From the Author

Structural Integration and Energy Medicine: A Handbook of Advanced Bodywork, connects the dots to offer the world of bodywork evidence-based emerging science that now supports the theories of Dr. Ida P. Rolf and verifies the existence of what has been known for millennia as “Qi.” The author explores the relationship between the energetics of the body and its alignment, describing how gravity can become a beneficial force when the body is properly aligned. 

This illustrated guide details each of the ten sessions of the Structural Integration series, explaining what the client can expect in each session and how to maximize their benefits. Green explores how rotation patterns in the body contribute to pain, and how correcting these patterns may eliminate the need for hip and knee replacements. When the body’s structure is optimally aligned, pain, inflammation, and degeneration may be reduced. Likewise, the flow of energy in the body and mental clarity may become enhanced. 

This resource guide is designed to accompany both practitioner and client through the Structural Integration series. It includes the psycho-emotional Hellerwork “themes,” movement and awareness exercises, support tools for self-care, maintenance between sessions, and how to avoid putting stress and strain back into the body. 

Structural Integration and Energy Medicine has forty illustrations, including anatomical diagrams to assist the reader in understanding the sessions and their accompanying movement and awareness exercises. The book includes headers, subtitles, illustrative client stories and accounts of key moments in the author’s professional life.

Jean Louise Green—seeker and connector of dots:

I’ve been a lifelong seeker and connector of dots. I am so grateful to have found Structural Integration! It is one of my top three life experiences. Not only does it give me a comfortable body to live in, it has also provided me with a life-long profession of meaningful connection with people. I hear words like, “I almost feel reborn!” “I am in awe!” “Now I can feel these muscles moving again!” Yes, this is my privilege, and these gratitudes occur daily on Structural Integration tables around the world.

I have studied this form of bodywork in its depth and subtlety through my work with hundreds of clients. Structural Integration and Energy Medicine: A Handbook of Advanced Bodywork is the culmination of my years of experience as practitioner and recipient of Structural Integration. The book is laced with stories of people I have worked with and how their bodies and lives have changed as a result. It is also filled with the wisdom of many master teachers, especially Dr. Ida P. Rolf. Her words are quoted throughout the book and at the beginning of each session.

Structural Integration is done in a series of ten sessions, and there is only so much time in each session time to do the physical work with the client and educate them about the process itself. So I rose to the call to create this practical Structural Integration handbook. I hope that it captures the brilliance of Dr. Rolf’s ideas, and presents the nuts and bolts of the recipe of her work in a way that becomes a guide for both clients and practitioners. I look forward to the inspired conversations I will have with people as they read this book.

I am also excited to share my experience of the Line with other practitioners. Dr. Rolf said that gravity could be a beneficial force. What exactly did she mean by that? I have quested deeply around those words. As practitioners read this book, I challenge them to experience their Line in an energetic way that perhaps they have not done before.    

An owner’s manual:

I liken this book to an owner’s manual for the human body. We live within a gravitational field and our body’s relationship to that field matters! During my training to become a practitioner, I had one of those life-changing Rolfing/SI experiences.

After a session with my practitioner where core-level structures in my body were released, I felt the support of the Earth in an entirely new way. My anterior pelvis and excessive arch in my lower back were restored to their natural positions as my pelvis became horizontal. My body was then able to drop into the support of the Earth; a sense of lift moved up through me. No longer was I struggling against gravity; instead, I skipped for joy! Now I could sit, stand, kneel and run comfortably again. This experience of the power of alignment in an organized body is one of the many wonderful possibilities of Structural Integration.

When biophysicist James Oschman first read my manuscript, he commented, “I really like what I am reading. You have captured the essence of Rolfing/SI in a clear way that I have not seen before. I have needed this book for a long time. It is delicious!” In his foreword to the book, he wrote, “An awareness of the concepts presented in this book can benefit anyone, and can also enhance the work of all health care practitioners. The reason for such a bold claim is simple: all healing methodologies and practices affect anatomical balance, whether or not one realizes or intends it. The mechanism: all of the systems in the body are interconnected. Bringing balance to any one system affects all of the others.”

Doctor Oschman concluded that my book would be an excellent preparation for the journey of Structural Integration. “It is valuable to understand the goals of each session, to know how to prepare yourself for the next one, and to have suggestions about how best to incorporate the results between sessions. The information Jean Louise Green has organized in this book is priceless.”

This book is designed specifically for practitioners and clients of Structural Integration/Rolfing. It will also be helpful to a wide range of bodywork professionals such as Myofascial Release Therapists, Acupuncturists, Chiropractors, Craniosacral Therapists, Certified Massage Therapists, Reflexologists, and Yoga and Pilates instructors.

Readers will be introduced to body alignment techniques through the teachings of Dr. Rolf, the amazing properties of connective tissue, the structural and energetic aspects of the Rolf Line, and an advanced understanding of the effect of the gravitational pull on the body.

Thorough customized bodywork can dramatically improve the efficiency of the body, decreasing or eliminating chronic pain. The significance of optimal body alignment cannot be overstated. The general public may find answers for health challenges through this systematic, yet personalized, hands-on approach to healing.

An educational handbook for practitioners, clients and readers:

Readers are introduced to the principles of Structural Integration, its history and founder. Difficult concepts, such as the ‘Line,’ rotation patterns, and the torus are explained clearly and simply, along with the emerging science that supports the work. Practitioners will expand their knowledge and learn to articulate these concepts for their clients.

Each session is detailed regarding what to expect in each session and what can be done to maximize and retain benefits. Along with many helpful illustrations, the session chapters include the goals of each session and the areas of the body to be addressed. The Hellerwork ‘themes’ regarding the psycho-emotional aspects of the work are included along with movement and awareness exercises. Recommendations for self-care and instructions to access the Rolf Line for enhancing energy flow are also featured in each session chapter.

Movement exercises designed to help clients experience the energetic benefits of their Line are highlighted. Practitioners may even expand their own experience of the Line. This is a resource guide that practitioners can offer to their clients who wish to delve into the multi-faceted aspects of Structural Integration.

Part I includes an introduction to Dr. Ida P. Rolf, founder of Structural Integration, along with detailed information on connective tissue and the emerging science around it. In Part II, the ten sessions are detailed. Part III includes support tools like the role of nutrition, electromagnetic healing devices, meditation and the Five Tibetan Rites for new habits and upgrades.

This book explains how rotation patterns in the connective tissues can pull bones out of alignment, contribute to pain as well as degeneration of joints and discs, and stress in the nervous system. Structural Integration helps release these rotations in both core and extremities, creating more organization in the body’s structure and function. Clients are instructed in new habits to avoid putting stress and strain back into their body, including optimal body mechanics for moving, sitting and standing.

Because of pioneers like Dr. Rolf and the many excellent teachers and practitioners who have developed this path of Structural Integration, the general public is now discovering what is possible through complementary healing arts practices. It is my privilege to share this contribution of deep body wisdom with people of the world.