Think of your body as a vertical cylinder. Your body, the vertical cylinder, is made up of both soft tissue (muscles and tendons) and hard tissue (your bones). Hard tissue anchors the soft tissue. Your body moves by soft tissue pulling against hard tissue. For many reasons most of us, very early in life, develop habits of holding some of our soft tissue (muscles) very tightly. If you think about the fact that every muscle attaches (anchors) to at least 2 different bones, then you see that by holding some of your muscles constantly tight, you will produce a twist into your overall vertical cylinder structure. Although you can't feel it, your body has a habit of gripping itself that becomes a system of tightness. When your overall structure twists then some of your joints begin to press on nerves which causes local pains. Something else you can't feel, gravity, is constantly compressing this cylinder so that over time the overall twist gets tighter and tighter. You could think of gravity as a constant pressure on your head that you have become so used to you don't feel. This is referred to as "the compression of gravity." Rolfing is a strategy for bringing awareness to parts of your unconscious habit of tightness. As soon as you become aware of the tightness, some of the tightness will loosen. As your self-grip relaxes, your body structure untwists. As your body structure loosens and untwists then local nerve pressure pains are relieved. Your body also stands straighter.