'Rolfing' a new kind of massage therapy

'Rolfing' a new kind of massage therapy

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Christie Jauch gets massages regularly.  She recently decided to try new therapy called "rolfing," for the first time.

Rolfing is a registered trade marked practice where a specially certified rolfer adjusts the connective tissue to realign the entire body.    

Lu Mueller-Kaul earned her certification 5 years ago.  She says, "As a rolfer, I can look at a person and I can say, okay in your case, you're pulling the shoulders too far back.  You're actually over compensating. You're making your posture worse than it should be, and I want to loosen up the areas between the shoulder blades. I want to make it more possible for you to straighten your spine from within."

Unlike regularly message therapy, rolfers typically start their patients lying on their sides.  

"We do a lot of work in different positions," says Mueller-Kaul.  "With lying on the side, I have a different way of working around the shoulder blade, working in these areas where we can actually get under the shoulder blade from under the armpit, where we can just work out these limitations and range of motions."

Jauch is a college student and used to cheer for the University of Central Florida.  Now, she plays soccer for her sorority.
"She feels pretty good, and what I noticed from her overall structure, is she's well aligned, says Mueller-Kaul, who did notice a few tense spots.

"Through injury, repetitive motion through small inflammations, through micro tears you get different structures that are kind of stuck together.," she says.  "You get one muscle then layer of connective tissue and another layer of connective tissue and another muscle and through these processes they're kind of glued together so you move the one muscle and you drag the other one along with it."

With her hands, Mueller-Kaul applies pressure, using her own body weight and makes an adjustment.

"It's not like a chiropractor adjustment.  It's much more. I'm moving the tissue next to the vertebrae to give more freedom of motion."

She works a lot with athletes and people who suffer from chronic pain.  Much of her concentration centers on the spine.  Traditionally, clients will come in for a rolfing session once a week for 10 weeks, with each session concentrating on a different region of the body.

"At first, it was a little tense and rough.  As the session went on, I got more relaxed. It got easier," said Jauch.  "I could almost feel the tissues moving, so it's kind of cool."

We asked if she would do it again, to which she replied, "I think it's expensive. but definitely worth it.
A full session is $125, but Jauch sees the potential for the long-term benefit.

"I feel like, during a massage, I would feel better, but I feel like this would be better after it.  It would benefit me more.  

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