What is Structural Integration?

"There is a pattern, an order, in human bodies... When the body gets working appropriately, the force of gravity can flow through.  Then, spontaneously, the body heals itself."
~ Ida P. Rolf

Structural integration was developed by Ida P Rolf.  It is a systematic whole body approach to realignment through reorganization of the connective tissue, or fascial, matrix found within the body.  Connective tissue, or fascia, encompasses every bone, muscle, organ, blood vessel, and nerve in our bodies in a web like fashion, connecting all aspects of our bodies together.  Because of this connection, something that may occur in one area may have further reaching effects than what we realize.  When your fascia shortens, thickens and becomes glue-like, it locks in less-than optimal patterns of strain and pulls your body out of alignment. 

Structural Integration Before and After

There are obvious things that we do.  For example, compensating for an injury may put strain on one area of the body while the another area has less mobility.  However, there are other components of our lives that can also affect our physical structure.  Movement patterns and the way in which our bodies respond to certain emotional stimuli can also affect our structure and cause us to take on less than optimal alignment.  When we a out of alignment, gravity, that never ending force that is constantly affecting us every moment of our existence, can start to have more negative effects as certain areas take on additional tension in order to keep us upright and moving forward.  Dr. Rolf's work is based insight that your body is more at ease and functions most effectively when its structure is balanced along the vertical line of gravity. In this place, gravity gently lifts and supports your body rather than pulling it down. By systematically restoring the integrity of your fascial system, your body becomes aligned and the entire system can be a more adaptable and fluidly functioning and coordinated whole. these compensations may show up in various places and in varying degrees, taking a whole body approach toward more optimal alignment ensures that each area of compensation is addressed, thus leading to a higher probability for a more highly functioning form.   

The field of gravity is an unseen force consistently interacting with the human body. Structural Integration reeducates the person and the human body to live and move in harmony with the field of gravity instead of being in conflict with it.

“What is Structural Integration”  ©2009 New School of Structural Integration