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Intro to Rolfing: Structural Integration for Moving Bodies

Open Source Arts
Event organized by Open Source Arts

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Breathing, Standing, Sitting, Walking and other Radical Movements: Rolfing in the context of daily life

If you suffer with ongoing aches and pains, general stiffness, or the legacy of past injury, illness or trauma, Rolfing is likely to help you.

If you work in a physically demanding profession or have a very active lifestyle, you might also be keen to find out what Rolfing can offer to keep you working and moving to a ripe old age.

If you feel that the connection between your overall health and functionality and your body is something you’d like to investigate and understand more deeply, then Rolfing is certain to have something for you.

In this introductory workshop, I’m interested in opening up what might seem like a mysterious and under-known area of bodywork and movement: Rolfing, or as it is also known, Structural Integration. Regardless of whether you have an interest in the therapy itself, the holistic perspective of a connected body that Rolfing proposes is one that is gathering momentum and currency as approaches like yoga, tai chi and other integrative movement practices become part of mainstream movement culture. The ideas and themes that we’ll explore are great for refreshing how you conceptualise and perceive your body, your patterns and your habitual postures.

The workshop will begin with a short talk/open discussion, which I’ll happily tailor to address questions/curiosities from participants as we go, followed by some experiments with crucial and everyday movements like breathing. I’m interested in making this accessible to all bodies - no special expertise required. You can attend both parts and participate as much/not as you feel comfortable.


What is Rolfing?

A hands-on manual therapeutic and educational method developed by the American bio-chemist Dr. Ida Rolf in the 1950s. Rolfing works with fascia, the body-wide system that you’ve (possibly) never heard of.

So what is fascia then?

Fascia is quite literally everywhere in our bodies: organs are wrapped in fascia, muscles slide along inside their fascial wrappings... even nerves glide in fascial sheaths! It is the connective tissue net that communicates between the tiniest cells to the biggest muscle structures (and all the organs in between).

What can Rolfing do?

It’s particularly helpful in addressing patterns of chronic strain/repetitive motion and less than ideal postural habits - like the forward head posture induced by screen-heavy work, the ubiquitous lower back pain from slump-sitting in under-supportive chairs, or the RSI that might come from working with your hands.

How does that happen then?

We do this through manual and movement interventions (i.e., hands-on as well as functional movement) and perceptual work. We work together, client and Rolfer, to restore movement to areas that might have been closed off through injury, habit or stress and support greater balance through the whole of your structure. It’s the practice, so far as I can tell, of addressing your individual best potential for dealing with this situation we have on Earth called ‘gravity’.

£10 earlybird / concessions to be booked before 2/6/18
£11 thereafter or OTD