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5 Common Misconceptions About Rolfing

Written by Chris Corrales

December 6, 2021

One of the most common misconceptions about Rolfing is that it is a form of massage. This couldn’t be further from the truth. While there are some similarities, such as pressure and release techniques, Rolfing goes much deeper than just a rub down. Another misconception is that if you have an injury or pain in one area, then you should get work done on that specific spot. The reality is that sometimes our bodies need help all over to reach balance and wellness. In this article, we will discuss 5 common misconceptions about Rolfing so you can learn what it is before making up your mind.

How Is Rolfing Different From Other Bodywork Modalities?

    Rolfing is different from other bodywork modalities in that Rolfers are trained to locate and release the chronic, shortening or tightening of muscles. These shortened areas can cause the body’s structure to become misaligned or asymmetrical over time, when this happens, pain can develop because our bodies weren’t designed to function with these imbalances. Rolfers use their hands like mirrors of your posture, when they find an area where you’re holding excess tension or postural stress through touch, they know there’s a corresponding place on your skeleton where you’ve created some stiffness or imbalance somewhere else. The goal is for them to help lengthen those chronically tightened muscle fibers so you have more ease of movement, improved function, and less pain. Here are the five common misconceptions about Rolfing:

1.  Rolfing is a type of very deep tissue massage.

    Rolfing is not massage. It does, however, involve the physical manipulation of muscles and connective tissues (fascia) to re-align them in a way that promotes more complete functioning. While it can be quite deep at times, Rolfers are careful to work within what each client’s body will tolerate comfortably. For many people who come into their sessions with chronic tension or pain issues, such as backaches, there may only be one or two moments during an entire session when deeper pressure might be applied for short periods.

2. It’s only for people with very specific issues.

    Some people have the misconception that Rolfing is only for specific kinds of people. Many believe it’s only useful to those who are experiencing chronic pain or discomfort due to postural issues, injury, or age-related wear and tear. However, this isn’t always the case. While some benefit from treatment if they have these conditions specifically, you can also receive incredible benefits even without any injuries or pre-existing problems. It all depends on what your goals are as a person, not everyone needs help with their back health after an accident at work led to chronic stiffness in certain parts of their spine. This is why it’s important to remember that Rolfing may be able to improve things other than just structural balance, ask yourself if you’re ready to receive the benefits of these sessions.

3. Rolfing will make you weak.

    Another common misconception about Rolfing is that it will make you weak, or turn you into a pile of jelly on the floor. While some new clients are nervous they’ll become overly loose and wobbly after their session, this isn’t normally how things go down when receiving treatment. The reason many newbies feel like they can’t even sit up straight during their first visit is that your body naturally tightens itself in response to pressure being applied over time, but this doesn’t mean all muscles get stronger at once, especially if someone has had chronic issues resulting from injury or age-related wear-and-tear. It takes practice to be able to notice small changes happening within our bodies over time, and the only way to do this is through consistent sessions.

4. Rolfing is a quick fix.

    Even though Rolfing may be able to help with chronic issues, it doesn’t just magically improve everything overnight. The body responds over time and you have to keep going back for more sessions to see full benefits from your work together as a client and a Rolfer. In some cases, this can take only one session if someone has been free of injuries or other complaints for years without needing maintenance care, but most people experience gradual changes that increase over time until they ultimately reach their goals after several visits. If anything drastic happens right away then something’s probably wrong! It’s important not to stop coming because even small problems can quickly when left untreated, so don’t give up after just one or two sessions.

5.  Rolfing is painful.

    Understandably, people assume Rolfing will be a painful experience because we’re all used to thinking of pain as the primary indicator something isn’t right in our bodies. However, this often can mean it’ll take some time for clients and therapists alike to get past the idea of pain leading us towards important discoveries about what our bodies need. It takes practice to learn when discomfort during sessions is an indication that your body needs more support or attention from you, rather than just being part of the process. Always remember that having serious injuries might not always lead to immediate pain, so don’t give up after just one session if there are no signs yet that anything has changed since your last visit.

    It may seem like there are a lot of misconceptions out there about Rolfing. But don’t worry, we’re here to help you get the facts straight so that you can make an informed decision for yourself and your loved ones. Feel free to give us a call if you have any more questions, or just want someone who understands what it’s like to walk in your shoes. Our team is ready and waiting for your call today.

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