For a long time, the fascia was viewed as mere “packaging” for our muscles, bones and organs. Today, its significance is recognised by science and it has become an exciting new field for research.
The fascia includes all joint and organ capsules, aponeuroses, muscular septa, ligaments, tendons and flat connective tissues such as the plantar fascia of the sole of the foot. The fascial web extends to the entire body, connecting all parts of the body with one another. This highly adaptive tissue creates a "tensile web" that holds the body upright in gravity. The fascia reacts to loads and demands it is being subjected to, and thus to the quality and direction of movement. A healthy fascia adapts to different forms of stress and strain, and forms a continuous and cohesive tissue.
In order to achieve smooth and effortless muscular slide as well as an optimal range of joint movement, the fascia must be well “hydrated” and present high elasticity. Lack of movement leads to a form of “matting”. Poor posture, relieving postures or excessive strain lead to tenseness and even to microtears. The fascia loses elasticity and suppleness, its dynamic supporting and tensile force is reduced. Structural Integration fosters and supports the fascial web’s self-regulation, allowing it to regain tonicity and elasticity.
«Plastination Project» – © FasciaResearchSociety.org
Further information on research
In recent years, clinical research has made great progress in better understanding the fascia and its significance for human health. More information on fascia-related research can be found on the following websites:
Since 2007, roughly 30 years after Dr Ida P. Rolf’s death, fascia researchers have been meeting with therapists and physicians every two years at an international congress.
The Ida Pauline Rolf Research Foundation encourages and supports interdisciplinary, scientifically sound research.
Dr Guimberteau is a French hand surgeon. For the past few years, he has been filming surgical procedures with a high-resolution camera. “Strolling under the Skin” was his first film.