appreciate your financial contributions to our research activities. We are grateful for any donations that can be submitted via our Donations form. Please select the purpose “Scientific Research” in the form.
  • The European Rolfing® Association also encourages you to submit your research proposals for basic or applied research, which will be reviewed and discussed. Contact: info@rolfing.org



Current scientific articles on Rolfing Structural Integration and Fascia Research can be found in the Structural Integration Library of the Rolf Research Foundation.

Cover photo (c) fascialnet.com