What is Structural Medicine?
Structural Medicine is an advanced form of bodywork that uses myofascial release, postural analysis and movement re-education to restore proper alignment and function to a client’s body. It is often used to treat injuries, chronic pain, and movement dysfunctions.
This approach bridges well-established and evidence-based evaluation tools found in mainstream medicine with the latest scientific developments in alternative treatment therapies.
Distinctive to the field of structural integration, Structural Medicine uses objective evaluations, customized treatment and a collaborative team approach to address your unique health issues. Practitioners are able to directly address specific pathologies and pain, making new ranges of motion available, increasing kinesthetic awareness, and enabling clients to move through life with ease.
What is myofascia?
Myofascia is a connective tissue network that surrounds our muscles, bones, blood vessels, nerves and organs. This web provides support and flexibility through our entire body. When this network maintains its elastic nature, it glides and stretches as we move. Alternatively, when our myofascial network becomes shortened, it can impair posture and overall movement function. This results in poor postural habits, chronic pain, injury and reduced range of motion, as well as pathologies such as carpal tunnel, plantar fasciitis, headaches, back pain and thoracic outlet syndrome.
Myofascial Length Testing™
Unique to Structural Medicine is a sophisticated diagnostic procedure, Myofascial Length Testing™ (MFLT™). MFLT™ is essential for treatment of complex interrelated traumas. The objective findings empower the practitioner to formulate a customized plan for treatment of individual pathologies and provieds objective pre-and post-treatment measurements of progress.
Structural Medicine involves extensive evaluation of postural aligmnemt and movement, in order to balance the myofascial tone, length and strength across all the major joints of the body. Through myofascial reorganization, the Structural Medicine process moves the body toward a more efficient orientation and function in gravity.
Body Awareness & Pain Reduction
Through verbal dialogue and movement re-education, Structural Medicine helps uncover attitudes and unconscious beliefs that contribute to our limited postural integrity and efficient movement dynamics. By means of an integrative process of postural evalation, MFLT™, manual therapy, dialogue, movement and neuro-muscular re-education, a newfound empowered awareness develops to re-shape posture, movement patterns, and sense of self. This often results in the alleviation or reduction of pain associated with pathology.
Suzy Cornell, Structural Medicine Practitioner Suzy underwent a rigorous 4-year training of over 2,500 hours to develop a thorough understanding of anatomy, pathology, postural analysis, neuro-muscular reeducation and movement. She combines this with over twenty years of experience in Adult Wellness to provide a complete system of healing for her clients.
What is a treatment like? Sessions take two hours, usually beginning with some dialogue on how you, the client, are doing, and what the theme of the session treatment is. Then we will usually do some movement, such as walking or reaching, to look at movement patterns. After that I will take some measurements using the MFLT method described above. From the dialogue, movement, and MFLT, I will develop a plan for the session, and begin the hands on treatment, working to re-organize fascial structures into more efficient allignment and movement patterns.
At the end of the session we re-test, using MFLT, and do some movement again to integrate awareness of new movement patterns.
Then usually some form of simple homework exercise is given to practice that will help to re-educate the body into these new movement patterns, or to develop an awareness of a postural habit or movement, and the new one now available to you.
Then you’re off, relaxed, refreshed, and calm…. 🙂
Founders Structural Medicine is based on the life work of Donna Bajelis (Physical Therapist & Hellerworker) and biochemist Dr. Ida P. Rolf (founder of Rolfing). Dr. Rolf found she could achieve positive change in people’s posture and function through manipulation of connective tissue. Using these principles, Donna Bajelis contributed her extensive study of physical therapy & orthopedic medicine to develop a system of testing (MFLT™) so that each client’s unique fascial structure can be evaluated and treated.