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.
I had severe lower back pain that shot down my leg. I knew that if I didn't seek help I would be immobile in a couple of years. Thankfully I found Allison for yoga therapy. She was patient with my lack of yoga literacy and very knowledgeable about how to stretch out the problem area without irritating it. After only a few months of therapy, I can now keep up with my 5 year old. I continue yoga therapy to keep limber and improve my yoga postures. Thanks Allison for getting me back on my feet and keeping me on my feet.
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.
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.
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!
It is my honor and privilege to write a testimonial about Allison Benner’s Rolfing practice. I first came to Allison 7 or 8 years ago after trying multiple other modalities to address chronic low back pain. After one full series, my low back pain was gone and the pain has never returned. More recently, I was in a car accident resulting in months of multi-week severe headaches. After a lot of physical therapy without any lasting relief, I sought out Allison’s services. I am experiencing a significant decrease in headache frequency, duration, and intensity and I have complete confidence that I will be free from headaches soon. Allison’s expansive knowledge of the body combined with a truly incredible eye for noticing even the slightest dysfunction in how the body moves, sits, or stands results in efficient diagnosis and treatment planning. Allison’s unique skill set also includes her knowledge of the body’s ability to relieve and resolve symptoms of past traumas by focusing on the patient’s body sensations. Allison pulls wisdom from her training and experience as a Kundalini Yoga teacher regarding the movement of energy and the power of breath to further support her clients. Allison’s depth and breadth of knowledge results in a very supportive, well-rounded, and effective healing experience. I’m a very grateful believer in Rolfing and of Allison.
"I see Allison because I have had lots of surgery on my ribs. She helps me by loosening scar tissue so my muscles can move better. I can take bigger breaths and move my arms better. Rolfing doesn't hurt. It feels good most of the time, especially my neck." - Sawyer Benson
"Allison has worked with my son for several years now. Sawyer has thoracic insufficiency which requires surgery at least twice a year. He always looks forward to his appointments. Rolfing has benefitted him in several ways; more flexibility and movement in his rib cage and increased range of motion in his arms. I can't prove the correlation, but since Sawyer has worked with Allison he has not been hospitalized with pneumonia. That's amazing!" - Melissa Benson, Sawyer’s mom
I received Rolfing a number of years ago, which was helpful but extremely painful. I started having hip pain again and was referred to Allison by a co-worker, who raved about Allison's expertise and gentleness. Since then, Allison has helped me in so many ways. Her sure and subtle work has helped unwind old habits and inefficiencies that have hindered my movement and balance. Hips, back, ankles, feet, jaw, ribs – all are more functional, fluid and flexible as a result of Allison's work. Allison's experience with yoga, dance, breath and other healing modalities inform and compliment her work. She approaches each person in their wholeness, educating, encouraging and celebrating along the way. Allison provides an amazing array of ideas, referrals and resources: practices, exercises, poses, props, shoes and classes, all to support one's health and healing. I feel so fortunate to have found Allison and to continue to benefit from her extraordinary gifts, and would encourage anyone who would like to inhabit their body better to experience her work.
Both my husband and I are such believers in Allison's abilities that we have referred at least seven of our friends and family members to her. Each person has been thrilled with the help they they've received and amazed by the depth of her knowledge.
I have been working with Allison for a over a year and I am amazed at the changes in my body as a result of her work and guidance. My posture, which has been poor my whole life, has improved dramatically and the knee pain which was the original cause of my visits has dissipated significantly. I find that my gait is better and my overall physical health has improved as a result of the Rolfing Process. It's hard to explain to people the difference between Rolfing and Massage but all I can say is it works wonders over what a massage can do for your body! I could never do deep tissue/sports massage and yet with Rolfing, deep tissue work is different and doesn't cause continued discomfort. I was skeptical at first, but every time I leave Allison's office I can actually feel the difference in my body, the way that I walk and the way that I carry myself. I have continued to go because I am an avid water skier and I find that she continuously helps me overcome the minor injuries that go with the sport and my other activities. Working with Allison has been a pleasure because of her personality, experience, knowledge and dedication to her craft. I also like that she continues to grow and challenge herself to learn new things. I just wish I could go more often!
Fitness Instructor & Mom of 3
What first brought me to Allison was a right hip issue. While teaching a group exercise class, I could no longer demonstrate lunges because it was so painful. A friend recommended I see Allison and explained what Rolfing was to me. I had NEVER heard of it before, and even had to ask my friend how to spell it. At this point, I had been teaching exercise classes for 20 years, and had 3 C-section deliveries within the last 5 years. All these factors, plus daily life stress, led up to my hip issue.
I asked around to see if anyone else I knew had heard of Rolfing. The ones who had responded with “Man – that is excruciating, but totally worth it!” As much as my hip hurt, I really wasn’t interested in MORE pain to fix the problem. I called Allison after checking out her website, explained my issue, and asked her to please be up-front about the level of pain. If it was as bad as everyone else said it was, then I would find a different solution. Allison said on a scale of 1-10, most clients would say the intensity is never more than a 4. Okay, I thought, I can handle a 4, so I set an appointment.
I have told the story of my first appointment with Allison MANY times – it is something I will never forget. I had not told my husband about the appointment, afraid he would not be supportive. I was also still skeptical, but figured I had nothing to lose. Allison did an initial assessment, asking lots of questions, then watched me walk back & forth. When she had me lie down on the massage table, she started messing with my right foot. It felt as if one of my kids was gently poking me to get my attention. In my head I thought, “Oh great! This is it? My husband is going to kill me if he finds out I spent money to get my foot poked. What does my foot have to do with my hip? Not sure why other people said it was excruciating – it doesn’t feel like she’s doing anything.” Then Allison broke my internal conversation and asked me to walk again.
The moment I stood up from that table, my right foot went flat against the ground, my hip shot back in place, and I could stand up without any pain. It felt like a miracle, and I was completely sold on Rolfing and Allison’s expertise. I know others have not had as dramatic of an experience, but anyone I have ever referred to Allison has had a positive experience working through their own muscle & alignment issues WITHOUT experiencing excruciating pain – including my husband ☺
WHAT KEEPS ME COMING BACK:
A painful issue got me in the door, but Allison’s ability to help me create muscle symmetry is what keeps me as a client. Having Allison’s help to keep my alignment intact allows me to live an active lifestyle without “working through pain.” Whether it is teaching classes, going on hikes with the family, playing tennis, or enjoying the occasional run, I want to enjoy ALL these activities and more without complaining about back/hip/knee/foot/shoulder, or any other kind of pain for as long as I can.
Allison is a remarkable in many ways. She is an excellent listener, and is incredibly thoughtful & gentle in her recommendations. I always feel “lifted up” after leaving a session with her, never beaten down by what I haven’t done right. I’m constantly amazed at her passion for further education in her field, and feel I always benefit from the latest research and techniques in regards to Rolfing. I am very proud to have been one of Allison’s clients for the past 5 years, and would whole-heartedly recommend her services to anyone looking to bring balance to their bodies.