Why do people come for Rolfing?

People come for Rolfing for a variety of reasons. Chronic tension and pain are usually the motivating factor. In today’s world there doesn’t seem to be a shortage. Basic Rolfing* is generally a ten session series; each session has a specific set of anatomical territories and goals for each session. The sessions are like ten parts with an overall goal for a body that is better balanced within the gravitational field. If a body is disorganized due to injuries, accidents, chronic repetitive movements and life trauma, there is disorder among the segments. That is what Dr. Rolf called the “random” body. There are no lines of order for the body to organize around. Tension, strain, rotations and compression are the result of that body trying to adapt to the disorder. A disorganized, random body will not fall over; it will adapt. It will develop strain lines within the connective tissue called fascia. It is effective but not efficient. It requires more energy to function in that type of structure. The person living inside of that structure is probably exhausted and tends to be in a bad mood. They are likely to be less healthy as structure (form) determines function and function determines physiology (how it works) or pathology (disease). That was a mouthful but simply put, life-force energy doesn’t flow freely in the disorganized structure. Tension and discomfort becomes this person’s unwelcome friend. Gravity is his enemy! It pulls him apart as there is no central line of organization and he experiences tension, strain, compression and rotations between joint spaces as he is working to stay upright.

According to Dr. Rolf, “Some individuals may perceive their losing fight with gravity as a sharp pain in their back, others as the unflattering contour of their body, others as constant fatigue, yet others as an unrelentingly threatening environment. Those over forty may call it old age. And yet all these signals may be pointing to a single problem so prominent in their own structure, as well as others, that it has been ignored: they are off balance, they are at war with gravity.

After Rolfing, a person has a well-organized, balanced body. There is a clear stacking of the segments. What I call the “gravity girdle”, giving lift and being supported by the force of gravity. Gravity wins every time! There is good space between joints, as there should be. It’s well organized. There is no undue tension, strain, compression or rotations upon the segments. It is more energetically efficient. He has more energy available to enjoy life. This body looks and feels more comfortable. It is more flexible, have better mobility and is pain free. It’s easier to live in and the owner of this body is probably in a better mood.

This is the gospel of Rolfing: When the body gets working appropriately, the force of gravity can flow through. Then, spontaneously, the body heals itself.