Dr. Ida P. Rolf
Dr. Ida P. Rolf, a biochemist and Rockefeller University fellow, founded the Rolf Institute in 1971 in Boulder, Colorado.
Driven to find solutions to her own health problems, Dr. Rolf spent many years studying and experimenting with different systems of healing and manipulation. Dr. Rolf posed this fundamental question: “What conditions must be fulfilled in order for the human body‐structure to be organized and integrated in gravity so that the whole person can function in the most optimal and economical way?”
Her life’s work was devoted to an investigation into the conditions that must be met for the person, as a whole, to function optimally. This investigation led to a system of soft tissue manipulation and movement education designed to organize the whole body in gravity. She discovered that she could achieve remarkable changes in posture and structure by manipulating the body’s myofascial system. Dr. Rolf eventually named this system Structural Integration and later it was nicknamed “Rolfing” by clients and practitioners.
In order to pass along her work to others, and to make the education process accessible, she developed an expedient series of ten sessions which came to be known as the Ten‐Series.
This is the gospel of Rolfing: When the body gets working appropriately, the force of gravity can flow through. Then, spontaneously, the body heals itself.
Ida Rolf photos courtesy of David Kirk-Campbell.