My first Rolfing session did not kill me
I’ll admit I was plenty worried heading into my first Rolfing session. No great mystery why.
The potential pain.
People had told me that it was going to make a deep tissue massage seem like child’s play.
After session No. 1 with Russ Pfeiffer, I can say that was entirely untrue, although there were a few moments that were excruciating.
Here’s the thing, though. I could tell that, while what Russ was doing hurt, it wasn’t going to hurt me. I wasn’t in any danger. And so I let him continue.
It reminded me of the humanity test in Dune, when Paul Atreides is tested by the Bene Gesserit Reverend Mother Gaius Mohiam and her Gom Jabbar. I guess it proved I may be human, after all.
I suspect part of the reason I lived to tell my tale is that Russ is such a pro. (If you want to learn more, here’s an article on him from the May 2011 LA Yoga.) But it isn’t the time on the table I want to discuss. After all, that’s pretty much akin to writing about my practice, and what worth is there saying that he pushed here and pulled there?
We hardly spent any time on the table, anyway. What seemed to be the focus was my walk, how I carried myself. While his observations and suggestions may be somewhat specific to me, they seem a bit universal and a bit familiar.
It’s about the play of opposites, much like asana, the sthria and sukham, movements in different but somehow complementary directions.
And bandhas. Bandhas are involved, too.
Essentially, my upper body should be light, my lower body — legs and feet — should be heavy. The shoulders are independent of the spine. The body, not just the eyes, should be aware of my surroundings.
One thing positive is that Russ suggested all the yoga has set me up for some success with his work. I’m anxious to see. Next appointment: Thursday.
Until then, I’ll be doing a lot of weird walking.
Posted by Steve