A major goal of the first Rolfing session is to give the spine more adaptability. In the photo you can see that Kate holds her hips forward and the spine & shoulders end up working hard to catch up. “She’s behind her line”, in Rolfer speak. To address this, I worked on back of the hips because it’s an area that’s holding & pushing the hips forward.
To integrate the changes we talked about the feet; Kate’s weight travels down through the heels mainly. If she could use the toes more it would give the pelvis the support it needs to rest further back.
Leaning forward is the obvious way of bringing more weight into the toes, but this doesn’t help. I asked Kate to try and send her toes down into the floor, so that the support form the toes matched the heel. This opens the angle of the foot & shin slightly so the hips can move back. We looked at a lot of other thing in this session but this feels like the main theme. I’m interested to see what Kate has to say.
Here’s what Kate had to say
James and I began our course of 10 rolfing sessions today! I always look forward to Rolfing sessions with James as I get such an enormous amount from them. Today I felt impatient about my ongoing hamstring injury (a 10 year old+ injury) and found myself waiting to work on “the bit that hurts”. When I have sore shoulders, tired legs, or stiffness in my back, I want that particular part to be addressed directly and with great force (ie. with deep massage, pressure, etc), but often it makes the injured or sore area inflamed and more painful. James quoted Ida Rolf to me as he was working on my hip: “where the pain is, it isn’t”. How true… I was surprised to find that other places in my body spoke more to my hamstring, ie. “the bit that hurts”. Oh James, such wisdom.
After being treated today i felt as if my feet were almost buoyant; like they were being sprung back up off the floor without the usual weight of my legs and body pressing them down. There was some pretty intense leg work, enough to render me fairly speechless, but it felt necessary and important. Without trying to sound hyperbolic, I felt like a changed person after the session. My awareness shifted so dramatically, and all of a sudden i was thinking about the inward rotation of my ankle and the gentle outward rotation of my leg. I said to James after he had asked me to imagine this rotation, “that’s fine and all, but how am I supposed to integrate that into my life?” and nonchalantly he responded, “well, you just have.” He is right, of course; by imagining my body moving in a certain way, I am already creating an awareness of it. I am already starting to do what I need to do.
Rolfing is magic. I feel like I am doing something important for myself. It makes me feel courageous to look at my own body and BE in it, honestly and truthfully, rather than hiding behind excuses for why I may not be flexible enough, strong enough, able to stand up straight and let my feet feel the ground. Bring on session 2!