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Got Chronic Pain? Try Rolfing® For Fast, Natural Relief

August 26, 2020

Every week my office phone rings or the emails come in from people with chronic, longstanding pain wanting to know more about Rolfing®. They have heard this or that or just found it on an internet search and have the need to know more. Part of my job is to educate people about this work, explain why it works and point out that it has had a devout following for pain relief since the early 1970’s when the Rolf Institute was founded in Boulder, Colorado.

We Rolfers, those trained in the teachings of Dr. Ida P. Rolf, see the body as structural form with balance and order. We see the body as an aggregate of vertical blocks that are stacked on top of one another giving support throughout. In many cases due to accidents, injuries or past traumas, those blocks are twisted or turned, shifted forward or backward and have little structural integrity. This disorder creates chronic imbalance which results in stiffness, pain and lack of ease.

To Rolfers, the organ of support, the soft or connective tissue and the fascial network, is what supports and moves the bones while the bones serve as merely spacers. Fascia is a thin membrane that wraps around individual muscles, a grouping of muscles, and also lies just under the surface of the skin. This membrane system along with muscles, tendons and ligaments make up the soft or connective tissue of the body, basically everything but the bone. Through the direct manipulation of all of the body’s soft tissue, we strive to reorder the basic organization of the body and get it back into balance. With balance comes freedom. This all makes sense to people. This is why I am starting my fortieth year as a Rolfer!

The last thirty-nine years have flown by. I have seen so many “miracles” in my practice. I have worked with a baby who was struggling to walk because he couldn’t extend his heels receive a few moments of “spot” work and the next day began to stand and walk. I have seen people struggling with pain after that car accident, regain their order and balance and get well again. Sports injuries, chronic areas of re-injury, like that ankle that continues to feel weak and is vulnerable to being resprained, do well with Rolfing®.

What is Rolfing® and why does it work? When the body gets injured, the fascia or connective tissue releases a gelatinous substance that lubricates the area. After some time, that lubricant dries out, acts like glue and begins to get all the layers of tissue stuck down to one another. This begins to show up as lack of range of motion, stiffness, less flexibility and chronic aches or pain. Simply put, if the connective tissue is pulling the bones unevenly, the body lacks support. To get that support back, direct manipulation by hand using specific pressure releases the “glueing” of the fascia which allows the muscles and soft tissue to go back to their natural balanced state. When this happens, flexibility increases, pain and stiffness disappear, and the body is once again doing what it is supposed to do, feel free and easy.

Five years ago, I met 55-year-old Monique. She had been a nurse at a local hospital for many years. When she was 26, she had slipped in a patient’s room and two months later had her left anterior cruciate ligament surgically repaired. She was casted from her groin to her ankle for 16 weeks, had a lot of physical therapy, and complained her leg was never right. She compromised by not being too active and always wearing flat shoes. Any activity reignited her left knee pain, 15 minutes on an elliptical machine, walking in the city for a day, and sudden motion would bring it on. She always felt twisted. This feeling stayed with her for 29 years.

Going through 10 sessions of Rolfing® reconfigured her body and finally got that twist out of her system. Halfway through the sessions, Monique mentioned that her knee was less problematic and was not in her conscious thought 24/7. The surgery repaired the acute initial problem but nothing identified the trauma to her body in that fall. We untwisted tissue, organized her pelvis, worked directly around her knee and finished the sessions with a new way to live, pain and worry-free. Five years after her completion of the 10 session Rolfing® series, Monique’s knee issue is history and her occasional “tune-ups” are for other issues that creep in during the course of living life.

After 39 years of doing this powerful work, I see miracles all the time. I invite you to look at my website, call me or email me with any questions. I’ll be around for a long time, but why wait?

Sharon Sklar is in her 39th year of private practice as a Certified Advanced Rolfer. State licensed and the only Rolfer in Central CT, Sharon works with direct manipulation of the soft tissue of the body and movement re-education over a ten-session series to help her clients feel freer, get more balanced and reduce chronic pain. Call 860.561.4337 for more info or to schedule a consultation.

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