When my team at the NYC Chair Massage Company – www.eventschairmassage.com – offers stress management programs at trade shows we always use Rolfing and Somatics.
In Touch Somatics structural evaluation is a technique for determining the balance of the musculo-skeletal system usually through the evaluation of posture, breathing patterns, muscle strength and range of motion of the joints. Touch somatics is based on the assumption that one can reorganize connections between the brain and body to improve body movement, posture, structural integrity, kinesthetic functioning, and psychological states
A skilled Touch Somatics practitioner directs attention to habitual movement patterns (attentive movement) that are thought to be inefficient or strained, and attempts to teach new patterns using body manipulation, and gentle, slow, repeated movements. Slow repetition is believed to be necessary to impart a new habit and allow it to begin to feel normal. These movements may be passive (performed by the practitioner on the recipient’s body) or active (performed by the recipient). The recipient is fully clothed.
The pioneers in this approach aside from the great martial artists, dancers, yoga teachers, and gymnasts include F. Matthias Alexander, Elsa Gindler, and Gerda Alexander, and later Moshe Feldenkrais, Bonnie Cohen and others.
Before these pioneers developed their work many of the most popular exercise methods of the time focused only on the muscle strength or flexibility without any other goal. Feldenkrais wrote in 1952. “Judo is very different, each movement has a specific goal which is reached after a precise and supple execution.”
There are 5 key elements:
- Light hands-on-healing technique including traction of the head, ankles, arms and general ranger of motion and joint mobilization.
- Touch – Apply superficial strokes to release surface tension, and influence trigger points.
- Mysofasical unwinding strokes: This deeper and in the direction of the tissue
- Massage specific individual muscle fibers, connective tissue, fascia, scar tissue, and adhesions at a deeper level.
- Movement evaluation and re-education
Rolfing is a holistically oriented form of alternative medicine originally developed by Ida Rolf (1896–1979) as Structural Integration. It is typically delivered as a series of ten hands-on physical manipulation sessions sometimes called “the recipe”. It is based on Rolf’s ideas about how the human body’s “energy field” can benefit when aligned with the Earth’s gravitational field. Practitioners combine superficial and deep manual therapy with movement prompts. The process is sometimes painful.
At the time of its development the principles of Rolfing contradicted the viewpoint of most mainstream medical theory about the relationship with the body and the mind. With the development of research on Body-Mind integration many of Rolf’s ideas have received greater respect and investigation.
Ida Rolf described the body as organized around an axis perpendicular to the earth, parallel to the pull of gravity, and she believed the function of the body was optimal when it was organized in that way. She saw the body as continually in a struggle with gravity; in her view, gravity tends to shorten fascia, leading to disorder of the body’s arrangement around its axis and creating imbalance, inefficiency in movement, and pain. Rolfers aim to lengthen the fascia in order to restore the body’s arrangement around its axis and facilitate improved movement. Rolf also discussed this in terms of “energy” and said:
Rolfers make a life study of relating bodies and their fields to the earth and its gravity field, and we so organize the body [so] that the gravity field can reinforce the body’s energy field. This is our primary concept.
On its website as of August 2016, the Rolf Institute of Structural Integration described Rolfing as “a form of bodywork that reorganizes the connective tissues, called fascia, that permeate the entire body.”
Though Rolf never intended her work be classified as a type of massage restrictive state laws on massage and psychology have forced Rolfing style manipulation into a narrow category of bodywork massage. Some osteopaths were influenced by Rolf, and some of her students became teachers of massage, including one of the founders of myofascial release.
Rolf claimed to have found an association between emotions and the soft tissue, writing “although rolfing is not primarily a psychotherapeutic approach to the problems of humans”, it does constitute an “approach to the personality through the myofascial collagen components of the physical body”. She claimed Rolfing could balance the mental and emotional aspects of subjects, and that “the amazing psychological changes that appeared in Rolfed individuals were completely unexpected”. Rolfers suggest their manipulations can cause the release of painful repressed memories. Rolfers also hold that by manipulating the body they can bring about changes in personality so, for example, teaching somebody to walk with confidence will make them a more confident person. The connection between physical structure and psychology has not been proven by scientific studies.
One of the explanations for the body-mind connection in Rolfing and similar technique applying deep tissue manipulation is the concept of cellular memory.
Body-mind explorations as practiced by the NYC Corporate Chair Massage Company – www.eventschairmassage.com – integrates corporate stress management with touch, bodywork, movement and chair massage.
Lewis Harrison – is a massage therapist, motivational speaker – www.Nostressspeaker.com – writer, mentor, success and wealth coach, and an entrepreneur specializing in problem solving and strategizing based on game thinking, applied game theory and Game Thinking.
He is the author of over twenty-two books published in five languages.
If you are interested in business success in life coaching, stress management or corporate chair massage you need to read Lewis’ recently published business books.
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This course and all the offerings on www.RealUGuru.com focus on the application of applied game thinking, gamification, decision science, positive psychology, happiness, and visionary thinking to solve basic, complex and extreme problems. He is the creator of a free course on business success and human potential.
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Today’s stress management blog is presented by a grant from Events Chair Massage –www.EventschairMasssage.com – a company that offers Corporate Chair Massage and Stress Management Services to meeting planner, event planners, party planners and HR for Trade show booths throughout the United States.
Chair Massage can help increase productivity for any business. Here is a great video on how to do Chair Massage.
To learn more call 212-724-8782