IASI Symposium 2021 Schedule Day 2

Keynote 2: Saturday, March 27, 2021 | 9:30 AM – 10:30 AM PDT

Fascia and the Autonomic Nervous System 

Recent investigations have revealed that the fascial system constitutes our richest sensory organ. Among the many different myelinated and free nerve endings, sympathetic nerves provide the most frequent innervation type in fascial tissues. What do we know about the function of these nerves? How do other fascial mechanoreceptors loop back into the Autonomic Nervous System? And what do we know about the detailed connections between fascial stimulation, interoception and chronic emotional states? This presentation will focus on connecting recent laboratory findings with potential clinical applications in myofascial manual therapy as well as in fascia-oriented movement education. 

Presented by: Robert Schleip, PhD

Robert Schleip directs the Fascia Research Project of Ulm University in Germany. Having been an instructor of the Rolfing method of Structural Integration and a Feldenkrais practitioner for over 20 years, he felt frustrated with the speculative nature of scientific explanations backing up most areas of current bodywork. When he entered the field of connective tissue science as an active laboratory researcher in 2003, he became so thrilled that he soon became one of the driving international forces in the newly emerging field of fascia research. His own research findings on active contractile properties of human fasciae have been honored with the Vladimir Janda Award of Musculoskeletal Medicine. He is research director of the European Rolfing Association and co-initiator of the 1st Fascia Research Congress hosted at Harvard Medical School (Boston 2007) as well as of the subsequent congresses. 


Session 7: Saturday, March 27, 2021 | 10:40 AM – 11:55 AM PDT

SI and Back Pain - Complex Patterns and Simple Solutions

Low back pain can range from slightly bothersome to downright debilitating and whether we directly target it or not with our work, it's a phenomenon that shows up quite often for our clients. The more we can understand about complex back pain patterns, the better we can use SI’s unique and powerful potential to address and improve them, without risking harm. Low back pain can have both wildly diverse driving components as well as equally varied impacts on our clients’ lives. This presentation will cover some of the latest findings in the world of back pain research and reveal some simple approaches as to how the goals and strategies of SI can improve recovery times and bring relief to the stubborn postural and movement patterns that are often related to low back pain. We will dive into hands-on, movement, embodiment, and integration oriented approaches that can be added to the classic SI skill set, and as time permits, we will explore topics like stretching, core stability, strength training, and back pain rehab trends as well.

Presented by: Michael Polon

Michael has been teaching classes and presenting SI related material in a variety of settings for close to 20 years. His experience with presenting this information started back in 2001 as a regular classroom assistant at DIRI. He has taught there since in several different capacities; in addition to teaching a fairly consistent class-load, some of those duties included making regular presentations to the full DIRI faculty and Board as well. In 2011, he had the pleasure of being invited to do the Opening Address at DIRI’s 40th-anniversary membership meeting yet perhaps the presentation he enjoyed the most was at the 2018 IASI Symposium where he had the opportunity to lead one of the breakout sessions. There have been several local PT/Pilates clinics/gyms that have brought him in to either teach hands-on material or to lecture about the art, science, and practice of SI as well.


Session 8: Saturday, March 27, 2021 | 10:40 AM – 11:55 AM PDT

Reflecting on the Way We Touch

Fascia research has shown that fascia is a sensory organ, not just a wrapping, though it is present everywhere in the body.  This presentation will include insights for our manual interventions, shedding new light on how we can interact with our clients through fascia as a sensory organ.

Presented by: Pierpaola Volpones

Pierpaola Volpones is an Advanced Rolfer(TM), Rolf Movement(TM) practitioner and instructor for Rolfing and Rolf movement. She is a member of the Rolf Institute since 1986 and still very active and curious about the work. "I felt in myself and experienced in my work, that our touch can have profound effects on people. The more we can refine our haptic capacity to listen and inform the system, the more the encounter with clients will be satisfying for them and for us.”



Session 9: Saturday, March 27, 2021 | 12:30 PM – 1:45 PM PDT

Marketing Touch in a Digital Age

This presentation will cover a clear marketing plan of best practices for websites, social media, and email marketing.

  • Defining what you do, for whom, and why they should trust you
  • 3 steps to simple and clean websites
  • The power of video testimonials
  • Referrals and loyalty programs that work
  • Why email wins over Facebook and Instagram, every time
  • When to use zoom meetings vs zoom webinars to build your brand 

Presented by: Melanie Burns

Melanie Burns is the Chief Operating Officer of Anatomy Trains and Director of Anatomy Trains Europe and UK, with a 20-year career in international business, working with Digital Equipment Corporation, IBM, Microsoft and Cisco. She is a board member of the Ida P. Rolf Research Association and a founding member of the Australia Fascia Symposium.

Melanie has a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Clark University, is a Licensed Massage Therapist, and a graduate of the Anatomy Trains Structural Integration (ATSI) program. She has assisted Tom Myers internationally in manual therapy courses, trauma courses, and in several week-long cadaver dissection programs as well as managing and moderating livestream zoom webinars.  Melanie created course materials and co-produced Anatomy 101 and Science of Stretch with Yoga Journal, as well as several online programs for Anatomy Trains.  She recently created the wildly successful Anatomy Trains MasterClass series with 16 thought leaders in anatomy, movement, and Structural Integration.

Melanie also owns and operates a 500 Hour Yoga Teacher Training School in Maine, and has taught sold-out workshops at the Maine Yoga Festival every year since its inception. She has published articles and teaches courses with Dep Dana at Kripalu on the Polyvagal Theory, and is on the faculty of the Liberation Institute, volunteering to provide yoga teacher training certification and 40 days program within the all-male maximum-security Maine State Prison. Combining her background in psychology, bodywork, and yoga, her passion is working with the survivors of trauma, as they heroically search for safety.


Session 10: Saturday, March 27, 2021 | 12:30 PM – 1:45 PM PDT

Deciphering Dr. Rolf's Method

Over twelve years ago, I began studying Dr. Rolf's Method with the guild for Structural Integration. With more questions than answers, I found the archived recordings of her last classes. As my practice unfurled and questions kept mounting, I found many kernels of wisdom nestled in Dr. Rolf's words. Cross-referenced with class notes, audio recordings, published sources and my own experience, I have woven together important clues towards deciphering Dr. Rolf's method. In this hour, I present my findings.

Covering an in-depth look at SI's roots in General Semantics, the Recipe's evolution, core principles in Dr. Rolf's own words, and a look at how she hoped the field would grow. 

Join me that we may find a few interesting answers and gain some even better questions.

Presented by: Ben Hanawalt

Since Ben began his Structural Integration training in 2008, he has been extremely interested in Dr. Rolf’s method. Since then, he has listened to all the audio recordings made while she was alive that are available through the Guild for Structural Integration and transcribed many that are not. He has included this information in three papers that have been published in the IASI Yearbook

Recently, he has served as the assistant teacher for two Basic Training classes with the Guild for Structural Integration. In the past years, he has also served on several IASI committees and last spring became Board Certified.


Session 11: Saturday, March 27, 2021 | 1:55 PM – 3:10 PM PDT

A Neurovascular Approach to Session One

In this session, Kier Schumaker presents their neurovascular approach to SI. This is an opportunity to experience some wonder and appreciation for the vascular network in the rib cage! You will learn relevant anatomy in the upper thorax, experience a few self-applied Neurovascular Release™ techniques for improving breath and head position, watch a demonstration of an NVR™ manual technique for the territory of Session One, and participate in Q & A.

During this last year of COVID restrictions, Kier discovered some amazingly effective and engaging techniques for working with the client seated through Zoom. This approach to SI is something that both classicists and innovators appreciate. Kier's teaching style is welcoming, strategic, dynamic, direct, and yet gentle, anatomically specific, and generally liberating for movement, posture, and breath.

Kier Schumaker

Kieran Schumaker (who you may know as Kirstin or Kier) approaches their practice of SI with an ever-present awareness of the neural and vascular networks. With clients, Kier focuses on helping people discover greater agility and ease of movement while cultivating interoceptive ability, curiosity, and an appreciation for our amazing bodies. In class, Kier supports practitioners with generous practitioner notes and encourages practitioners who are less confident by promoting an accepting and experimental attitude. While practitioners are learning new skills, Kier expands their mental map of neurovascular anatomy and provides strategies that help both experienced and newer practitioners resolve or greatly improve long-standing functional and postural issues.

Kieran is a Board Certified Structural IntegratorCM, Certified Teacher of Anatomy Trains® Structural Integration, and developer of Neurovascular Release™. They offer Anatomy Trains sponsored NVR™ courses in-person and online for structural integrators, other manual therapists, and movement therapists.



Session 12: Saturday, March 27, 2021 | 1:55 PM – 3:10 PM PDT

Language, Listening, and Learning: The Art of Therapeutic Relationship in SI

In an era where social and cultural norms are rapidly shifting, getting deconstructed, and being re-envisioned, navigating therapeutic relationships can seem more challenging now than ever. As Structural Integration practitioners, our verbal and non-verbal communication skills are just as important as our touch skills. Effective therapeutic communication is fundamental to building a framework for transformative client experiences and language, listening, and learning each play a role in the therapeutic relationship. Current research on language demonstrates the importance of clear verbal communication, which can be challenging when applied to somatic experience. Non-verbal cues can speak more loudly than words and studies show that body language greatly influences the way verbal communication is received. Together we will explore ways in which spoken language, word choices, and non-verbal communication can benefit or detract from client experience, and examine approaches for more effective therapeutic communication in a changing world.

Presented by: Phoenix DeLeon

Phoenix L. Quetzal DeLeón is a Certified Advanced Rolfer ™, Rolf Movement Practitioner ®, and Certified Massage Therapist. She has been in private practice for 16 years, and her practice in Santa Cruz, CA has been open since 2007. Phoenix became a faculty member at the Dr. Ida Rolf Institute in 2018, where she teaches Phases 2 & 3 of the Basic Rolfing ® Certification Program. Her teaching career has spanned multiple subjects, contexts, and age groups over the last 25 years, and she has found great joy in teaching Structural Integration. In 2021, she will complete her Master’s Degree in Somatic Psychology at the California Institute of Integral Studies and begin her journey towards licensure as a Somatic Psychotherapist. Phoenix is actively engaged in creating more equity and inclusion in the field of Structural Integration and bringing more diverse voices, experiences, and bodies to the world of somatic studies. In her downtime, she enjoys surfing, gardening, and spending time in nature.



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