In Sessions Eight, Nine and Ten of Dr. Rolf’s Ten Session Recipe, our primary focus is on supporting the vertical and radial alignment of all the body’s weight-bearing segments, and the transfer of movement through the body’s structural core.
There are, of course, many things that can affect radial and vertical alignment, which in turn affect the transfer of motion. Most obvious is the radial alignment of the arms and legs, and torsion between the spine and the girdles. But rotation and torsion between the body’s outer sleeve and its inner core can also have a significant impact on the body’s alignment, structural stability and transfer of motion through the spine and core.
As more and more of the body’s weight-bearing segments are mobilized and aligned, it becomes easier to see and feel where movement through the spine and core is blocked or forced to rotate. And to see how mobilizing and aligning one area can support mobilization and alignment in another.
For example, we have observed in class and clinic that with the easing of rotation and strain between the legs and pelvis, strain between the SI joints and sacrum has also eased. And as rotation and side-to-side imbalance between the legs and pelvis are eased, the spine is freer to extend, and it becomes easier for breath and motion to transfer between the pelvis and lower spine.
Easing rotation between the arms, shoulder girdle and thorax helps the cervical and thoracic spine extend, which then makes it easier for breath and motion to transfer through and between the cervical and thoracic spine. And of course, with the easing of rotation and torsion between the upper and lower halves of the body, it becomes easier for the entire spine to flex and extend fully, and for breath and motion to transfer through it.
As the body’s inner diaphragms and fascial linings are freed to move within their bony container, it becomes easier to see the transfer of breath between these diaphragms and through the core. And of course, the freer the core is to move independently from its bony container, the easier it is to see and to feel those places where the core remains adhered to the bony torso.
In these final three sessions, we focus on releasing any remaining adhesions that impede movement of the structural core, and on easing rotation between the inner core and its outer myofascial sleeve. Just as a tailor fits the lining of a suit to its outer layers, we attempt to fit the body’s inner core comfortably within its bony container, as well as to its outer myofascial sleeve. That ability to create balance between the body’s inner core and outer sleeve is the greatest challenge in these final sessions.
Achieving radial and vertical alignment of the body’s weight-bearing segments supports physical balance and long-term stability. Supporting the transfer of breath and movement through the inner core supports our ability to build an energetic charge and dissipate emotional strain locked within the body.
And, after several decades of teaching and practicing Structural Integration, I’ve observed that easing rotation and torsion between the body’s inner core and outer sleeve also supports greater congruence between one’s beliefs and actions!