Rolfing® structural integration (SI) is a brand of bodywork that falls under the category of structural integration.
Sessions are performed either as an individually tailored program or as a 10-part series methodology, using soft tissue manipulation and Rolf Movement™ to release the whole-body connective-tissue stress patterns that can prevent optimal movement and cause pain.
Originally trained as a biochemist, Dr. Ida Rolf was an avid student of yoga, osteopathy, and homeopathy. She began to apply their principles to her wellness routine. Later, she directed her focus on the effects of gravity on the fascial structure of the body.
Years of investigation led Dr. Rolf to believe that the imbalances in structure placed demands on the body's pervasive network of soft tissues: muscles, fascia, tendons, and ligaments are all connected, thereby creating compensations throughout the body structure.
She developed soft tissue methods of intervention with the goal to restore proper function and movement. In order to pass along her work to others and to make the education process accessible, she developed an expedient series of 10 sessions, which became known as the Ten Series.
Dr. Rolf's life work led to the system of soft tissue manipulation and movement education now called Rolfing® Structural Integration. It has also influenced and/or inspired others to do further research and/or develop their own schools of SI, demonstrating how Dr. Rolf continues to be seen as a pioneer and leader in this field.
Following an extensive initial intake interview, patient feedback and dialogue respective to the patient's treatment experience are an ongoing and important part of each session.
Assessment often includes gait, posture, and functional movement analysis. The treatment method focuses on the network of soft tissues and movement re-education.
Hands-on contact may use light or deep pressure as required and is applied along fascial and other soft tissue layers. These interventions can also include passive and active movement of the patient. Some specific movement education may be incorporated during or at the end of a treatment session.
Rolfing® SI sessions sequentially work through different areas and layers of the body. Practitioners (a.k.a. Rolfers™) use the Rolfing® Ten Series as a guideline, adjusting the rate of progression and number of visits specific to the needs of the client.
Rolfing® structural integration can help to restore soft tissue imbalances to a more a "normal" state. The result can be shown as a more balanced structure, increased range of motion, and more efficient movement.
In turn, once the fascial system is balanced and organized, results may include reduced stress, increased economy of movement, decreased fatigue, and a reduction or elimination of pain.
A level of training that includes every competency component needed to safely and appropriately apply the treatment.
An additional treatment that first requires the practitioners to be trained in an appropriate related discipline.