4022 Tennyson St. Denver, CO (Inside Berkeley Community Acupuncture).
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I do Rolfing, otherwise known as structural integration, and deep tissue. The difference, in reality, is what our overall goals for the session are. Clients come in wanting to address aches and pains immediately and directly. If we are not planning to work toward more long term goals, we will simply do a deep tissue session. If we are going to do a series in which we will build support for changes to be made in following sessions, we can do a Rolfing series. In doing so, we work on freeing up structures in a logical order, with the aim that the client will be able to adopt and adapt to those changes, thus retaining the work we have done. In this way, Rolfing is more sophisticated than deep tissue, and the results are more long lasting. In reality, Rolfing is not a modality but a process of transformation. This might not mean much to someone who comes in with pain in their neck or shoulders and just wants that addressed now, but the overarching questions that come to mind are "what is really causing that pain? Is it being caused by structure and posture in general? Why does it keep coming back"? I am always happy to address aches and pains, and I charge the same for deep tissue as I do for Rolfing, but at some point people who want lasting results will tend to gravitate towards Rolfing.
The body has its own innate intelligence. In working to free up structures that are stuck, and stack those structures in a more natural way, gravity begins to assist us in standing up straight and moving more gracefully. We work to free up holding patterns that are no longer needed, and give expression to new patterns. If they are useful and the client is able to adopt them, they will. In this way we are not simply working with bones and muscles, we are working with the nervous system, making lasting changes that will allow the body's own natural intelligence to express itself. The results for some can be life changing. Everyone benefits from this work in some way.
Deep Tissue, Structural Integration, and Rolfing
Deep Tissue, contrary to common belief, is not just a "hard massage". Unfortunately this is often what people get, when they request deep tissue, as therapists are commonly not properly trained in it, but often pretend they are to get more business. They are usually just delivering a hard Swedish massage. As Swedish massage is not really designed for deep specific pressure, the results can be anywhere from ineffective to unpleasant, or even dangerous to both the client and the practitioner.
Properly conducted deep tissue is aimed at reaching specific muscle groups both superficial and deep. This does not have to be and should not be overly painful. It is important to work with the person in terms of pressure and what they feel comfortable and safe with. Oil is not used for this type of work so more traction can be gained, allowing direct access to the underlying muscle groups below. We look at posture and holding patterns, trying to lengthen muscles that are short and free up the connective tissue causing holding patterns.
Rolfing, otherwise known as structural Integration was first developed by Ida Rolf in the early 1960's. Paying attention to the structure of the individual and their organization in gravity, both when standing and walking, Rolfing seeks to develop a better relationship with all the parts of an individual to the whole. This is usually done through soft tissue, facial, and joint manipulation in an ordered sequence though a series of 10 sessions or so, each one building on the last one. The goal is to bring form to its optimal function.
For more detailed information on the process of the Rolfing 10 Series, visit the next page, and feel free to send me an email if you have any questions.