Do you ever wake up feeling stiff, creaky, and just plain old? Have you noticed how a cat, when is wakes from a cat nap, will arch the back and stretch the front legs? This type of stretching helps to loosen the body, increase range of motion, and ‘de-fuzz’ the muscle fibers.
‘Fuzz’ is a term I learned from Paul Wirth, a Rolfer in Salt Lake City. This fuzzy stuff accumulates naturally, daily in the body and, if it’s not kept in check, limits movement more and more over time, until “our body is literally solidifying; we’re reducing our range of motion in individual areas of our body and over our entire body in general.”
Working with such tissue is one way that Rolfing works to, as Gil says, “introduce movement so that the new cycle is a little more movement, and a little more movement, and a little more movement—instead of a little less movement, and a little less movement, and a little less movement.” Widening the arc of possibility, one movement at a time.
Rolfer Gil Hedley demonstrates how the ‘fuzz’ impacts the body. Warning: this video contains images of human cadavers.
“Fascia is the organ of posture. Nobody ever says this; all the talk is about muscles. Yet this is a very important concept, and because this is so important, we as Rolfers must understand both the anatomy and physiology, but especially the anatomy of fascia. The body is a web of fascia. A spiderweb is in a plane. This web is in a sphere. We can trace the lines of that web to get an understanding of how what we see in a body works.”
— Ida P. Rolf, Ph.D.