What Is Structural Integration?
Structural Integration (SI) also known as "Rolfing" is a process oriented therapy, involving manipulation through therapeutic touch, education and awareness. At its core SI is an exploration in the possibility of change and the awareness of being in your body. I create space for clients to release painful, stressful patterns both physical and mental. Wherever you may have experienced effort in day to day life, I work to help you find comfort, ease and a sense of support.
SI systematically addresses your body as a whole, usually over a series of sessions. This process brings relief from pain and discomfort as well as an awareness of how you are dwelling in your body. Sessions will assist you in relating to your physical experience and your environment in a new way. You will recognize patterns of holding that no longer serve you and discover new ways to move, adopt new sitting and standing postures and develop self-care techniques and shift your overall physical experience. Rather than chasing symptoms, I work to help your body integrate as a whole, so you are supported in the process of your life.
Structural Integration is the work of Dr. Ida P. Rolf, Ph.D.
Benefits of Structural Integration
Bodies are constantly growing, moving, and changing. Physical injuries, traumas, compensations for these events, occupational hazards and the stresses of life demand us to adapt the ways we embody our physical structure. These adaptations can become ingrained, even after they’ve fulfilled their initial functions. Over time natural movements like sitting, breathing, and walking require more effort than necessary. This effort can contribute to inhibited function, pain, stiffness, fatigue, and loss of vitality.
Structural Integration brings awareness to these antiquated patterns and facilitates the release of them. Your movement may become more effortless once these patterns begin to unwind. A sense of ease, efficiency, and coherence is often associated with this work. Many clients find relief from pain and discomfort during this work. We must consider that the SI process is individual and personal, so the potential effects and benefits are different for everyone.
Who Should Receive Structural Integration?
All people can benefit from Structural Integration; those who are searching to ease chronic pain and stress, improve their athletic performance or interested in increasing their awareness and vitality. People of all ages can receive SI.
Structural Integration Sessions
During the Structural Integration process, changes in your posture, movement, and physical experience are achieved through education, awareness, and therapeutic touch. The focus is on relationship, how you relate with your physical experience of yourself and your environment—rather than on any particular body part or region.
During the first session an intake process is performed, including your health and personal history, followed by an initial assessment of how you hold and move your body. You will remain clothed to whatever extent you wish, activewear is common. Typically, your standing posture, breath, gait (walking), and perhaps other movements are observed. I will use this information to tailor a session specifically for you.
I am trained in techniques to release fascial adhesions(myofascial release). A broad range of techniques may be used to acheive the goals of the SI process. The pressure used may vary form lighter to heavier, slow-moving to still, depending on intention and your response. At certain times during the session you may be asked to move, stand, sit, or comment on your experience during the session.
You may experience a variety of sensations ranging from pleasant to challenging. You are always in charge and your feedback will allow me to adjust the work accordingly—remember the session is always under your control.
Structural Integrators emphasize movement education in their practices, to varying degrees. Your practitioner can help you become aware of your habitual ways of holding and moving your body and help you explore easier, more natural ways of being. Movement education might address your habits of standing posture, breathing, walking, sitting, or any specialized movements you might perform in your daily life.
Usually, Structural Integration is performed over an initial series of 10 sessions that systematically organize your body as a whole, with each session preparing for the next and building on the previous. After your 10 initial series, you may opt for more sessions to further support your goals or pereiodic "tune up sessions".
Check out the link below to hear Bill's interview on Sacred Body Podcast!
Contact Bill here to schedule your session or a free phone consultation.