I got rolfed

My right hip/glute has been very unhappy the past couple weeks. It is has been a chronic injury since my gymnastics days, but it is usually more a mild annoyance than anything else. The last two weeks however it has been downright painful, especially when running and sitting. Copious amounts of foam rolling and yoga weren't helping, so when I saw a living social deal for rolfing, I decided to give it a try.


What is rolfing you ask?

Rolfing is a physically applied practice, administered by a qualified practitioner, typically in a series of ten sessions with the objective of maximising individual well being of body and mind. This holistic approach brings together awareness, coordination, structure and psychology. Rolfing was invented by Dr. Ida Rolf, who developed the technique of manipulating the body’s connective tissues in order to release stress patterns within the human form.
 source 

Rolfing is based on the theory that muscles work in opposing pairs: one contracts while the other relaxes. Bound up fasciae restrict opposing muscles from functioning in concert. Rolfing aims separate the fibers of bound up fasciae manually to loosen them and allow effective movement.


My rolfing experience started with me stripping down to my underwear and standing and walking in front of the rolfer. This was a little embarrassing for me since I don't really enjoy being almost naked in front of a stranger. But, I quickly overcame my embarrassment because I was impressed by how much she could tell about me just by the way I look and move. She figured out that I had been a gymnast, broke my right ankle, and suffer from plantar fasciitis.

She then sat me down and explained more about rolfing, asked for some more history, and asked me about why I had come and what my goals were.

I then laid down on the table and she took me through a series of manipulation and breathing exercises, starting with my chest and back, moving down to my hips and upper legs, and then to my calves and feet. She finished with a few minutes on my neck and head. Some of it hurt, a lot. But it was a "hurts so good" pain, like during a deep massage. My rolfer did a great job explaining what she was doing and the theory behind it. I felt like I was getting a great education in addition to a physical benefit. 

The session lasted about an hour and half and when I stood up at the end I could feel immediate results. My stride was more fluid and my hip felt much less restricted. I was also standing up straighter and feel like I was breathing easier.

My rolfer recommended the series of ten, which is supposed to  "balance and optimize both the structure (shape) and function (movement) of the entire body. It progresses from the feet to the head, under the theory that "only by bringing peace 'from the ground up' can problems higher in the body be 'understood'"

I am pretty tempted, but it is expensive. Each session is $100! And I just bought a new furnace and did major car repairs.

Have you ever tried rolfing? Do you think I should splurge on the series of 10?




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