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J Evid Based Complementary Altern Med. 2014 Oct;19(4):297-300. doi: 10.1177/2156587214540466. Epub 2014 Jul 2.

Gait changes following myofascial structural integration (Rolfing) observed in 2 children with cerebral palsy.

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Family Practice Residency, Providence Milwaukie Hospital, Milwaukie, OR, USA.
Private Practice, Palo Alto, CA, USA.
Department of Pediatrics, Stanford University School of Medicine, Palo Alto, CA, USA.
Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Science, UCSF School of Medicine, San Francisco, CA, USA.
Division of Physical and Rehabilitative Medicine, Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital Oakland, Oakland, CA, USA.
Department of Pediatrics, Stanford University School of Medicine, Palo Alto, CA, USA


Children with spastic cerebral palsy experience difficulty with ambulation. Structural changes in muscle and fascia may play a role in abnormal gait. Myofascial structural integration (Rolfing) is a manual therapy that manipulates muscle and soft tissues to loosen fascia layers, reposition muscles, and facilitate alignment. This study aimed to document (1) gait characteristics of 2 children with cerebral palsy and (2) effects of myofascial structural integration on their gait. Children received 3 months of weekly therapy sessions by an experienced practitioner. Gait parameters were recorded at baseline and after treatment using an electronic walkway. Children with cerebral palsy demonstrated abnormal velocity and cadence, decreased step length and single support times, and increased double support time. After treatment, both children demonstrated improvement for 3 months in cadence and double support time. The objective gait analyses demonstrated temporary improvements after myofascial structural integration in children with spastic cerebral palsy.


Rolfing; cerebral palsy; gait; myofascial structural integration

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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