Wednesday, June 7, 2017

The Clinic For Funny Walks

"I walk funny.  I just walk... funny. I went to the doctor and he gave me muscle relaxers."

This was actually spoken in my office.

And again, recently:

"Some of my friends make fun of me and ask, 'Why do you walk so stiff?' I can't help it, that's just the way I walk!"

Well, you've come to the right place. My job is to fix those funny walks. But to understand this whole situation better, let's unpack those special gaits.

Question #1: Why do I walk funny?

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Hey You, Special People: 5 Qualities My Rolfing Clients Have

Japanese Acrobats/ wikimedia commons

What kind of people come for Rolfing?

The list is long: judges, computer programmers, nurses, ballet dancers, merchant marines, architects, bassoonists, lawyers, dentists, stock traders, fashion designers, cooks, bank tellers, pilots, surgeons, dog-walkers, painters, stay-at-home mothers, biologists, CEO's, psychotherapists, real estate agents, acrobats, poets, some busking street musicians on one hand, then a number of artists who can boast their Oscars, Grammys, Emmys. I've even had Republicans in my practice. And this list can go on.

But still... I can't say that "everyone" should come for Rolfing. Because despite their wild diversity, all my clients have these five qualities in common. 

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Artists! Get Rolfing! Here!

This is the definition of sympathy. Aside from my Rolfing practice, I'm also a cellist and writer. To be honest, I'm a teeny bit more passionate about creative endeavors than I am about fixing bodies. Inevitably, I combine the two.

Artists, musicians, dancers, singers, and actors really need Rolfing. I know this very well myself. The reasons are obvious: Rolfing improves how the body moves. Tension is reduced drastically. The body is free to express, not tied up fighting excess tension. Yet, sadly, exactly these creative people rarely earn enough to afford Rolfing.

I've heard this from too many artists: "I saved up all year for a Rolfing session!" 

It pains me. Rolfing is a series of sessions. But these creative people, they can only come once. Or three times. And then the following year when they return, they have to start from the beginning again. So, in essence, the people who can't afford a Rolfing 10-session series eventually pay more for the complete series, if they ever get through one. 

It's ridiculous. But I refuse to contribute to the axiom, "It's expensive to be poor."

That's why I bend over backwards to offer performing artists – and also teachers, non-profit employees, and caretakers – all sorts of reduced rates and payment plans. I want artists to get through a Rolfing series in the same time that a banker, lawyer, or engineer does.

I need your help, though. Rolfing is expensive because we Rolfers take much more time per client and have limited hours in a week. In addition, the Rolfing process is finite, not open-ended; after a Rolfing series, the body can self-heal for a long time. The more full-paying clients I have, the better I can afford to offer serve the creative community. So I greatly appreciate it if you can spread the word and refer my practice to your friends and family! Thank you for helping the cycle flow.

Audrey Mei, Certified Advanced Rolfer 

Find more information at Feel free to contact me. My Rolfing office is located at 220 Bush Street #1084 in San Francisco, CA 94104.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Emotional Complexity, Longevity, and Your Posture

"It's amazing, I can see the silver lining!"

"Things that used to bother me just don't anymore."

"You know that movie The Matrix? I'm like that guy, dodging all the bullets, but miraculously I'm dodging stress at work. I have so much more energy at the end of the day. I feel so much better."

I hear it often from my clients who are going through their Rolfing series. It's similar to what I felt when I received my first Rolfing 10-session series back in the 90s: At the time, I was in a double-degree program studying cello and biopsychology in Boston, and as if that weren't enough, I was pushing myself through pre-med, preparing for the MCAT, and applying for a Fulbright Grant at the same time. 

Needless to say, the stress was high. A C+ on an exam, an audition that I didn't have time to practice for, a glare from the conductor when I got to orchestra rehearsal late... Life was full of little awful events that made me feel horrible.

But how bad would I feel, and how long would it bother me? Those changed while I was getting my Rolfing series. I remember telling my Rolfer, Aline Newton, "It feels like stress used to stick to me like rain on a cotton jacket. Negative thoughts would hang around for days or weeks. But now it feels like the stress literally slides away. It rolls off me like water." In addition, I told her: "I can see how things are never all bad." 

And unbeknownst to me, I had gained a powerful tool for staying young and healthy, longer. In my 20s, I didn't care, but being "greater" than 40 now (ahem), this is worth gold.

Friday, April 14, 2017

Study: Rolfing Improves Neck Pain, Range Of Motion

This is from a 2009 article from Massage Magazine. I've been practicing for over 17 years at this point and can say that increased range of motion (ROM) from Rolfing applies to much more than just the neck, as many of my clients move more gracefully and more efficiently than before the 10-session series. "I use a lot less energy to walk, so I'm not exhausted by the end of the day" is a common thing I hear in my office.
And the article...
"Completing 10 sessions of Rolfing® structural integration (RSI) was shown to decrease pain and improve range of motion among people who sought treatment for complaints of neck pain and limited neck motion.
The study, “Rolfing structural integration treatment of cervical spine dysfunction,” was retrospective research that involved a total of 31 patients, six males and 25 females, ages 22 to 66, with a median age of 52 years.