Hellerwork is an mode of bodywork that focuses on educating patients about proper movement and posturing. Basically, the approach seeks to re-train the mind to allow the body to move naturally on a conscious and on a subconscious level. Manipulation of soft tissues is an important element of the approach.
While Hellerwork may resemble the Alexander and the Trager approaches, it is unique in that part of the process involves verbal dialogue. The discourse develops a strong connection between the mind and the body. Joseph Heller, an aerospace engineer, is the mind behind the technique developed in the 1970s.
Using the approach to coordinate the mind and the body has a significant impact on a person’s overall wellbeing. The therapy is believed to treat the following conditions, but some find relief from other symptoms and health problems as well.
• Posture problems
• Neck, back and shoulder discomfort
• Anxiety and stress
• Improper body alignment
The strategy is among a number of different approaches that seek to create harmony between the mind and the body. Many movements are automatic, resulting from subconscious workings of the mind. Retraining the mind to work with the body’s natural instincts is an important aspect of this type of approach. Hellerwork is unusual because it incorporates verbal dialogue into the session.
When someone falls into a hypnotic trance, he is in the alpha state. This state is relaxed and people go in and out of the alpha state throughout the day. Adding dialogue into the mix is a way to help the mind develop new ways of communicating with the body. Like hypnosis, Hellerwork seeks to develop new patterns of habit on a subconscious level using deep relaxation and suggestions through language.
Language is significant because words lead to thought. Each thought sparks a new neurological pathway in the brain, and as the thought is repeated, the pathway becomes stronger. Hellerwork uses thought processes to create new patterns in body positioning and movement that reflect the body’s natural flow.
Verbal dialogue is also important in developing healthy emotional states as well. A person can block her natural body movements with tension and apprehension when in a poor emotional state. The dialogue combined with the relaxing exercises and manipulations serves to promote healthier emotional states. This ultimately leads to structural integration.
Hellerwork Structural Integration recognizes that mental functioning, emotional states and physical states are interconnected. They each depend on one another for optimal health and wellbeing. The approach seeks to help people uncover their original state of good health.
The system can be effective in treating many conditions, and its effectiveness as a mode of deep relaxation is readily apparent. Developing a sense of calm and deeper body awareness are also important components when you bring the mind and body together.
Hellerwork’s dialogue helps to facilitate improved emotional states that translate into fluid movements. The words coordinate with thoughts that create neurological pathways in the brain that are strengthened with repetition. Each subsequent session builds upon the last, making Hellerwork a progressive therapy in alternative medicine.