Navigating the Fascial Matrix
By Annie Wyman and Dameron Midgette


Go around the problem; get the system sufficiently resilient so that it is able to change, and it will change. It doesn’t have to be forced. It’s that forcing that you have to avoid at all costs.

—Ida P. Rolf


The human body is fascinating. With all its myriad systems, tissues, habits, and problems, the puzzles our clients bring through the door are endlessly unique and challenging. It’s easy, with all of this amazing complexity and detail, to get mired in overly specific or narrow techniques and ways of thinking. The beauty in these puzzles doesn’t lie in three pieces over in the corner, or how this piece fits into that one, but the puzzle as a whole, the picture it contains, and finding the relationship between the pieces so that the picture contained within becomes clear. It’s important to know how to fit one piece to another, but that won’t solve the puzzle by itself.

Where can we best get a handle on this puzzle of the body; learn to touch it, see it, move it, and begin to make the changes that are needed? Connective tissue, or fascia is the only fully continuous and unified tissue in the body; fascia is the stuff that makes this wholeness physical fact. It follows, then, that becoming practiced in the ways and qualities of fascia will help us make positive changes in our clients.
Learning to work in this realm requires more than just learning new techniques; it requires a new perspective on and in the body. Tensional balance and segmental relationship engulf and extend the traditional muscular/mechanical model. The body becomes more a relationship of segments and planes than a collection of muscles and bones. Movement changes from contraction between points to expanding into space. The primary question when working becomes “What does this person need?” (assessment and perception), rather than “What do I know how to do/fix?” (technique). And finally, the main intention in our touch transforms from doing something to a body, to evoking something from a system.

Navigating the Fascial Matrix-Advanced Connective Tissue Therapy will follow this path toward a broad and solid knowledge of the connective tissue system. Along the way, we’ll examine old assumptions, see from new perspectives, and develop both range and precision in our touch. Movement (for clients and practitioners) will be a fundamental part of the class, both as a tool for change and as guide and practice. Those with an interest in Structural Integration will be well prepared for training in the field.

We will attempt to honor the broadest range of inspiration, bringing intuition and intellect in equal measure to the table, allowing them to inform and reinforce each other, giving structure and context to guidance, spark and meaning to knowledge.

Fascia is the organ of posture. Nobody ever says this; all the talk is about muscles… The body is a web of fascia. A spiderweb is in a plane; this web is in a sphere. We can trace the lines of that web to get an understanding of how what [sic] we see in a body works.

—Ida P. Rolf


Return to Forum Index | Return to Continuing Ed Page | DSM Home Page