Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Sam Adams provides rolfing, FMS, and massage therapy in the New York and Baltimore Areas!

“I always thought massage was just to make you feel relaxed or to get rid of neck pain or sore muscles. I went to Sam Adams because an athlete friend suggested it. What I found out is that his kind of massage and the Rolfing change your body and mind for the better.”

Angela K., Baltimore, Maryland

What bodywork modalities do you provide?

I’m the only bodyworker I know of who’s trained and certified in Advanced Rolfing, massage therapy, Functional Movement Screening, and Selective Functional Assessment.

Where do you provide your therapeutic services?

I have very comfortable treatment offices in Manhattan and in Baltimore.

Please explain the difference between Rolfing and massage therapy.

I started my bodywork career as a massage therapist and am an expert in medical massage. My uniquely effective style of massage therapy feels very good and is relaxing and deeply pleasant, but goes beyond that because it’s targeted towards healing. Rolfing may at first seem like massage, but it has a totally different approach. Rolfing rebalances, mobilizes, and strengthens your musculoskeletal structure in ways that even the best massage therapy can’t do.

Sam Adams, massage therapy, rolfing, and functional movement screening expert.

How long does an appointment last?

Appointments are between 60-90 minutes. Most massage therapists and Rolfers only provide 60 minutes max. But unlike other bodyworkers, I don’t cut the session off after an hour if your body needs more work. I’m dedicated to your health outcomes—not a time clock.

What should I do just before and just after an appointment?

The ideal activity just before an appointment is to take a hot shower or bath… be totally relaxed. Don’t drink caffeinated beverages or eat a heavy meal within two hours before the appointment. After the appointment, leave time to do gentle stretching, perhaps a bath or shower. Do some yoga or Pilates. Give yourself time to luxuriate in the changes we’ve created in your body.

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I've heard Rolfing is a program that takes ten sessions to complete. Is this true?

The creator of Rolfing, Ida Rolf, proposed a ten session program that many Rolfers use as a template for their work. While it’s a workable foundation, it has limitations. That’s why I created a new form of Rolfing called Strength and Mobility (SAM) Rolfing that accelerates and strengthens the benefits you get from each session. I recommend you experience at least five SAM Rolfing sessions if not more. I’m a Rolfer who no longer relies exclusively on the ten session format.

How often should I get Rolfing?

Many of my clients get Rolfing on a weekly basis, and intend to do so for the rest of their lives, especially if they’re experiencing high degrees of stress or pain, suffer from injuries or debilitating conditions, or are engaged in activities such as competitive sports, dance, martial arts, bicycling, running, and other demanding physical activities.

What kind of space do you do your therapeutic sessions in?

In Baltimore, I conduct sessions in a comfortable, top-floor room in the quiet Locust Point townhome I share with my lovely, talented, wife and two amazing daughters. The room is private, climate-controlled, and has scenic views of Baltimore’s inner harbor and cityscape.

In my New York City office, I have a private therapy room at the elite Physiofitness physical therapy clinic. It’s located conveniently in the heart of Soho… easily accessible to subway lines 6, B,D,V, F and R.

In both locations where I work, your utmost comfort, security, and privacy are absolutely guaranteed.

I’ve heard that you offer “Rooftop Rolfing Adventures,” and other creative sessions. What does this consist of?

At my Baltimore studio during appropriate weather, we can go onto the roof overlooking Baltimore’s skyline and inner harbor. Not only do I bring my Rolfing and massage table up there, we also do movement therapy, calisthenics, strength training, and other interactive work to make your bodywork experience even more enjoyable and effective than ever. It’s a very scenic and refreshing environment… a one of a kind experience.

Do you have any Rolfing or massage services for couples or friends who want to do sessions together?

I do have training that combines yoga, couples work, and physical therapy tools so I can show you and another person how to assist each other with movements, stretches, strength training, and other modalities that will increase your body’s strength, poise, and flexibility. The social aspect of this is good fun, and it also helps your body to have a partner who assists in stretches, movements, and Rolfing methods. Please ask me about fees and logistics for these sessions!

Sam Adams helps your mobility and flexibility with Rolfing, massage therapy, and functional movement screening.

How much do your services cost?

Quality massage therapists charge $80-110 for a session if not more. Rolfers charge between $160-270 per session. I’ve worked hard to hold my fees down. If you pre-pay for multiple sessions, I give a discount. Get in touch so we can talk about fees. I want you to experience the many benefits of SAM Rolfing, my specialized massage therapy, FMS, and SFMA. I’ll do everything possible to create an affordable fee structure for you.

What are sessions like? Do I have to be fully unclothed?

SAM (Strength and Mobility) Rolfing is like a combination of a massage therapy appointment, along with gentle physical therapy. FMS and SFMA are evaluative testing procedures. Massage therapy is done on a massage table. My SAM Rolfing and massage therapy are relaxing and invigorating. Shorts and a t-shirt are fine.

What will SAM Rolfing do for me?

SAM Rolfing builds strength and mobility into your body. It reduces conditions that create tension, imbalance, and pain. It makes you feel taller, stronger, more balanced, more energetic. It can improve your athletic performance, help you work, play, and sleep better, and even has psychological benefits. It can prevent injuries, and remediate them.

What specific body problems does SAM Rolfing help to reduce?

SAM Rolfing helps almost all body problems, including: arthritis, lumbar surgery, lower back pain, cervical surgery, cervical pain, whiplash and other car accident injuries, repetitive motion injuries, knee pain, knee injuries, knee replacement complications, joint pain, hip pain, scoliosis, broken bones, torn ligaments, chronic neuropathic pain, fibromyalgia, herniated discs, shin splints, muscle tension, muscle cramps, pain in the neck, low energy, weakness, eye problems, cartilage injuries, ringing in the ears, ankle sprain, broken foot, jaw and TMJ problems, insomnia and other sleep disorders, carpal-tunnel, depression, cerebrospinal problems, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, sports injuries, tennis elbow, bursitis, stress fractures, plantar fasciitis, rotator cuff injuries, nerve problems, poor balance, sinus problems, joint pain, Achilles tendon injuries, quadriceps injuries, foot arch pain, sciatica, calf strain, hyperactivity, aging, rheumatoid arthritis, chronic fatigue, groin pull, hamstring tears, ballet injuries, triathlon injuries and performance enhancement needs, slow reflexes, bone spurs, hernias, fractures, concussions, anterior and posterior cruciate ligament injuries, headaches, and other conditions.

I see that there’s a questionnaire you want me to fill out before our first session. What’s that for?

The questionnaire gives you the chance to tell me your medical history and what you’re hoping to get from SAM Rolfing. I also use FMS and SFMA—two physical therapy evaluation and remediation techniques that give me deep insight into what your body needs. Read more here about FMS and SFMA.  Please click here to fill out and submit the online form.

What kinds of activities does Rolfing help me do better?

My clients include office workers, moms, teachers, construction workers, professional athletes (including a member of the Baltimore Ravens), dancers, martial artists, tennis players, runners, bicyclists, Pilates, weightlifters, retirees, triathletes, marathon runners, attorneys, college professors, golfers, nurses, doctors, police officers, emergency workers, judges, and many others. SAM Rolfing improves energy, posture, strength, and mobility, while decreasing tension, injuries, and pain. This benefits everyone, no matter what they do in life.

Why should I have your massage therapy and Rolfing services instead of other types of body therapy?

Many of my clients have tried Swedish massage, cranialsacral, Reiki, sports massage, chiropractic, pharmaceutical drugs, surgery, physical therapy, kinesiology, massage therapy, Chinese massage, medical massage, osteopathy, shiatsu, acupressure, acupuncture, muscle energy, myofascial release, kinesio-taping, and other modalities. If those modalities are offered by a competent, licensed professional, they can help in some cases. But I believe my work is more effective, and I have a scientific testing and monitoring method (using FMS and SFMA) that proves the effectiveness.

Is your work covered by insurance?

I can help fill out a form you can submit to your insurance company, but my policy is to get payment from you after every session, or to have you pre-pay to get a discount for multiple sessions. The financial responsibility for the full cost of the session is the client’s responsibility.

What is your cancellation policy?

Time is valuable, so please be on time for your session. Your appointment is your personal block of time, and if you are late, it’s time lost from your session.

If you need to cancel a session, a minimum of 48 hours notice via email is required. If you do not give 48 hours’ notice, you are liable for the full session fee. If for some reason I have to cancel an appointment, which is extremely rare, I’ll owe you a free session and will notify you of the cancellation as soon as I know I have to do it.

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Sam Adams - Rolfing and Functional Movement Screening in Baltimore & New York

“After years of pain, taking prescription drugs, and after three horrible failed surgeries, I turned to Sam Adams. He patiently worked on me, coached my rehabilitation, and became a true friend. This man is a caring person and a truly gifted healer!”

Samantha Powell, New York City