Dr. Ida P. Rolf

Dr. Ida RolfIda P. Rolf, a native New Yorker, graduated from Barnard College in 1916. In 1920 she earned a Ph.D. in biological chemistry from the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Columbia University.

For the next twelve years Ida Rolf worked at the Rockefeller Institute, first in the Department of Chemotherapy and later in the Department of Organic Chemistry Eventually, she rose to the rank of Associate, no small achievement for a young woman in those days.

In 1927, she took a leave of absence from her work to study mathematics and atomic physics at the Swiss Technical University in Zurich. During this time, she also studied homeopathic medicine in Geneva.

Returning from Europe, she spent the decade of the 1930’s seeking answers to personal and family health problems. Medical treatment available at that time seemed inadequate to her; this led to her exploration of osteopathy, chiropractic medicine, yoga, the Alexander technique and Korzybski’s work on states of consciousness.

By the 1940’s, she was working in a Manhattan apartment where her schedule was filled with people seeking help. She was committed to the scientific point of view, and yet many breakthroughs came intuitively through the work she did with chronically disabled persons unable to find help elsewhere.

This was the work eventually to be known as Rolfing. For the next thirty years, Ida Rolf devoted herself to developing her technique and training programs.

During the 1950’s, her reputation spread to England where she spent summers as a guest of John Bennett, a prominent mystic and student of Gurdjieff. Then, in the mid-60’s, Dr. Rolf was invited to Esalen Institute in California at the suggestion of Fritz Perls, founder of Gestalt Therapy. There she began training practitioners and instructors of Structural Integration

Joseph Heller

[one_half_last]Joseph HellerJoseph Heller is an internationally renowned somatic educator who has been doing structural body work for twenty-eight years.

Born in Europe in 1940, he got his early education in Paris. At sixteen, he  and his parents came to the United States and settled in Los Angeles.

As he  matured, Joseph Heller was drawn to the hard sciences and graduated  from Cal Tech.

He worked as an aerospace engineer in the NASA space program during its  heyday of the 1960’s and early 70’s. In 1972 Joseph Heller became intensely involved in humanistic psychology, gave up his science career and was trained by the legendary Dr. Ida Rolf.

After establishing his practice in Los Angeles he was appointed by her to become the first president of the Rolf Institute. Through the early and mid-70’s, Joseph Heller was engaged in extensive training and advanced study with some of the leading figures in the humanistic/health movement such as Judith Aston, creator of the discipline known as Aston-Patterning, Dr. Brugh Joy, physician, author and an innovator in the fields of preventive medicine and healing use of energy and Hal & Sidra Stone, the creators of Voice Dialogue.

As a result of his unique combination of training in structural integration, movement education and body energy awareness and his extensive work with a broad range of clients, Joseph Heller synthesized a new form of bodywork.

In the late 1970’s, he left the Rolf Institute, moved to the San Francisco Bay Area and founded Hellerwork.

As founder of a profound and unique system of body work and movement, he has trained hundreds of practitioners worldwide. Through his writings, trainings and personal practice, Joseph Heller has helped tens of thousands of individuals find more health and ease in their lives.[/one_half_last]