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Structural Integrator

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Frequently Asked Questions

What happens in the free consultation?

I review your health questionnaire that you can fill our prior to the appointment and I will ask more detailed questions about your health history based on your responses on the questionnaire. Then, we spend some talking about what goals and intentions you have based on your health situation and body structure. From there I can create a treatment plan based on your goals and I will provide you with more details on the 10 series. I may also observe you while standing, walking and other general movements.

How do I choose a practitioner offering Rolf Method Structural Integration or other fascia work?

The International Association of Structural Integration provides a list of approved Structural Integration schools. Graduates from these schools have received an education approved by the Association. Neuro Movement Integration is the school were i trained and it is approved by the International Association of Structural Integration.

What type of clothes should I wear for my Structural Integration sessions?

To view and work on your structure it is necessary to wear "viewing clothes" for each session. For men, this would be something like a pair of briefs or boxer briefs. For women, this would be a 2-piece swimsuit or a sports bra and loose fitting shorts. The shorts need to be of short length and stretchy material. If possible wear the same viewing clothes each session. It is easier to view the changes when your clothing stays the same. It is important that you feel comfortable and secure during the sessions. If you are uncomfortable with these viewing clothes suggestions, please let me know and we can help find a workable alternative.

A Typical SI Session

Before we start the first session I will take your picture in front of a grid. I use the pictures to see areas of compensation in your body structure and to create awareness for the changes that are going to happen in your body going forward. They are private and will not be shared without your written consent. During the session you may experience a warm, pleasant sensation from the area that I am working on. I work within your comfort level applying the appropriate pressure, based on your feedback. The pressure cannot be painful because the body will identify it as trauma and and our goal is to repattern the nervous system. You will participate in the session by making small, specific movements in conjunction with the therapists movements to send positive signals to the nervous system. During the sessions, I will help you become aware of habitual patterns of movement and imbalances in your body and will help you to work toward making changes in these patterns. At the end of each session I will take your picture again. We will review the changes that have occurred to your structure during the session and then I will show you the re-patterning homework to reinforce the changes we just made.

How far apart can I do the sessions?

The sessions are optimally spaced one week apart for ten weeks in a row but can be tailored to your needs.

Do I need to do anything special after a Structural Integration session?

After each session it is recommended to take a 10-15 minute walk. Intense activity the day of treatment is not recommended. Drinking a lot of water a day or so after the session is also important. The connective tissue will start to change and soften and it needs to be hydrated so the layers are able to slide and glide over each other.

Is there anything else I should be doing besides my alignment and repatterning exercises?

Yes, there is a foam rolling program that is designed specifically for people that have been Structurally Integrated. This program consists of about 10 simple exercises to support the changes made during the sessions to keep your body vertically aligned and pain free. The program is called Relief Through Rolling and you can contact me for workshop dates to learn the techniques.

Can I do some sessions and stop when I feel better?

Not completing all 10 sessions can leave your body unbalanced and could cause discomfort and more compensations as time goes on. Dr Ida Rolf spent 30 years developing the 10 series and there are 10 sessions for a reason. It takes 10 to completely work through the whole body and to teach the nervous system how it needs to be working for optimal movement and posture in your body.

Do I need more sessions after I finish the 10 series?

It is typical to see positive changes in the body for another 6-12 months after the ten series is completed. 3 months after your 10th session, you can return for 1 hour tune-up sessions if necessary. If you keep up with your re-patterning exercises, follow the Relief Through Rolling foam rolling program and be in your line as much as possible, tune-up sessions may be spaced out to a few a year. If you work a very repetitive job, you may decide to come for a 1 hour tune-up session every few weeks or months but it is not needed to come weekly or monthly like other types of therapy and in fact it is counter intuitive. If you have a physical or emotional trauma or lengthy illness, tune-up sessions are indicated to help the healing process. The Rolf Method of Structural Integration 10 series is designed so you have the re-patterning and alignment homeworks to manage your own pain levels as opposed to needing to visit a therapist on a regular basis.

Is Rolf Method of Structural Integration covered under my Extended Health Insurance?

The Rolf Method of Structural Integration is under my scope of practice as a Registered Massage Therapist and is billed as Registered Massage Therapy. You will have to check your Extended Health Insurance plan to see if you have coverage for Registered Massage Therapy.

Will Structural Integration conflict with my other therapies?

Not at all, it actually enhances the other therapies and you will generally need much less treatment overall. It is recommended that you wait 2 days after a SI session before you have Massage therapy or Physiotherapy but Chiropractic and Osteopathic treatments are safe. The body needs at least 2 days to integrate the changes after a session and you don't want reverse the changes. After you complete your 10 series chiropractic adjustments hold a lot longer, you may need less physiotherapy treatment for muscle, tendon and ligament issues and you will feel less tension in your body overall and will require fewer massage treatments.

What areas of the body do you work on each session?

Superficial Extrinsic Sessions
  • Session 1 is the hour of vital capacity. The goals for this session are to begin opening the ribcage, free the shoulder girdle from the ribcage, lift the thorax off the pelvis and begin bringing the legs under the body. Opening the tissue in the rib cage area allows for an increase in oxygen and higher rate of cellular growth to help prepare the body for the next 9 sessions.
  • Session 2 is the hour of the feet and legs. The goals of this session are to balance the tibia and fibula, the malleoli, rebalance the arches within the foot, free the knee capsule, open the hip and free the pelvis from the thorax.
  • Session 3 is the hour of the quadratus lumborum. The goals for this session are creating a midline from the greater trochanter to the mastoid process, opening the lateral and posterior aspect of the ribcage, freeing the shoulder girdle from the ribcage, beginning the transition into the core or intrinsic layers by freeing the quadratus lumborum.
Core Intrinsic Sessions
  • Session 4 is the hour of the adductors. The goals of this session are to begin balancing the pelvis from side to side by freeing the adductors, create a midline from the malleolus to the ischial ramus and balance and free the floor of the pelvis.
  • Session 5 is the hour of the psoas. The goals of this session are to continue balancing the pelvis from front to back by lengthening the psoas, bring integrity to the floor of the pelvis an to begin to lengthen the cervicals by freeing the lumbars.
  • Session 6 is the hour of the sacrum. The goals of this session are to balance the sacrum within the pelvis, balance the spine by balancing the sacrum, continue to lengthen and free the lumbars to the thoracics and the thoracics to the cervicals.
  • Session 7 is the hour of the sphenoid. The goals of this session are freeing the head from the neck and neck from the shoulder girdle, balance and free the cranium and balance the sphenoid by working the intracranial fascial layers.
Balancing Sessions
  • Sessions 8 and 9 are the balancing sessions. One will balance the lower girdle and the other will balance the upper girdle. The goals of these sessions are to balance and integrate all the structures that have been freed up in the previous seven sessions.
  • Session 10 is the hour of the joints. The general goals of this session are to balance and free the joints, create horizontality within the joints, begin to tie structural and functional integration.

Gwen MacLean, Structural Integrator
Living Balance Clinic
Unit 2 - 551 Knights Hill Road, London, ON N6J 3A1
(519) 601-6602   info [snail] gwenmaclean [period] ca -> mailto:info [snail] gwenmaclean [period] ca

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