ROLFED. Week One.

As an instructor and athlete, I need a lot of massage and bodywork to keep my machine running. Its hard to find a therapist who has the knowledge and skills to provide a massage that is sports specific and can go the distance in helping me with all my body issues. Throughout the years, I’ve seen many massage therapists and had my share of unsatisfying spa experiences. Massage appointments would provide a quick fix for relaxation and relief. But never would a session work to solve the root cause of my pain or help with the biomechanical issues that caused it in the first place. It is an expensive and sometimes frustrating body care plan. Knowing you need massage to prevent injury and pain, but also knowing that the benefits of massage treatment wouldn’t last long.

Marie was introduced to me as EQUINOX’s resident “rolfer”. Having never heard of the technique before, I had to find out what Rolfing was and why it was considered a unique and specialized form of body therapy. What is Rolfing and why is it a standout spa service? I sat down with Marie and got to learn more… you can read all about my fascinating findings HERE.

After learning all about it, I was too curious NOT to enroll myself into the 10 session series of Rolfing. I had to find out if this unique technique actually WORKED. If this type of massage could provide MORE than a quick fix, but rather a long term solution to my body’s pain issues. I went for it… and began the great ROLFING experiment. I thought it would be fun to document my findings on this blog and give you the insider scoop on my rolfing experience. Read along and join me on my journey towards developing a more “in-touch” relationship to my body and (hopefully!) a massage method which will bring more balance , vitality, and health.

The 10 sessions of Rolfing – Structural Integration

Sessions 1-3: Focus on superficial layers

Session 1. This session focuses on freeing the lungs to allow fuller breath, and beginning to free the shoulder and pelvic girdles from the ribcage. This is accomplished by working superficial tissue around the ribcage, shoulders, arms, and hips. Neck and back work is included at the end of almost every session to balance and integrate the work into the body.

My first appointment focused on the shoulders, spine, and hips. It was an intense and painfully pleasurable 80 minutes. At the beginning of the appointment, Marie checked my posture and spinal alignment in several different standing positions. She then moved me to the massage table to begin work on my shoulders and arms. We continued on to work the spine, hips, and neck.There was a method to her madness and reason behind addressing each of these areas in our first session. It was fascinating to learn more and made me aware of parts of my body I hadn’t thought twice of before. Most of the techniques she used I had never experienced in a massage appointment, especially the deep release work in my upper chest and back. It wasn’t as intense as rolfing is rumored to be, just different, new, and eye-opening. Throughout the session, Marie had me sit up, check in, and see if I experienced a difference or change in my structure.  Even after our short time together I was surprised to notice a dramatic shift in how my body felt and functioned. I found the first session to be relaxing yet incredibly energizing. I left our appointment feeling invigorated and eager to come back for more. Counting the seconds till session two…. I have a feeling this “rolfing experiment” of mine is going to be POWERFUL!

Have you tried Rolfing before? What was your experience?

For more on Marie and the Rolfing technique, check out this POST, or Marie’s website at: http://www.mariethiebaud.massagetherapy.com/

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