Postural Integration

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Postural Integration (PI) is an alternative process-oriented, body based therapy originally developed in the late 1960s by Jack Painter (1933-2010) in California, USA, after many years of self-exploration in the fields of humanistic psychology and the human potential movement. The method aims to support personal change and self development, [1] through a particular form of manipulative holistic bodywork. [2]



During his time as Professor of Philosophy at the University of Miami, Painter became interested in working with the body and personally explored many different approaches – massage, acupuncture, Zen, Yoga, Gestalt therapy (with Fritz Perls and Marty Fromm), techniques derived from the work of Ida Rolf (with Bill Williams), the theories of William Reich in the form of Vegetotherapy (with Raffaele Estrada Villa) and many others. In the process he became increasingly interested in integrating influences and aspects from these different approaches into an effective and coherent method of personal growth, self-development and healing, which by the seventies led to the development of a form of holistic bodywork he called Postural Integration, stating however that -- "the form of bodywork which I created is not an eclectic combination of techniques I experienced or learned -- it is a singular approach to the whole person". [3]

In practise

The PI practitioner works simultaneously with direct deep tissue massage, [4] breath work and energy flow. [5] During sessions emotional expression is encouraged and furthered. [6] Additional approaches include bodymind drama and movement awareness. [7] The ultimate goal of Postural Integration is to empower the unity of the bodymind, [8] – that is, of the client’s body, emotions and attitudes.

In the course of upwards of ten sessions, a session typically 60-90 minutes, [9] the Postural Integration process comprises manipulative deep softening and reorganization of the myofascia, [10] combined with fine energy work, accupressure and elements from the Five Phases system. [11]

Postural Integration is taught and practised in Europe, USA, Canada, Mexico, South Africa and Australia. Postural Integration trainings and trainers are organized within the International Council of PsychoCorporal (Bodymind) Integration Trainers (ICPIT).

In the 1990s Psychotherapeutic Postural Integration (PPI) developed out of Postural Integration, a method recognized by the European Association for Body Psychotherapy.


  1. ^ Painter, Jack: Postural Integration, Transformation of the Whole Self (1985)
  2. ^ Painter, Jack: Technical Manual of Deep Wholistic Bodywork, Postural Integration; published by
    The International Centre for Release and Integration, Mill Valley, Calif. USA (1984) (2nd edit. 1990)
  3. ^ Painter, Jack: Technical Manual of Deep Wholistic Bodywork, Postural Integration, p.14; (1st edit. 1984)
  4. ^ Painter: Ch.II pp.15-24
  5. ^ Painter: Ch.IV pp.29-36
  6. ^ Painter: Ch.III pp.25-28
  7. ^ Painter: Ch.V pp.37-41
  8. ^ Painter: Ch.VIII pp.63-68
  9. ^ Painter: Part II pp.69-220
  10. ^ Painter: Ch.VI pp.43-51
  11. ^ Painter: Ch.VII pp.53-51

See also

External links

Reading references