Chai with Bill Kamer – Certified Advanced Rolfer
04 Jul 17
What is Rolfing?
The therapeutic technique is named after an American biochemist, Dr Ida P. Rolf. She identified the importance of connective tissue in our body and how it can be treated to rid people of chronic aches and pains. Rolfing is a technique of applying sustained pressure to decompress tissue allowing muscles to have the correct span so the bones can articulate properly, thus allowing peoples’ bodies the correct alignment so their body parts are set for optimal and pain-free mobility. Rolfing basically releases connective tissue that traps or locks body parts, preventing people from having normal mobility.
What sort of patients do you generally care for?
These are usually people with aches and pains caused by prior injuries such as sprains and fractures; chronic overuse of body parts such as carpal tunnel syndrome; bad back due to exertions and bad posture, neck pain due to bad workplace ergonomics and straining. Then there are others who come to rid their bodies of stiffness that prevent them from functioning optimally, such as dancers, golfers, etc.
How does it differ from massage or chiropractic manipulation?
Massage simply involves squeezing muscles using specific stroking movements. Chiropractic manipulations focus on joint alignments. Rolfing, in contrast, involves sustained firm pressure on the involved connective tissue till it releases the tightness. It can be locked muscle, scar tissue or contracted muscle. The patients usually feel the tissues letting go after a successful session.
How does one train for it?
There is a Rolf Institute in Boulder CO. The training requiresan undergraduate degree. This can be in any field. Or, the student can be in business for themselves for at least 4 years. They must submit a master’s quality thesis of at least 20 pages showing an in depth understanding of fascial anatomy, specifically, showing the relationship between muscles, bones and organs.
How long is the treatment?
Each session is 90 minutes. Often during the first few sessions it becomes obvious that the source of the pain is elsewhere in the body, necessitating additional sessions. This is so because connective tissue in one body part is connected to another - hence the name. For example, low back pain may be connected to an old ankle injury, or neck pain may come from an overused wrist, or stuck rib.
Do insurance companies cover Rolfing?
Fortunately, the answer is NO. The healing occurs faster and lasts longer when the client takes responsibility in their involvement in the unwinding and healing process.
How long have you been in practice, and where is your clinic?
I have been in practice for more than 20 years here in Phoenix. My clinic is at 7227 North 16th Street in Phoenix AZ 85020; on the east side of 16th Street, between Northern Ave. and Glendale Ave.
Do people have to make appointments?
Yes they do; they can reach me at 602-808-1448. I can usually workclients in within a day or two. I often work after hours or weekends to help patients get out of pain in emergency situations.