How does Rolfing work?
Fascia/connective tissue is THE key
to profound results in bodywork
Fascia, also known as connective tissue, is the fibrous tissues throughout our body that holds us together. These tissues run through the organs as well as completely enveloping the muscles and are very tough and resistant to change- they play a role between bone and muscle.
Postural imbalances, repetitive actions, sustained contractions, and prolonged stress/tension, form adhesions in your fascia, locking the muscle fiber in shorter and shorter lengths.
The deep and intense therapy of Rolfing releases these adhesions in the fascia allowing the muscle fiber to return to its proper full length increasing strength immediately and restoring proper range of motion.
Rolfing is the deepest of all the different types of bodywork. As a result it is able to release these deep and dense fibers in the body which are causing the pain, stiffness and range of motion issues. It is intense but satisfying in that you can feel the changes happening in the moment and you will know it is working. This is why active people love being Rolfed as flexibility and strength are key to getting the most out of your life.
To understand it deeper…
Lets consider the flexibility of a newborn baby to illustrate the point of fascial adhesions. Newborns are able to touch their toes to their shin bones! The foot completely folds up as there are little to no connective tissue adhesions. Over time as the child begins to push themselves forward by crawling and then to stand holding onto an object the muscle fibers are contracted and sustained allowing for the connective tissue to begin forming adhesions.
These adhesions begin to provide the necessary stability for the young child to stand and eventually walk. Of course as this stability comes in flexibility goes out and the child can no longer touch the toes to the shins. So adhesions are supposed to form, they assist us in our posture and activities but when they get too tight or too abundant then flexibility is reduced too far and that is where Rolfing comes in.
Rolfing is extremely effective at correcting these restrictions in localized areas like plantar fasciitis in the feet or tendonitis in the elbows but what Rolfing is most well know for is the 10 series, a 10 session therapy to realign the posture of the body from toes to head. Described here.
Fascia is the tissue of structure
Pictured here is magnification of fascia showing its spiderweb like quality giving strength in multiple dimensions simultaneously . Think of an orange, it is 90% liquid but it still has a solid characteristic, all of that is provided by the fascia in the orange- the white translucent material in the image. The human body is made in a very similar manner and it is this tissue that Rolfers manipulate to create the profound and permanent changes.