I have many techniques that I integrate into my bodywork, pulled from my "toolbox" to reduce or eliminate many chronic pain conditions. I provide, Rolfing® Structural Integration in Anchorage, Alaska with many of the "tools" explained below.
Bio Mat I Include in all my services the Bio-Mat technology. It is an Amethyst Far Infrared Negative Ion mat that is placed on the bed/table, under the sheets. Many clients find that the Bio-Mat is very helpful in helping their wellbeing and pain or discomfort disappear. Amethyst stones are placed in horizontal rows within the mat.
The Amethyst Stone is often associated with peace. It is known to calm and protect the mind and soothes those who have engaged in rigorous mental activity. The Amethyst is known as "nature's tranquilizer".
Far Infrared Rays penetrate 6 inches into the human body. Therefore, these rays not only benefit the muscles on the surface of the body, but all the cells including blood vessels, lymph glands, and nerves in the deepest parts of our bodies. Because of this, these rays can warm our body from the inside out and stimulate most of our body's essential systems, including the immune system.
Benefits of Negative Ions
Purification of Blood:
Through research done by Dr. Tanaka in Japan, it was discovered that when negative ionization is introduced, the ions in calcium and natrium (salt) in the blood increases, and the blood is purified by increasing blood alkalinity.
Reviving the Cell:
When the amount of negative ion in the blood is increased, the function of a cell is activated. The electrical material exchange speeds up the cell function, and, as a result, nutrition is fully absorbed by the cell and waste material is eliminated. Metabolism is increased and the function of the cell is gradually revived.
As the amount of negative ion increases, the Gamma Globulin in the blood increases, resulting in blood rich protein and antibodies.
Control Function of the Autonomic Nervous System:
Dr. Tanaka found that negative ions control the balance in the autonomic nervous system between the insulin and adrenal functions. This provides strong resistance to diseases.
Structural integration is a scientifically validated system of restructuring the human body. It releases the body from lifelong patterns of tension and allows gravity to naturally realign them. This therapy is highly effective for improving posture, reducing or eliminating chronic pain, and releasing long-term emotional and mental stress.
A typical treatment (called a "10 series") consists of ten weekly, one-hour sessions, with each session focusing on a certain area of your body. These sessions are organized into a specific sequence to most effectively realign the entire body. When the treatment is complete, you will experience a 'new' body that has better posture and a more relaxed relationship to gravity. Your treatment plan will be collaborated to fit your health goals in your first visit.
Certified Rolfers™ often prescribe a sequence of ten sessions to "balance and optimize both the structure (shape) and function (movement) of the entire body," During a Rolfing Structural Integration session, a client generally lies down and is guided through specific movements. The Rolfer manipulates the fascia until it can operate in conjunction with the muscles in a "normal" fashion. This takes place over a course of ten 60 minute sessions, with a specific goal for each session, and an overall goal of cumulative results. Some clients find Rolfing painful, but Rolfing has evolved over the decades into a practice far more gentle than in its early origins. Your Rolfer will mostly likely begin your first session by asking you to take a walk around his or her studio. This protocol is simply so that your Rolfer can accurately observe your body's alignment and gait. After and in between sessions, try walking. Try running. Try cardiovascular exercise of any kind, you might be surprised how differently your body moves once it's been Rolfed.
After completing ten sessions with a Certified Rolfer™ a client can expect to experience a greater sense of allover freedom. Better posture, coordination, improved flexibility and improved movement can be expected. An enhanced understanding of how the body operates in harmony with gravity will be developed through the sessions. This new comprehension of the self can then be taken forward by the client and further experienced as a process of lifelong learning. In addition to improvements in the physical functioning of the body, Rolfing can promote an increase in one's emotional sense of well being.
Yes, photographs taken of clients' years after the Basic Ten Series show that changes are still present and structure often improved. Keep in mind, however, as life changes, bodies change in response. Any injuries, accidents, lengthy illnesses, and emotional stress may necessitate additional tune-up or advanced work.
It depends on the insurance policy and the circumstances. With a physician's prescription or a Chiropractor referral, many insurance companies cover myofascial release and physical manipulation type of bodywork which Rolfing, Structural Integration bodywork includes. For your convenience I can bill your insurance for you with your Dr. referral. You are responsible for your deductible and or copays at the time of service. This is no guarantee of coverage by your insurance company or health savings account. I encourage you to learn about your health insurance coverage.
Rolfing is a technique that works on the connective tissue, not only the surface structures, but also deeper structures that massage does not address. The goal and results of Rolfing is to balance the over-all structure of the body. Massage does not generally produce balance and alignment in the body. Rolfing is a complement to these disciplines.
Rolfing is named after Dr. Ida P. Rolf, who fifty years ago called her work structural integration. Dr. Rolf devoted her energy to creating a holistic system of soft tissue manipulation and movement education that organized the whole body in gravity. She discovered that she could achieve remarkable changes in posture and structure by manipulating the body's myofascial system. Rolfing is the nickname that many clients gave this work.
So What is Flotation Therapy / Sensory Deprivation / REST?
Flotation Therapy is essentially a way of achieving deep relaxation by spending an hour or more lying quietly in darkness, suspended in a warm solution of Epsom salt. Float tanks are also known as isolation tanks, sensory deprivation tanks & REST (Restricted Environmental Stimulation Therapy) chambers.
The Float Tank has a wide variety of uses/applications, deep relaxation and it's benefits are just one of the reasons for floating.
- Stress reduction
- Anxiety relief
- Sports recovery
- Pain relief
- To promote relaxation
- Reduce headaches/migraines
- Increased circulation
- For more restful sleep
- To learn to meditate or improve your current meditation practice
- Pregnancy support
The concept of Flotation Therapy is based on the theory that up to 90% of the brains normal workload is estimated to be caused by the effects of routine environmental stimulation (gravity, temperature, touch, light, sound). We are constantly bombarded with external stimulation as well as the incessant everyday background 'noises' & distractions that we may not even realize our minds are busily processing.
Floating in the tank, your senses are released from all these distractions, your body is weightless & you become a mind floating in space, enabling your body & mind to reach deep levels of relaxation/meditation that would normally take years of practice to achieve. The tank creates an environment where you can achieve pure sensory relaxation.
The weightlessness combined with the benefits of epsom salts also creates an ideal environment for injury recovery as well as providing relief from muscular pain & tension.
Freed from external stimulation, your body can achieve a state of deep relaxation that is even more beneficial than sleep. Even when sleeping – your mind is receiving signals from those parts of the body that are touching the bed & covers, temperature on skin, sounds & gravity.
Epsom Salts are great for your skin, hair, nails, and act as an exfoliate. They aid in joint pain, ease stress, and naturally relax the body. 800 pounds of epsom salts help prevent inflammation in your joints and muscles and treat sprains, strains or sore muscles.
800 pounds of epsom salt in 180 gallons of water creates a 30% salt solution, enabling the you to float effortlessly atop the water. This creates a deeply relaxing anti-gravity environment, as all weight and tension can be dropped; it's even safe to fall asleep. There are no pressure points on the body in this state, which can provide up to 100% pain relief. The spine naturally elongates and straightens, and the body undergoes the same regeneration process that transpires during sleep.
An hour of zero gravity and zero distractions will decrease the production of cortisone, a stress hormone, leaving us feeling refreshed and serene after the float. The brain enters the theta brain-wave state, associated with deep sleep and dreaming. As all external sources of distraction are removed, floating provides an extreme form of rest. The skin temperature water feels like floating on a cloud or in outer space.
Before you float you will be shown through & given a thorough explanation of how to operate everything & what you need to do to make your experience more comfortable.
First, you will need to go to the toilet & have a shower, washing hair and skin to remove excess oils. (avoid using conditioner before you float, only after you float) Then put earplugs in (optional) to help with noise reduction and keep salt water out of your ears. Now you are ready to step into the tank! You do not need to wear anything – however if you are not comfortable with this, you can wear underwear or bathers. The tank is in a room close to a shower and toilet. It has a door that can be locked from the inside so you are in complete privacy.
Once you step into the tank, you sit down & pull the door close or leave open to your comfort level.. Then you check the ceiling for any condensation – if there is condensation then you just wipe it down with the cloth provided to avoid it dripping in your eyes.
Once ready, you lie back & get comfortable. There is a neck pillow available for those who may find it difficult to relax their neck.
When your session is finished, you take your time, wipe off as much solution as you can while standing in the tank, then have a shower to wash off all the salt.
You can bring your own music or sounds along after your first float session – we just recommend that they are 'relaxing', without any heavy bass. We have guided meditations, subliminal calming sounds, ocean sounds, riverbank sounds & more to choose from. You may even want to use the tank for learning & bring along a language CD or study notes on CD – it's up to you.
Once you have quickly but thoroughly showered you come back out into our waiting area where you are welcome to relax , have a drink of water / herbal tea & enjoy the feeling before rushing back out into the world.
For those who find it ultra difficult to switch off & relax, we suggest a bodywork session before your float to help you unwind. For others, a bodywork session after a float may be more beneficial to help relieve even more tension and stress.
Float tanks are not a new phenomenon, in fact John C. Lilly, a medical practitioner and neuro-psychiatrist first developed flotation tanks in the 1950's. While training in psychoanalysis at the US National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), Lilly commenced experiments with sensory deprivation, researching the origin of the brains energy sources. One hypothesis argued that if all stimuli are cut off to the brain then the brain would go to sleep. Lilly decided to test this hypothesis by creating an environment which totally isolated an individual from external stimulation. From here, he studied the origin of consciousness and its relation to the brain.
Through his research into the effects of sensory deprivation on consciousness & the brain, John Lilly also found many therapeutic benefits of floating & sensory deprivation & this instigated much more research to be carried out both in North America & Europe. Namely, Peter Suedfeld and Roderick Borrie of the University of British Columbia began experimenting on the therapeutic benefits of flotation tank usage in the late 1970s. They named their technique "Restricted Environmental Stimulation Therapy" (REST).
People involved in these early experiments discovered they enjoyed the experience & that the relaxed state assisted with healing a variety of conditions including stress, anxiety, pain, swelling, insomnia. As a result of this enjoyment & benefit – float tanks were produced for commercial use & float centers started opening in several countries during the 1980s & continued to grow in popularity. Now, there are hundreds of float centers in dozens of countries all over the world.
If you're interested in how to achieve the most during your first float, check out these ten tips:
- Make sure a towel is easily accessible from within the tank because you will get salt in your eyes. There is nothing worse than scratching an annoying itch on your face only to get burning salt water in your eyes.
- Do not drink any caffeine before your float and try to use the bathroom before using a float tank. You do not want a full bladder ripping you away from "the zone," so make sure to go in empty.
- Do not think about time. Worrying your session is about to end or wondering how long you've been in only subtracts from the experience.
- Focus on breathing. Just like meditation, focusing on breathing and letting go...it really helped me relax.
- Floating for the first time will not be anything like you can imagine. That's okay, because it's impossible to go in with no expectations. Just remember, one thing you can expect for sure is that you will leave the tank feeling relaxed.
- Use waterproof Band Aids to cover cuts. Ever heard the idiom "to rub salt in a wound?" Because of the salt in the tank, forgetting to cover cuts brings that idiom to life in a float tank. Also avoid shaving prior to a float session, it can cause stinging and take away from the full relaxation experience.
- Try floating both with and without the foam pillow. I prefer not using the pillow but others find neck support helps relaxation.
- Wearing ear plugs enhances the sound deprivation and prevents getting swimmer's ear afterwards.
Trigger Point Therapy
Trigger Point Therapy is a style of bodywork that focuses on stimulating and releasing "trigger points" in your body. Trigger points are tender areas of tension similar to acupressure points, except they occur in the belly of the muscle tissue rather than along the energy pathways of the body. These 'knots' are built up throughout a person's life due to physical, mental, and/or emotional stress. During a session, focused pressure is applied through a variety of techniques in order to release your trigger points. This process can be quite painful at times, yet the effects are lasting and profoundly transformative.
SourcePoint Therapy is a simple non-invasive energetic approach to healing intended to support and enhance whatever modality you are using as a practitioner or receiving as a client. SourcePoint Therapy works with points in the human energy field that connect the physical body directly to the universal blueprint of health that contains the information of order, balance, harmony and flow necessary to sustain life. SourcePoint Therapy teaches and uses a body scanning technique that locates energetic blockages in the body that obstruct the information of order, balance, harmony, and flow inherent in the universal energy from manifesting in the physical body. SourcePoint Therapy has profound effects on the healing process as it reconnects the body and it's energy fields to the fundamental information of health.
Who can benefit from SourcePoint Therapy training? Bodyworkers (Massage Therapists, Cranial-Sacral Therapists, Rolfer's, etc.), Acupuncturists, Medical Doctors, Polarity Therapists, Physical Therapists, Nurses, Psychotherapists and in general anyone interested in maintaining their own health, or that of family and friends, through simple healing methods.
Reiki is a Japanese form of energy healing that cleanses and balances the energy patterns in the body. As a result, the body's natural self-healing mechanisms strengthen, helping to establish optimum mental, emotional, and physical health. During a session, I work in energetic connection with you in order to remove blockages, detoxify your energy system, and restore your vital life force energy. The Reiki technique utilizes a gentle laying on of hands to conduct the necessary energy force between us. The benefits of Reiki range from the release of habitual mental/emotional stress to alleviating chronic pain.
Acupressure is a form of bodywork similar to acupuncture, with the aim of stimulating specific points along the energy lines of the body to establish overall health and vitality by balancing your Qi (energy) flow. Unlike acupuncture however, with this modality I use my hands to apply pressure to the specific points rather than needling, producing similar therapeutic results.