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The Muscular-Skeletal Benefits of using the Structural Integration Technique

for Body Therapists

Some body therapists have commented to me that they attempt to release the physical tensions in people but that they still keep re-occurring.  This brief article points out why that happens and what we can do to be much more effective.

It also lists the 4 things we need to know when doing the Structural Integration Method.

By Master Postural Integrator Lou Gross BSEE   
1-321-726-9083           louisryoshin@yahoo.com


The main benefits to re-lengthening and tension/pain removal, with the Structural Integration System’s knowledge is that you can get MORE body parts to loosen and be more flexible and it will all STAY looser, longer and more flexible for a much longer time,

When we work in localized areas, especially where we are approaching pain and tightness as the locally created conditions, or as local issues of muscle injury, we will miss some, and often a lot of, the causes of that tightness and pain, which are coming from the whole body’s system of interconnected bones and muscle tendons.  These interconnections are what hold, and then re-create, the many kinds of ongoing, developed tightness in that specific spot.  In many cases, the same feelings of tightness and/or pain return by a few days after the massage, acupuncture or other localized treatment that addresses neuro-muscular and/or energy conditions of the area.  This happens from what I call interconnecting shortness and misalignment shortness.  Some muscles just hold others tight, and some, in addition, force others to tighten themselves just to compensate for the original tightness.

This tightness is in the accumulated shortness of the body’s whole fascial system.  That whole body system has specific interlocking muscle-bone “groups” that go from one body part to another.  When we release these in an appropriate sequence, with the fascial manipulation (rather than massage) strokes, we correct local, interconnected and misalignment shortness. 

As we release the different areas, with our knowledge and a sensory feeling ability, we learn how the limbs affect the torso, and each other, how the torso affects the limbs, and even how the head affects the neck, back, chest, abdomen and some legs.  We learn how and why the neck affects the lower back. We get to see how the front and back of the body affect each other, and the sides, when they are tight (or bunched up short in the fascia) and as they go through the sequence of re-lengthening and loosening.  And we get to see how the top of the body affects the bottom and also, how the bottom affects the top.

Since it took a while to cause that amount of fascial shortening, the rather quick re-lengthening of all these parts makes the body much longer and flexible again rather quickly, and it stays that way for a long time again.  Even if there is effort, the better alignment and integrated movement of the neuro-muscular parts then allows us to move with less fascial shortening than we did before, and when we do bunch up, we can re-lengthen more easily by spreading the fascia of the parts we recently re-bunched up.  This can be done with the hands-on and/or with a stretching method to also spread the fascia in the overall body, interconnected way.

We can learn which interconnecting parts are holding the specific part we’re looking at, tight.  So we learn the interconnecting patterns and can thus get greater loosening in a short amount of time, more easily, and it will stay looser. 


So the idea is

1.)    To have a hands on technique that really spreads a lot of fascia relatively quickly and in  comfortable enough way that the recipient can keep releasing even for a multi-hour session, and feel both looser and more relaxed, as well as more nourished that when we started.

2.)    To understand the interlockings and apply the proper sequence of muscles and muscle areas to do.  These will be a general wide path for all bodies, and a specific variation or emphasis for each individual condition.

3.)    To understand what we’re aiming for in the length, looseness and re-alignment and re-organization.  We want to know what the body parts should look like and feel like after we have done which areas, to what depth.  And we want to know what the whole body will become, visually and movement-wise at each step, too.  And, we need a viewing technique to see what we’ve got.

4.)    To know what the person should be feeling at each step of the way, and when we find out what he or she is feeling and aware of, we know more about what to do next.  We also should know what will be changing in the person’s psychological and emotional behavior, too.


These are the points I cover in my Structural Integration classes, both in the introductory presentations, and also in the long term trainings.


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