How does structural integration work?
It is now recognised that all of the systems in the body e.g. muscle, bone, nerve etc, are governed and affected by an over-arching system. It connects all the other systems together so they can regulate healthy function of the entire body. This is called the myofascial system. By working with the myofascial system alone, we can affect the functioning of all the others.
“Fascia is the organ of posture. Nobody ever says this, all the talk is about muscles!” Ida Rolf
The myofascial system is all the connective tissue that permeates every aspect and region of your body. It surrounds, penetrates, supports and shapes every tissue it connects with. It consists of thin strands of elastic collagen fibres which form an intricate and seamless web, shown in the picture of muscle fibres to the left. All of your muscles, bones and organs etc are suspended within this voluminous, 3-dimensional, body shaped “scaffold” network.
Structural Integration works by manipulating the myofascial scaffold to reposition the muscles and bones embedded within.
The body can become misaligned and distorted for a variety of reasons
- the continuous pull of gravity
- poor posture during the stress of daily activities
- physical injury
- emotional trauma
Due to these insults, the fascia gradually shortens, tightens and adjusts posture to accommodate the misalignment. Without resolution, these insults accumulate one upon another. This accelerates a body wide, inefficient imbalance resulting in stiffness, discomfort and loss of energy, as if driving a car with the handbrake stuck on!
Structural Integration aligns and balances the body by softening, lengthening and repositioning the fascia. As fascia is lengthened it allows the muscles to move more efficiently, repositioning bones and other tissues back to their structurally optimal position.
Structural Integration is an experience through which you can become more aware of your own body. It is a process designed to bring the entire body into balance and vertical alignment with the field of gravity. A fully integrated structure can impact the whole person, physically, emotionally, and energetically.
Your body is ultimately an “autobiography”, your history revealed in your body’s geography and biology. You are unique, so your individual experience plays a central role in Structural Integration’s transformational aspects.
“Structural Integration is not a treatment but a preparation for the use of gravity.” Ida Rolf.