What the heck is Structural Bodywork?

Structural Bodywork is the specific treatment of soft tissue pain due to injury, malalignment and postural deviations.

Structural bodywork is not really a massage, though it operates under a massage license most of the time. And it’s not the same service you would get from a physical therapist or chiropractor. The roots of structural bodywork stem from many different forms of therapy and movement. Ida Rolf created a manual therapy system called structural integration and founded the Rolf Institute of Structural Integration in 1971. Since then structural integration has evolved into many different forms, but the original premise has changed very little.

There are 4 principles of structural bodywork according to the rolfsi.com website. Let me sum them up for you.

1. We have evolved to in response to gravity. Gravity determines what is physically efficient or inefficient. And unless you are in space, gravity is going to win. The best thing to do is work with it.

2. The skeleton is precisely arranged geometry, and it could be disorganized or distorted in some way. For instance: one leg is longer than the other, the shoulders are tilted or the knees are pointed in random directions there is a reason for it.

3. Fascia is really REALLY important. It surrounds every muscle and muscle fiber. The Force is to Jedis as fascia is to muscle. It surrounds it, shapes it and makes it crooked or makes it straight. It can be used for good and evil. Use the fascia Luke, let go Luke.

4. Movement, or the lack thereof organizes the body. If movement is disorganized the body will be disorganized. If movement is organized, guess what? That’s right, the body is organized. Disorganized movements make more disorganization. Walking in heels is a disorganized movement. Sitting and standing with bad posture is a disorganized movement.