Rolfing / scar / bone work –JR December 2017
I have been Vivien Skelton’s client for several years. I first sought her help for a chronic ankle injury affecting posture, balance and mobility. We started with the Rolfing 10 series but continued beyond it. Vivien added her scar and bone work to the mix, adapting her method in response to my specific and changing needs.
The physical benefits of Vivien’s work have been profound – as one might expect from a therapy that is by no means inexpensive and requires significant response and input from the client. With Rolfing, you don’t just lie there….. The real surprise (to me) has been the corresponding psychological benefit. As the body aligns, heals and strengthens, the mind follows suit. It is rather wonderful.
Rolfing is a not a superficial therapy and deep change – no matter how positive – can also be challenging. However, Vivien is a practitioner of extraordinary sensitivity with many skills at her command. Her hands are not just expert but also very safe. She has made a great difference to my life and I cannot recommend her too highly.
Source point / scar work JR December 2017
In January 2016 I was diagnosed with a rare, highly aggressive form of breast cancer and began a rigorous ten month programme of chemotherapy, surgery and radiotherapy.
Fortunately I already knew Vivien Skelton and had no hesitation in turning to her for help. Vivien supported me throughout my treatment with Source Point therapy. This is gentle and non-invasive but also very powerful. I found Vivien’s work – and indeed her presence – to be deeply calming and reassuring. It is difficult to explain. She didn’t just help me to cope with the challenging conventional treatments but to open myself to them without resistance, making matters easier for my doctors as well as for me. On a more practical note, no matter how bad things were, I always left Vivien’s treatment room looking and feeling better than when I arrived.
My outlook now is much more positive than the doctors initially predicted. I have some interesting scars – but I am confident that Vivien will help with those as well.
Really knows her stuff. Very knowledgeable and very helpful with good communication. I feel a lot better.
My Rolfing Journey – JC Staffordshire
I read an interesting article about Rolfing a few months ago and it sparked my curiosity, my primary reason being to gain relief from on-going back pain as a result of surgery 10 years ago. I’ve tried many types of treatment but none so far has had a lasting effect.
I did some research and discovered Vivien as one of the nearest Rolfing practitioners in my area.
I had a great explanation about the founder of Rolfing and what it involves. Vivien studied the way I walk and also how I sit and gave me some really useful advice on how to sit so that I took pressure off my back and balanced my body weight more effectively.
My first session gave me immediate and profound changes to the way my body felt. Difficult to explain but in essence I felt as if all moving parts had been given a good dose of WD40! Everything seemed to move more easily and I left feeling very positive.
This positivity continued to flow and I felt more able to carry out tasks I had previously shied away from because of my back problem. My husband also commented on the change in my demeanor and how happy I seemed. I had more energy and enthusiasm than I had felt in a very long time.
During the process Vivien also did some work on the scar tissue on my back following the operation – this definitely helped to loosen off the tension, giving me more freedom of movement. Previously it had felt very ‘tight’ and restrictive and after the treatment it definitely felt much looser giving more length to my back.
I decided to embark on 3 sessions (I am away for a few months at the end of April) and the programme of 10 can be punctuated after session 3 and session 7 if necessary.
This week Vivien concentrated on my lower legs, feet and ankles. The interesting thing to note here is that until I had the treatment I hadn’t appreciated just how stiff my ankles were and also how my feet connected with the floor as I walk. This treatment is a two way street and you have to really engage with your body and how it feels to support the process. We all walk or rush around all day and never really stop to think about how we connect at ground level and the impact this has all the way up through the body. However this treatment really started making me aware.
Vivien also looked at how I stand and where I position my weight – helping me to correct my posture.
The impact was at surface level, less profound than the first treatment but during the course of the following week I, began to realise that I was walking with more awareness and my connection to the ground with each step was better – basically walking just felt easier. I also had a greater balance when standing and more awareness of shifting my balance if it felt ‘off-line’.
When we talked and I referred to my ‘back problem’ Vivien suggested I think about this differently and not consider it ‘a problem’.
The operation had resolved the problem however I had been left with pain in the area of my back. It was still an area of my body that I felt was vulnerable, so I still thought of it as a problem, as the body remained protecting the area. However after receiving some Rolfing, which helped to realign my whole body, I noticed the body softening and gaining more support in other areas so I could allow my back to relax.
I found this advice incredibly useful as I have always considered by back a problem since the operation. I needed this piece of advice to help me think about self-communication and how it could be impacting on how I feel.
This week we concentrated on the sides of the body and this had a more obvious impact. After Vivien worked on one side of my body she asked me to stand up and notice any changes, what did I sense etc. As she doesn’t usually ask people to look in the mirror I asked if I could have a look in the mirror to also see the changes that I felt. My body looked very different on the side I had received treatment. There was an obvious smooth flow all the way up from my foot to the side of my face whereas the other side looked more like bottom, middle and top sections.
At the end of the session I felt much lighter and my overall movements felt much more fluid.
The difference in how my body feels is quite dramatic. I walk most days for a few miles and the first morning after my treatment I felt so loose and relaxed – I was able to climb over walls and styles with so much more ease and flexibility – this in turn has given me such a boost in myself as I just feel so much better in my body!
The 3 sessions overall have enabled me to feel more positive and more able to get on with life as I feel able to physically do so much more.
My Rolfing Journey – JC Staffordshire -continued
Following a nasty fall in August of last year which left me with a very painful shoulder and very limited movement (torn rotator cuff) I had several months of physio treatment followed by a steroid injection and further physio. Whilst there was some improvement I still had significant pain and lack of movement which was affecting other areas of my body, in particular my back.
I decided to contact Vivien to see if she could help – I just wish I’d done it sooner!
I hadn’t appreciated just how helpful Rolphing can be to aid recovery after injury.
After assessing me Vivien felt that there was a lack of connection with my lower body and in particular my feet, so the first session we focussed on this. WOW what a revalation! I hadn’t realised the loss of connection I’d had with my feet and legs. During the treatment I felt gradual movement in the areas Vivien worked on and a loosening of the joints. This improved my pelvis and hip flexibility.
By the evening at home my toes were literally tapping – almost without me realizing. They genuinely were ‘happy feet’ and needed to let me know. Even after this one treatment I felt much improved with the general level of pain.
This week Vivien focussed on my upper body and ‘joining up the dots’ with the work we’d done last week.
The process is difficult to put into words but as Vivien works on each area there is a gradual movement and ‘letting go’ of tension and pain.
We managed to get my arm moving and stretching to a degree I haven’t known since pre my fall – brilliant work!
Equally importantly by the end of this session all areas felt joined up again and moved more freely.
Some good reminders again about posture and sitting were really useful.
This improvement has continued over the last 5 days and my pain level is minimal.
To be continued……..
Back, neck and shoulder pain – HB -Tenbury Wells
“I once heard someone speak about Rolfing in glowing terms, as one of the few body treatments worth considering, because it actually works. I ignored that message and then heard it said again at a later date. This time, I took note, did a Google search, found Vivien Skelton at Rolfing Midlands and, after some discussion, made my first appointment with her.
On the day, despite feeling a little apprehensive, Vivien quickly put me at ease with her gentle and professional manner. Although I had decided I would take the first 3 of the Rolfing “Ten” Series to give it a fair trial, I knew as I experienced this initial session, that I would be taking all of the 10.
Vivien is considerate, non judgemental and highly intuitive as well as being expert at what she does. Each session has a particular purpose, fully explained, and yet nothing is written in stone, as everything was geared to the requirements and needs of my body, on that day.
I experienced the Rolfing “Ten” Series to be a wonderful journey, with many fantastic changes along the way. These include greater confidence and a willingness to be more aware of how I use and move my body. Even when I had some pain, Vivien’s way of working did not cause more pain, instead I found it to be a very powerful pain reliever as it freed up stuck parts.
Despite having had back/neck/shoulder problems for many years, I am continuing to experience consistently more comfort, I move with greater ease and I am more than ever, conscious of how I sit, walk, and generally use my body. Added to that, I noted during the series that I am happier, and I am smiling and laughing much more too!
In my world this is an amazing treatment with an amazing practitioner who is clearly passionate about her work and helping her clients. I have no hesitation in wholeheartedly recommending her and Rolfing, and I will be returning at some point for further work.”
My lower back and neck issues are better – KT-Tamworth
“After being recommended by my partner to try Rolfing and Vivien for my posture and back issues following my recent baby, I was keen to try a different approach to looking at my problem areas rather than the ‘quick fix’ and short lived affects of massages.
I was apprehensive at first, but all my worries and questions were put at ease by Vivien. A welcoming and friendly reception, a relaxed approach and environment all made me feel good about starting Rolfing. Starting with 1 session and then building to a 10 step program as i felt necessary was an enjoyable 6 months. Each session was explained on its focus, whilst taking into consideration my particular problem areas. As I started to see progress, I really looked forward to my next time to feel even better within my own body and movements from the treatment I had. Now after completing the 10 sessions, I feel back to normal, my lower back and neck issues are better, as well as a spine twist which I didn’t know i had. I will be happy to go back to Vivien if any new issues arise during my future, and feel confident she will put my body back on the straight and narrow!
I would recommend Rolfing Midlands with Vivien to anyone.
Thank you again!”
Lower back pain- PM-Coventry
“I am in my early sixties and some five years ago started to experience serious lower back pain. The pain curtailed my jogging activities and simple things like tying up shoelaces and getting out of bed became very difficult. My posture was seriously impacted.
I attributed the condition to the onset of “old age”. Visits to a chiropractor were successful in getting me straightened out and relieved the pain in the short term but the condition would always come back.
A work colleague suggested I try “Rolfing” and after a 10 session course I am amazed at the long term results. My posture is upright and appears to be in balance. I can touch my toes and do up my shoe laces without effort and I literally spring out of bed in the mornings. Well worth the money.”
Rolfing as a recovery process- JR-Sutton Coldfield
“I came to Rolfing as part of a long process of recovery from injury and orthopaedic surgery. I completed the ten series with Vivien and continued with treatment afterwards, combining elements of Rolfing, Rolf Movement and Source Point as the body requires. Vivien is highly intuitive, gentle and sensitive and I have found the benefits – to mind as well as body – to be profound.”
A new me – KR Coleshill
“My first experience of hands on work was 27 years ago when I first had lessons in the Alexander Technique. Since then I have continuously investigated mind/body therapies and philosophies in an attempt to prevent emotional reactivity from interfering with the natural equilibrium of the mind/body.
Several months ago I felt stuck so I decided to give Rolfing a try. I was immediately impressed by Vivien’s knowledge of anatomy, her insight into patterns of tension held in the body, and her skill in releasing those tensions. Starting with standing, subtle adjustments using the lightest touch seemed to make immediate improvements to my standing balance. Then while lying down, exquisitely skilful manipulations of the fascia were used in conjunction with directed movements of parts of the body to facilitate release and integration – this resulted, for instance, in my having a new, felt, experience of the integration of the legs into the hips and the torso. When standing up from the table the difference to my previous state always seemed quite remarkable and this was then carried over to walking.
Vivien succeeded in getting me sitting on my “sit bones” so that my spine supports itself – which helps me not to slump and has really helped me in working all day at my desk. My standing balance has been greatly improved – I am more upright, my legs feel “sprung” and I feel more supported. Along with the physical benefits I experienced psychological benefits: I feel calmer, more at ease and confident generally as well as in specific activities such as driving. After a few sessions I felt energised and began having singing lessons which I am still enjoying.”
The running yogi KJ – Bramhall, Manchester
“As a runner for many years and a more recent convert to yoga, I stumbled across Rolfing in a blog written by a fellow Ashtanga Yogi (a dynamic, flowing form of yoga) and runner in the United States. Given that we shared many niggles and a similar degree of inflexibility, my interest was piqued and I followed his online updates on a Rolfing Ten Series with particular interest.
Given his positive comments, I searched for a Rolfing expert in my area and discovered Vivien Skelton’s practice in Lichfield. I was not to be disappointed and my journey from Cheshire once every two to three weeks has proved hugely beneficial. Vivien has all but eliminated long standing aggravation in my right shoulder and knee, and recurring (and frequently, acute) sciatic pain has also been absent for quite some time.
Significantly, my yoga practice has improved markedly. I’m aware of far more space and movement in my hips, knees, ankles, neck, shoulders and spine. Off the mat I feel much more relaxed and comfortable as a result of improved awareness of posture and gait which Vivien’s Rolfing has brought.
I cannot recommend Vivien highly enough. I’m simply delighted with the results of my Rolfing Ten Series. In addition to the sense of wellbeing immediately following a session, I have taken many of Vivien’s tips and tricks into my life and have little doubt that the changes she has initiated will reap rewards long into the future.”
Improved health. EH-Rugeley
“Rolfing was a great benefit for my health problems. After many years of being let down by the Health Care system Rolfing became my last resort. I learned so much from Vivien, sitting, standing and walking all helped me with back pain. I gained a more conscious understanding of bodily movement and I’m very grateful for the whole experience.”
Finding my feet again- Mr Moses
It has been one month since my last Rolfing appointment with Vivien, every day I am thankful for starting and then completing the ten step journey.
Vivien is an awesome therapist and throughout the 10 sessions she made me feel at ease and expertly identified where my body was holding tension and gently assisted me in finding my feet again.What a nice feeling!
I have been using massage and yoga to help re-align my body for years and thought that was the key, but I never really managed to become pain free. My back was the main problem and every morning I would have pain on leaving the bed and this would continue throughout the day. Sure the yoga and massage helped but it was not getting to the root of the problem. It was by chance that I found myself working in the Midlands and having always wanted to try rolfing I contacted Vivien for an appointment and from the that first session knew it was something special.
I kept up the sessions and my body responded by becoming pain free for the first time in years, not only that but I now have a new found body awareness that is amazing. Happy to say it has changed my life!
Thank you Vivien for your time and patience with helping me on this journey and when I am back in your part of the country I look forward to some Rolfing movement sessions
If anybody reading this has any questions that I can help with please feel free to contact me.
Find your feet, feel the ground, free your body!
Further understanding of my body and a respect for myself .
Adam P (47) Colwall, Herefordshire
After having already gone through the 10-series a few years ago in London, I have been working with Vivien for well over a year now, with appointments dispersed through the year around her extensive further training programme.
I have had general mobility issues from of over-training / inappropriate training for Rugby when a younger man, latterly the same for Golf and more recently have added high stress levels in my work life as a Main Contractor in the Construction industry.
I played Rugby to a high level in my school days and later became a professional Golfer, which required a level of mobility, not required for normal life and which has provided me an awareness of my body and it’s limitations.
Vivien is the closest Rolfer I could find, and she surprised me with the delicate touch that I would not have associated nor understood was associated with Rolfing and was not what I’d experienced before; but how effective this communication with my body has been!
Vivien’s understanding and intuition have combined to unravel tension patterns and habits to bring an ease of being that is sophisticated and impactful in ways beyond just changes in my mobility and comfort. It has brought with it further understanding of my body and a respect for myself that I have never had before.
Thank you Vivien and I look forward to my next session with real excitement.
Certified Advanced Rolfer™
Rolf Movement Practitioner™
ScarWork Therapy Practitioner
SourcePoint Therapy Practitioner™
Yoga Teacher BWY Diploma
Somatic Experiencing Practitioner™ (SEP)