Research References

Rolfing® SI Research References - including Walking, Pain, Motion, and Balance

Preliminary clinical studies have been performed with small samples of patients with cerebral palsy, chronic musculoskeletal pain, impaired balance, and chronic fatigue syndrome. The outcomes of those studies suggest that Rolfing SI may have positive effects on walking, musculoskeletal pain, and associated limitations in joint motion, and on balance. Preliminary research on the underlying therapeutic mechanisms suggests improvements in movement coordination and efficiency, sensory processing, self-esteem, relaxation, and reductions in anxiety.



  1. Ball TM. Structural Integration-based fascial release efficacy in systematic lupus erythematosus (SLE): two case studies. Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies. 2011 April; 15(2): 217:25.
  2. H. Baur, H. Gatterer, B. Hotter, and M. Kopp, “Influence of structural integration and fascial fitness on body image and the perception of back pain.,” J. Phys. Ther. Sci., vol. 29, no. 6, pp. 1010–1013, Jun. 2017.
  3. Cottingham J., Porges SW, Richmond K. Shifts in pelvic inclination angle and parasympathetic tone produced by Rolfing soft tissue manipulation. Physical Therapy 68:1364-1370, 1988.
  4. Cottingham J, Porges SW, Lyon T. Effects of soft tissue mobilization (Rolfing pelvic lift) on parasympathetic tone in two age groups. J Amer Physical Therapy 1988a; 68(3): 352-56
  5. Cottingham J, Maitland J. Three-paradigm treatment model using soft tissue mobilization and guided movement-awareness techniques for patients with chronic low back pain: A case study. The Journal of Orthopedic & Sports Physical Therapy 26(3):155-167, Sept 1997.
  6. Deutsch JE, Judd P, Demassi I. Structural Integration applied to patients with a primary neurologic diagnosis: two case studies. Neurology Report 21(5):161-62, 1997.
  7. Deutsch JE, Derr LL, Judd P, et al. Treatment of chronic pain through the use of Structural Integration (Rolfing). Orthopaedic Physical Therapy Clinics of North America 9(3):411-425, 2000.
  8. Findley TW, Quigley K, Maney M, Chaudhry H, Agbaje I. Improvement in balance with Structural Integration (Rolfing): A controlled case series in persons with myofascial pain. American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, October 9, 2004, Phoenix Arizona. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 85(9):e34, Sep 2004.
  9. Findley T, Quigley K, Maney M, Chaudhry H, Agbaje I. Balance improvement with structural integration (Rolfing) in persons with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. In: T Findley, Schleip R, ed. Fascia: The Tensional Network of the Human Body. Munich: Elsevier GmbH, 2007a: 242-43.
  10. Hansen A, Price K, Feldman H. Myofascial Structural Integration: A Promising Complementary Therapy for Young Children with Spastic Cerebral Palsey. Journal of Evidence-Based Complementary & Alternative Medicine. 17(2):131-135, April 2012.
  11. Hansen AB, Price KS, Loi EC, Buysse CA, Jaramillo TM, Pico EL, Feldman HM.Gait Changes Following Myofascial Structural Integration (Rolfing) Observed in Two Children with Cerebral PalsyJournal of Evidence-Based Complementary & Alternative Medicine. 2014 Oct;19(4):297-300.
  12. Hunt V, Massey W. Electromyographic evaluation of Structural Integration techniques. Psychoenergetic Systems 2:199-210, 1977.
  13. Jacobson E, Meleger A, Bonato P, Wayne P, Langevin H, Kaptchuk T, Davis R. Structural Integration as an Adjunct to Outpatient Rehabilitation for Chronic Nonspecific Low Back Pain: A Randomized Pilot Clinical Trial. Journal of Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine. 2015:813418, 2015.
  14. Jacobson E. Structural Integration: an alternative method of manual therapy and sensorimotor education. J Altern Complment Med. 17(10):891-99, Oct 2011.
  15. Jacobson E. Structural Integration: origin and development. J Altern Complement Med. 17(9):775-80, Sep 2011.
  16. James H, Castaneda L, Miller ME, Findley T. Rolfing structural integration treatment of cervical spine dysfunction. J Bodywork Movement Therapy 2009 Jul;13(3):229-38
  17. Kerr H. Urethral stent displacement associated with deep massage. Western Medical Journal 96(12):57-58, 1997
  18. Loi, Elizabeth C., Buysse CA, Price KS, Jaramillo TM, Pico EL, Hansen AB and Feldman HM. Myofascial structural integration therapy on gross motor function and gait of young children with spastic cerebral palsy: a randomized trial. Frontiers in Pediatrics, Vol 3, Article 74. 2015.
  19. Perry J, Jones MH, Thomas L. Functional evaluation of Rolfing in cerebral palsy. Developmental Medicine and Child Neurology 23(6):717-729, 1981Medicine and Child Neurology 23(6):717-729, 1981.
  20. Potter C. Children with cerebral palsy. Physical Therapy Forum (Western Edition) June 18, 1986.
  21. Pratt TC. Psychological effects of structural integration. Psychological Reports 35(2):856, Oct 1974.
  22. Silverman J, Rappaport M, Hopkins HK, Ellman G, Hubbard R, Belleza T, Baldwin T, Griffin R, Kling R. Stress, stimulus intensity control, and the structural integration technique. Confinia Psychiatrica 16(3):201-19, 1973.
  23. Silverman J, Rappaport M, Hopkins HK, Ellman G, Hubbard R, Belleza T, Baldwin T, Griffin R, Kling R. Stress, stimulus intensity control, and the Structural Integration technique. Confinia Psychiatrica 1973; 16(201-19)
  24. Solit, M. A study in structural dynamics. Journal of the American Osteopathic Association 62(30-40), 1962
  25. Stall P, Teixeira MJ. Fibromyalgia syndrome treated with the structural integration Rolfing® method. Rev Dor. São Paulo, 15(4):248-52, Oct-Dec 2014.
  26. Stall P. Hosomi JK, Faelli CYP, Pai HJ, Teixeira MJ and Marchiori PE. Effects of structural integration Rolfing® method and acupuncture on fibromyalgia. Rev Dor. São Paulo, 2015 apr-jun;16(2):96-101
  27. Talty CM, DeMasi I, Deutsch JE. Structural integration applied to patients with chronic fatigue syndrome: a retrospective chart review. Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy 27(1):83, 1998.
  28. Weinberg RS, Hunt VV. Effects of structural integration on state-trait anxiety. Journal of Clinical Psychology 35(2), April 1979.

Research and Reviews Related to Rolfing SI

  1. Bouffard NA, Cutonreo KR, Badger GJ, White SL, Buttolph TR, Ehrlich HP, Stevens-Tuttle D and Langevin HM. Tissue Stretch Decreases Soluble  TGF-b1 and Type-1 Procollagen in Mouse Subcutaneous Connective Tissue: Evidence From Ex Vivo and In Vivo Models. J Cellular Physiology, DOI 10.1002/JCP, 389-395. 2007.
  2. Chaudhry HR, Schleip R, Ji Z, Bukiet B, Maney M, Findley TW. Three dimensional mathematical model for deformation of human fascia in manual therapy. Journal of American Osteopathic Association 108: 379-390, Aug 2008
  3. Chaudhry H, Huang C, Schleip R, Ji Z, Bukiet B, Findley T. Viscoelastic behavior of human fasciae under extension in manual therapy. Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies 11(2), Apr 2007.
  4. Langevin HM, Fox J, Koptiuch C, et al. Reduced thoracolumbar fascia shear strain in human chronic low back pain. BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 12:203, 2011.
  5. Langevin HM, Rizzo D, Fox J, et al. Dynamic morphometric characterization of local connective tissue network structure in humans using ultrasound. BMC Systems Biology 1:25, 2007.
  6. Langevin HM, Sherman K. Pathophysiological model for chronic low back pain integrating connective tissue and nervous system mechanisms. Medical Hypotheses 68:74-80, 2007.
  7. Langevin HM, Stevens-Tuttle D, Fox J, et al. Ultrasound evidence of altered lumbar connective tissue structure in human subjects with chronic low back pain. BMC Systems Biology 10:151, 2009.
  8. Leask A, Abraham DJ. TGF-beta signaling and the fibrotic response. FASEB J 187(7):816-27, 2004.
  9. Panjabi M. A hypothesis of chronic back pain: ligament subfailure injuries lead to muscle control dysfunction. European Spine Journal 15(5):668-76, 2006. BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 10:151, 2009.
  10. Porges SW. Vagal tone: A physiologic marker of stress vulnerability. Pediatrics 90(3):498-504, Sep 1992.
  11. Schleip R, Findley T, Chaitow L, Huijing P., Eds. Fascia: The Tensional Netowrk of the Human Body. Edinburgh, New York: Churchill Livingstone/Elsevire, 2012.
  12. Schleip R, Klingler W, Lehmann-Horn F. Active fascial contractility: Fascia may be able to contract in a smooth muscle-like manner and thereby influence musculoskeletal dynamics. Medical Hypotheses 65(2):273-277, 2005.
  13. Schleip R, Naylor IL, Ursu D, Melzer W, Zorn A, Wilke HJ, Lehmann-Horn F, Klingler W. Passive muscle stiffness may be influenced by active contractility of intramuscular connective tissue. Medical Hypotheses 66(1):66-71, 2006.
  14. Schleip, R Lehmann-Horn F, Klinger W. Letter to the editor concerning: "A hypothesis of chronic back pain: ligament subfailure injuries lead to muscle control dysfunction." (M. Panjabi). European Spine Journal, 2007.
  15. Schleip R, Zorn A, Lehmann-Horn F, Klinger W. Active fascial contractility: an in vitro mechanographic investigation. In Fascia research - basic science and implications for conventional and complementary health care. (TW Findley and R Schleip (eds) Munich: Elsevier Science, p. 82, 2007.
  16. Threlkeld AJ. The effects of manual therapy on connective tissue. Physical Therapy 72(12):893-902, 1992.
  17. Vleeming A, Pool-Goudzwaard AL, Stoeckart R, Van Wingerden JP, Snijders CJ. The posterior layer of the thoracolumbar fascia. Its function in load transfer from spine to legs. Spine 20(7):753-58, 1995.
  18. Weinberg RS, Hunt VV. Interrelationships between anxiety, motor behavior and electromyography. Journal of Motor Behavior 8(3) 219-224, 1976.