Avid Mountain Biker
I don’t believe in miracles, I only believe in what is proven to work.
I am not really sure what I expected when I walked into my first Rolfing appointment with Allison Benner. Perhaps more pain and theory or another therapy that helped but didn’t ultimately live up to its promise.
Whatever I had thought was wrong.
After half of my life being repeatedly injured ( I was a terrible and clumsy motorcycle racer) and the second half trying to repair the damage, I had finally found a process that worked.
A healer instead of a practitioner… I rarely had to tell Allison what I needed, she already knew.
I turned 71 last week and my back and hips are virtually pain free, and have now been longer than for any period in my long adult life. Joints, muscles, hands and feet are working as they haven’t for decades.
And that’s the truth.
Thank you Allison.
Rolfing with Allison has changed my life. I have scoliosis and have dealt with chronic back pain for most of my life. Before finding Allison, I had tried nearly everything I knew of (except surgery) to try and alleviate the pain--including rolfing with a different practitioner. My first rolfing experience was educational, but I really didn't feel as comfortable and "heard" when I described my pain. It felt as though there was a set routine no matter the individual issues. I noticed immediately that Allison's approach was different and felt more tailored to me. Her exceptional intuition, experience, and education enables her to pinpoint the root cause(s) of the pain and not only does she relieve it, she also teaches techniques to incorporate in everyday life for proactive care to prevent pain. I've been seeing Allison regularly for a few years now and I highly recommend her to everyone I know!
I was a little hesitant and apprehensive before my first visit with Allison. I had heard about Rolfing and how painful it could be. But, at that point in my life, I was tired of being in pain all the time and feeling like, as I got older, it would only get worse. I have scoliosis in my back and neck and I was finding that my pain resulting from how my body had adjusted itself to the curvatures was creating more and more pain. When I met Allison, I found her very knowledgeable about Rolfing and body mechanics in general. She has a great energy about her that immediately put me at ease. She worked on me that day and I already started feeling a difference in my body. Rolfing can hurt but Allison is very aware of this and she is very attuned to how my body responds to what she is doing. She never wants anything to be painful as it will not produce good results if the body has to react to the pain it is feeling. I have been seeing Allison now for about a year. I really wish we had taken “before” and “after” pictures. I really did not think it would ever be possible, but she has been able to transform my body from being in pain to actually being virtually pain free. I would highly recommend Allison as I could have never gotten to this place without her.
Finance & Sales
First and foremost, Allison is simply an amazing person and therapist. Before meeting Allison, I believed Rolfing was a place to go and get 'pounded' on with some really deep tissue work that makes you sore for a few days and eventually better. To my surprise, Allison's practice isn't in the same dimension - She is incredibly gentle and extremely focused. Further to my surprise, I've see more immediate and long term improvements in reversing the negative effects of 15+ years of highly competitive club and college soccer in one session than I've ever experienced in multiple PT, chiropractic or massage sessions combined. Finally, Allison has also introduced me to the idea of feeling great. This, I have learned, is a very different experience than just the absence of pain. I currently don't have much pain but have, over the past 6-8 months, begun to feel great :)
Rolfing and Allison’s knowledge of the practice and awareness of the body have helped me through painful migraines, pregnancy, and recovery after surgery.
At 25 I was a healthy, active woman, but started to suffer from debilitating migraines. I had tried all the OTC pain relievers with no success. At that point, my primary care physician prescribed me a heavy-duty migraine medicine (complete with a myriad of side effects) to take every day. I knew that was not a path that I wanted to go down and began searching for a more holistic way to heal my body. My husband had seen Allison for some time and recommend that I contact her to see if she could help me with my migraines. After a couple of rolfing sessions and some recommended yoga moves to practice daily, my migraines became less and less frequent and eventually subsided.
I did not suffer migraines for several years and continued regular rolfing sessions to maintain my health. Unfortunately, my migraines returned when I became pregnant for the first time. Allison was once again able to help me reduce the frequency of my migraines through rolfing. In addition to reducing my migraines during pregnancy, rolfing helped me to remain pain free and not experience many of the dreaded pregnancy symptoms (nausea, swelling, fatigue). My body felt like it was doing everything it needed to do. I was able to continue my active lifestyle throughout my entire pregnancy and maintain a feeling of openness and alignment in my body. Rolfing after pregnancy helped my body to quickly return to functioning as it did pre-pregnancy.
Rolfing has complimented my lifestyle in so many ways. Growing up and through my 20s I was an avid sports enthusiast. Soccer, tennis, running daily... I played soccer since I was 5 and then competitively through college. It was about 4 years ago that I was having ultra-tight calves after doing any activities for longer than 30 minutes. The tight calves were leading to many other muscle issues even up into my shoulders….It was time to give Rolfing a chance…luckily Allison was close.
Once I spoke with Allison about my issues she walked me through the program. I did 10 visits in 6 months. After my first visit I was confident this could work…by the 4th visit I was well on my way. Allison explained Rolfing throughout the process and educated me on each and every area she worked on. I was back to running and playing soccer within 3 weeks of visits. I finished the first 10 sessions and continue to go back every 3-5 weeks for tune-ups. The tune-ups work on pretty much any issues from tightness in the forearms from being on a computer all day to sore hips…the tune-ups sometimes are just top to bottom to help posture.
My question is always- "How do people not
get Rolfing done in order to maintain quality of life?"
Allison Benner allowed me to realize I did not have to live with the pain I had been enduring for more than 15 years. After countless sports injuries, a car accident, and working in front of a computer for 10 hours a day, I felt spent and depressed that the condition of my body and spirit would never change.
The first time I met with Allison, the pain in my lower back was extremely intense, but had been with me for so long, that I did not realize how bad it had become. I no longer touched, leaned, or otherwise engaged my back and hips. My feet would go completely numb and my calves seized up when I went for a walk. This was because I was holding my posture and joints in such a tense state to mitigate the pain in other parts of my body. My shoulders were constantly sore from holding the same working position, creating a numb sensation in my neck and shoulder blade. I felt that this was simply the way my body worked, and that I had to accept it, which left my body and spirit feeling disconnected.
After meeting with Allison for the first time, I realized that I did not have to live this way. The release I felt within my back was immediate and long lasting. Allison worked with me to regain my natural footfall and end the numbness in my calves and feet. She gave me stretches and exercises to do outside of our sessions, and encouraged me to get up from my computer hourly, do pilates, yoga, go for long walks, and dance. I had never even thought I could dance without pain. Now I try to dance at least once a week, hike with my daughter, take yoga classes when I can, and otherwise live my life feeling whole. I was able to have a natural birthing experience with my daughter, which I was once told by a doctor would be impossible given my injuries.
Allison has not only helped my body to recover through her Rolfing technique, but has connected me to a network of natural health practitioners in Denver which I now consider part of my continuing healing process. I don't know where my mind and body would be without the thoughtful, caring, and experienced approach Allison Benner offers.
I originally went to see Allison for help with an old injury that negatively impacted my balance and posture and caused pain in my hip. As a result of her work, I walk with more ease and energy and feel I have a much stronger, more balanced foundation from which to move. Since then, I've seen Allison for a tennis injury, which definitely aided my recovery. I'm now seeing her in preparation for shoulder surgery. Through working on alignment and muscular organization, I believe I'll have better results both from my surgery and in my recovery.
I so much appreciate the assistance I've received from Allison, but what I really got from her is that I didn't have to live with deficits. I've really learned how to take care of myself and have taken addition steps, including Pilates and Yoga, to be able to move with more efficiency and fluidity. I've told Allison numerous times that she has wise hands.
I have been going to Allison since early 2011. At that time, I was 55 years old and it seems when you get older your body does not respond as it did twenty years earlier. Being in the amusement business from my early 20s moving pool tables, pinballs, etc. I had plenty of time to abuse my body as well as gain additional weight due my metabolism slowing down over the years. In my early 40’s, I started to go to a chiropractor for my back aches as well as have an occasional massage, which only provided me temporary relief. In my late 40s, I partially tore both meniscuses simultaneously when I sat back on my legs cleaning a floor. I went to an orthopedic doc who wanted to use the knife. I decided otherwise and just dealt with the pain. A few years later I tried Synvisc to lubricate my knee joints. That provided temporary relief for a few years but the pain never completely went away. I exercised less because of my knees and got to weigh more than I had ever before. About a year before I went to Allison, I decided that to help my knees I would lose weight through diet and exercise. In the mean time the wheels continued to fall off. I hurt my shoulder picking up a 100lb 14 year old dog who at the time was having trouble getting up.I could not move my arm above my shoulder ("frozen shoulder"). I went back to the doc who wanted (you guessed it) to use the knife, so I went to the chiropractor who helped unstick my shoulder but could not restore my full range of motion. By this time my wife said " Why don't you go to a Rolfer?" Not knowing much about Rolfing, I read up on it and figured I had nothing to lose. I booked an appointment with Allison after doing a search on the internet. It was one of the best choices of my life. I started out seeing Allison about twice a month. She has helped me with my problem areas- shoulders, back, knees, posture, carpal tunnel and more (losing 25 lbs and casual exercise has not hurt either).Through her gentle but firm touch she she has awakened parts of me that I never knew existed and helped blood flow back into the tissue she would break up through her whole body approach.This has allowed me to get my full range of motion back in my shoulders. Allison helped my posture that has helped my back ( I have not been to a chiropractor since Rolfing). My right knee no longer has any pain and my left one probably would not either, if our new dogs had not clipped me from behind, but it is still far better than it was when I started with Allison, plus I have no scar tissue or rehab from surgery. My carpal tunnel is gone thanks to Rolfing and some simple exercises she recommended. Besides Rolfing, what makes Allison special is that she continues to educate herself about the human mind and body and takes that knowledge and applies it in her practice. I still and will continue to see Allison about once a month for maintenance as I am not getting any younger although I feel a lot younger due to seeing Aliison. One thing to remember, although you may experience some immediate relief from Rolfing in one session, it will probably take several sessions and in my case what took 55 years of abuse to develop, I could see dramatic change in the way my body felt and continues to feel within a year. Thanks Allison! By the way I continue to move amusements devices. I just hope I will still be able to get an appointment after this testimonial, as she is already popular.
Manager & Instructor, PH7 Pilates
I started working regularly with Allison a year-and-a-half ago and couldn’t be more grateful. Everyone always says to me, “Doesn’t Rolfing hurt?” Not with Allison is my response. Her hands on technique is gentle yet strong enough to work out the kinks. As a Pilates instructor, Rolfing is very healing to my body since I am consistently on my feet, looking down, putting myself in somewhat awkward positions to adjust people, etc. As a Pilates practitioner, Rolfing has advanced my practice by months if not years as an effect of having worked out some imbalances. On a personal level, Allison is one of the few that actually walks the walk. She will always be able to inspire you with numerous ideas on how to eat better, where to go for a great hike, or take your next adventure. When it comes to whole living, Allison Benner is a great example. She’s passionate, caring, spirited and vibrant.