Rolfing and other manual therapies

Recommended Posts

Some of you might have read my other post inquiring about exercises appropriate for realigning and healing the body http://www.thetaobums.com/index.php?/topic/13807-need-a-gentle-exercise/. Ya Mu, you recommended some chinese manual therapy--I've dome some research on the various types out there, and have come up with a few that seem to suit my needs, namely Rolfing and joint manipulation. I found the most information on Rolfing, although the idea behind foot joint manipulation--that correcting imbalances in the feet works to correct the rest of the body--seems reasonable. This is the same idea as Rolfing, except the emphasis on Rolfing is correcting strain and weakness in the connective tissue and allowing gravity to do the work over a period of months.


Anyone out there have any experience with Rolfing? I've read some good things...also I just discovered Yin yoga and that seems like it may be exactly what I need. Yin yoga emphasizes working the connective tissue, as opposed to the Yang yogas that use muscles. I'm particularly on the lookout for a yin yoga routine that would work the entire body back into proper alignment, something I could do daily. I guess Tai Chi is yin yoga essentially. Input please.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I have done a version of Rolfing:




This and cranio sacral therapy rocks!


I wrote this an a different thread about pain:


Google mindfulness baseds stress reduction. It is an extreemly well reseached meditation program tought in hospitals++. It started as an atempt to reduce the pain of pasients with extreeme and chronic pain that had not found help in conventional medicine. The patients had an average of 8 years of other treatments with little effect. Within two months of mindfulness meditation the pain was reduced by arround 40-50% in addition to various other benefits such as a well researched and quite massive jump in happiness and immune function. Also the patients reported being able to cope with the pain that was left much, much better. Pain could still be there but not be perceived as much of a problem. Shinzen young has written a book about how that mechanism works and parts of it can be read on his webpage. The initial pain of life is inevitable but most of what we experience as problematic is the suffering we add to this because we resist and do not want it. Once we let go pain will not necesarilly be so bad. I have sat with horrible pains in my legs, almost unbearble at times, when I meditate and after ten to fifteen minutes I have often been able to just be present in the pain without resistance. Once I do that at least 90% or more of what I felt was a problem was gone but the pain is still there. It is just that it is more like a phenomen that I observe, there is pain but no one who suffers because of it kind of. this is not denial but the oposite. It comes from going head first into the pain and experiencing it fully without resistence. Then things just are and Suffering goes away but pain stays and we find that most of what we perceive as inevitable pain is optional suffering. Shinzen young goes into depth on the pain vs suffering distinction. In a way this is all at least budhism is about. Just be and suffering goes away. You will not be without pain (the buddha has lots of pain on old age) but suffering is the real problem and it can be let go of. Same thing with emotional pain. Even enlightened people experience emotional pain. But without attatchment they do not experience the added suffering that is most of the problem. In a way they experience more emotional pain than others because they are so present to whatever happens and is felt but it just does not bother them all that much. A lot of this is available at lower levels of meditation and mindfulness training as well.


I think when I first wrote this I did not emphasize enoguh that there is a huge reduction in pain just from relaxation of tension and from the release of various substances in the brain and body that reduce pain (40-50% as mentioned). The removal of the suffering aspect of pain and the pain that is there not being experienced as so much of a problem comes on top of that.


Circulation of energy, especially in the affected area, also significantly reduces pain. So any sort of qigong and yoga or energetic meditation can help somehwat just because of the circulation factor alone. In addition there are qigongs that are aimed specifically at reducing pain (don`t know any) and acupoints that can be amssaged that help in reducing pain. A point on the skin between your thumb and the next thinger releases a lot of pain reducing endorphins. I think it is called the hegu. trunk can tell you which acu points are good for pain. Also stimulating acupoints close to the affected area or acu points in different parts of the body but that influences the energetics of the painfull area can help quite a bit.


I sometimes wake up in the night with horrible pain in my back behind the solar plexus. What I do is press a point on the liver meridian (I think liver 1) on the foot. That stimulates the circulation/smooth energy flow ability of the liver and so removes a lot of the tension which disolves a great deal of the pain. Then I press the endorphin point on the hand as a pain killer. It takes me about 10 minutes to do this enough to reduce the pain to a level where I can fall asleep again. If I found a point that specifically increased circulation at the back behind the solar plexus or that had healing effects on the area (the liver point has a more whole body effect) I would ge even better results.


It will probably take you some time to get where you can get as much effect from acu points as I do as I am quite energy sensitive. But massaging each point 36 times etc. should give an effect.


Paul Griley and Sarah Powers are suposed to be good for Yin Yoga and Yin Yang Yoga. I realy like Sarah Powers book. She explains the effects of the different asana in terms of TCM which I find very helpfull. I think that book can help you a lot in learning how to tailor yoga to help work with various medical problems.


You could also consider brainwave entrainment. This technology puts the mind into meditative states and can be programmed to take you into states that realease loads of painkiller hormones etc. Many Bums can wouch for this technology being very powerfull in bringing you into deep meditation.

Edited by markern

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites