Your first experience with Rolfing® is likely to be within a ten-series format. Rolfing is different from most forms of bodywork because it focuses on improving the organization of the entire structure, rather than focusing on the place that hurts, feels stiff, etc. Although massage is relaxing, you may find the same area bothering you again shortly after you leave the office. This is because the area that hurts is often a compensatory or secondary issue.
Your neck may hurt because you’re not getting the proper support from your feet, or your pelvis is askew, or your shoulders are rounding forward, or all of these. Until we balance the entire structure, that neck is going to stay strained trying to keep your head upright. Focusing where it hurts goes after the symptom, not the problem.
Designed by Dr. Ida Rolf, the ten-series is like a tune up for your body. The ten-series is a systematic approach to aligning your structure; each session builds upon the last and prepares the body for the next. The first three sessions work on the more superficial layers of connective tissue. Sessions four through seven remove strain from deeper layers of the body. The three remaining sessions organize and align the body as a whole, providing better balance, enhanced freedom of movement, and a higher energy level. If your schedule requires a break between sessions, after sessions three and seven are ideal stopping places in the process.
The ten-series provides Rolfers with a map, but as anyone who travels knows, “the map is not the territory.” Although structural goals may be similar, the same session may look very different for different clients based on their structure, learned behaviors, and movement patterns. Each session is as unique as the person receiving it.