Rolfing in the News
Posted on September 26, 2011 by Joshua
The following Rolfing® articles explain the process.
New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/07/fashion/07rolfing.html
Science Magazine: http://www.rolf.org/content/pdf/press/Science%20Mag%2007.pdf
Vogue Magazine: http://www.rolf.org/content/pdf/press/Vogue%2007.pdf
Rolfing® for Athletes:
Triathletes, runners and endurance athletes are on a continuous quest to find balance in their training as well as their bodies. These athletes strive to push themselves, train hard, eat well and improve without injury and setbacks. But why do so many athletes work so hard only to suffer overuse injuries, strains or nagging pains coming back to haunt them? Isn’t there a way for athletes to improve consistently while maintaining a healthy balance of endurance, strength, flexibility and range of motion?
As a Certified Rolfer™ in Irvine, California, I set out to find answers to these questions and to examine how endurance athletes can continue to push their limits and move beyond nagging aches and pains without so much time off for recovery. In my quest to find a better balance in sports training for endurance athletes I found Triathletes and Marathon Runners who believe that Rolfing® is truly the key to injury prevention, rehabilitation, performance enhancement and lifelong well-being achieved through balance in the body.
Josh, now an Ironman Triathlete and Ultra-Marathon Runner discovered Rolfing® as a means of recovery from injuries incurred in his teens and 20’s. Prior to the Rolfing® Ten Series he found that as he ran and biked old injuries surfaced and aches and pains stopped him from competing. After receiving Rolfing his range of motion improved, flexibility increased and he was able to run faster and push himself further without pain. He now competes regularly and is training for his next Ironman with no pain.
For those new to Rolfing, most people opt to receive the Rolfing Ten Series which is like a “tune up” or “extreme makeover” for your entire body. Every session is roughly 75 minutes and most people receive one session per week for ten weeks. This ten session process restructures the body in segments, aiming for optimal flexibility and range of motion by balancing the body from front to back, side to side, top to bottom until complete integration is achieved. Each session builds upon the last and prepares the body for the next, integrating movement education to encourage long-term change and reduce the occurrence of future injury. Although ten sessions is recommended, most people experience very positive results after just one session.
How does it work? Rolfing®, improves range of motion by breaking down scar tissue, tension and old holding patterns. It is often the missing link for athletes who have reached a plateau in their performance or who are plagued with nagging injuries. Unlike massage, which works the muscle, Rolfing works with the 3-dimensional network of connective tissue in the body called fascia. Connective tissue consists of tendons and ligaments in the joints as well as the casing that surrounds each muscle fiber and covers every muscle in the body. It is the web that holds the body in alignment dictating our posture, flexibility and movement patterns.
Athletes put their bodies through rigorous, repetitive motions that can pull the web of fascia out of alignment causing joints (knees, ankles, back, neck, shoulders) to gradually tighten and build up scar tissue. This increased tension and strain can lead to pain, stiffness, tendonitis, lack of flexibility, increased injury and deceased performance. Rolfing® combats these effects by releasing the fascia surrounding tight muscles, lengthening tight tendons, breaking down scar tissue and increasing flexibility and range of motion. Rolfing rebalances the web of fascia around joints such as ankles, knees and hips that are often sources of pain and discomfort.
Maya, a budding athlete, experienced many breakthroughs while receiving her Rolfing Ten Series. She opted to come in once a week for ten weeks in the hope that she could reduce the pain she experienced when running and biking. Wincing to remember how she used to feel Maya explains, “Prior to Rolfing® my idea of exercise without pain was slow walking and gentle yoga. I was an runner and athlete in high school but I figured my glory days were behind me. I had a desk job and felt tight and stiff. I was plagued by chronic tendonitis and joint pain. It hurt my ankles, knees and hips to run more than a mile. Biking caused my neck and shoulders to ache and my low back to spasm. I just assumed that I had to take it easy or injure myself, I had no idea there was a solution to my pain and discomfort.”
Maya explains that each of the ten sessions was unique and each focused on different areas of the body- knees, hips, feet, shoulders, back etc. Throughout the process she was given numerous helpful tips and exercises to retrain her movement patterns and to integrate the Rolfing work. She was excited that each session was tailored towards her goal of running again and she particularly enjoyed how she was educated about her body and her movement patterns so she could prevent future injuries.
Maya was thrilled with the results, “The second session worked with my feet, ankles and lower legs. I learned about all the different bones, muscles and ligaments in my feet and released decades of tension and scar tissue that had build up in my knees, ankles and calves.” She explained that the Rolfing felt like a deep but comfortable stretch, not painful, just good. Towards the end of the session her walking and running patterns were assessed and she was taught how to use her feet and ankles to prevent injury and strain.
Now a triathlete and marathon runner Maya remembers “That second session was really the turning point in my recovery. I began to run small distances, increasing gradually and stopping as soon as something hurt.” Within two months she was running 8 miles with no pain. Three months later I did my first Olympic distance Triathlon with no pain. Little by little she increased her training, pushing herself harder and further. She moved up to do longer triathlons and marathons. “Rolfing broke down decades of tension, strain, bad posture and poor movement patterns and taught me how to use my body more efficiently so I will avoid tendonitis and strains.”
Tendonitis, stiffness and joint pain are often easily remedied by simply releasing tension in the fascia, bringing balance back into the body and retraining movement patterns. Remember how you felt when you were 8 years old? You could jump out of bed and run around outside without pain, stiffness or hesitation. You moved freely and it felt good. The goal of every session is to bring you back to that feeling. To allow you to enjoy movement, to feel great and to continue to strive towards improvement without the fear of injury or pain.
Many triathletes and marathon runners use Rolfing to speed injury recovery, increase flexibility, improve range of motion and optimize performance.
Call 949-939-0389 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule a session.
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