SoulSpension and Physiotherapy


Claudia Maggi

Degree in Physiotherapy
Master in Management of Health Professions
Dance teacher

Work addresses the possible ways of using SoulSpension during physiotherapy sessions in the following chapters:

  1. back pain treatment
  2. re-education of the main neurological pathologies
  3. treatment of mastectomies
  4. youth and sports

The first important feature of the tool- thanks to its conformation - is that, once positioned, it is a "postural detection sensor". This function has a double aspect.

It allows the operator to check the patient's position: from scapulo-humeral girdle to the pelvic girdle, from relationships between position of the sacrum to the head; provides useful information in the evaluation phase and for the entire duration of the treatment.

The second aspect is the continuous feedback that the user receives simply by the pressure of his body on the tracks or on the balls, in relation to the various positioning methods used.

It therefore plays the role of "third hand" for both the physiotherapist and the patient.
The methods commonly used by the physiotherapist according to the Evidence Based Rehabilitation criteria and the protocols used in the clinical practice, can be accompanied and integrated by the use of the SoulSpension Method and tool.

It is a support tool for the operator and the user also with a view to an integration and gradual path transition from care to self-care.

The Italian and international guidelines and the World Health Organization recommend that rehabilitation training, regardless of the pathology, have to be completely carried out with the achievement of the patient's autonomy, also in the educational process: the results achieved during physiotherapy treatment must be maintained thanks to his active collaboration in continuing physical exercise

SoulSpension is therefore a valid help for the activity to be carried out independently.


Analyzing the various branches of rehabilitation it emerges that the search for a good postural alignment, according to different clinical areas, purposes and cultural backgrounds, has always been fundamental in the various physiotherapy methods.

The correct posture of the trunk allows you to breathe in a physiological way.
The correct functioning of the postural muscles, with their preparatory and anticipatory activity of the movements of the limbs, allows the elaboration of the motor project and the subsequent execution of the movement.

The continuous postural adjustments guarantee balance.

In summary, posture can be defined as the result of the integration of the visual, vestibular, somatosensory system, but it is also determined by the emotional state of the subject.
For this reason, postural treatment is a central chapter in Physiotherapy.

Postural Suspension / SoulSpension proposes a combined approach, motor and cognitive, and guides towards a progressive awareness of your body and your posture.
Elizabeth O. Johnson, Ph.D, Panayotis N. Soucacos, MD, "Proprioception" International Enciclopedia of Rehabilitazion, 2012


There are many areas in which SoulSpension can be proposed to integration of standard physiotherapy treatment, precisely for its characteristic of working on posture.
The physiotherapist who deals with back pain evaluates, analyzes and treats any changes in postural structure as possible causes of pain.

Re-education of the neurological patient is also based on the assessment and treatment of postural alignment. A good structure of the trunk in the supine, sitting and upright position guarantees the conditions for correct walking and is the neurophysiological prerequisite for a possible recovery of limb functions and swallowing

In the rehabilitation treatment of mastectomies, particular attention must be paid to maintaining or recovering the scapulohumeral joint, as a prerequisite for ensuring a good structure of the cervico-dorsal tract and preventing any alterations in posture.

Young people who practice sports face pain and minor trauma to the spine: by integrating exercises with SoulSpension to specific training, they can obtain a good awareness of their postural structure and the execution of the athletic gesture can benefit from it.

Back pain
In the treatment of back pain, the most used methods in physiotherapy are based on a careful evaluation of the patient's postural alterations.
Working on breathing, on cranio-sacral alignment, on the harmonization of kinetic chains and on the relationships between the various segments

The Method can integrate, among others, the Mézières method, the Global Postural Re-education, the McKenzie method: the patterns and positions suggested by these techniques can also be achieved using the method and SoulSpension, applying the correct method of use.

In the supine position, a distension of the muscles and ventral bands is obtained, a greater expansion of the diaphragm, the perception of one's spine in contact with the rails is improved, also detecting any areas of asymmetry, pain, stiffness.

Equally in the prone position, the contact with the SoulSpension with the ventral part, appropriately arranged according to the correct technique, leads to a massage and a relaxation of the front part.

Even "team" positions, supine or sitting, and exercises for stretching the kinetic muscle chains, can be proposed using SoulSpension, with the advantage of maintaining correct alignment during work.

The use of the extension - the unit of additional balls - sliding along the tracks, also allows you to work simultaneously on several districts, according to various combinations, for example:

  • Cervical and lumbar curve
  • Cervical curve and interscapular tract
  • Lumbar curve and sacroiliac joints
  • Trigger points of the spine and tracks

From a cognitive point of view, SoulSpension helps to gradually acquire a new and more complete self-image, also understanding its criticalities.

This allows you to create the conditions for a real and radical modification of your posture, through a path of progressive awareness and direct involvement of the user in the healing process.

Self-treatment is a "key" point in various physiotherapy methods. In fact, it is part of the normal work protocol to assign the patient exercises and positions to be repeated outside the session, in order to enhance the effectiveness of the treatment.

SoulSpension also promotes and encourages the person to work autonomously, guaranteeing, among other things, subjective rhythms and methods, therefore customized, built ad hoc on the individual.

Françoise Mézières, La gymnastique statique, Paris, Vuibert, 1947
Michaël Nisand, Sylvie Geismar, La méthode Mézières, un concept révolutionnaire, Ed. J.Lyon, 2005.
Rieducazione Posturale Globale -Il metodo-Philippe Souchard ed. ELSEVIER srl
pubblicazione: 03 /2012
McKenzie R A: Treat Your Own Neck. Spinal Publications, Lower Hutt, N.Z., 1983
McKenzie R A: Treat Your Own Back. Spinal Publications, Lower Hutt, N.Z., 1981

Neurological rehabilitation

The use of SoulSpension in various neurological pathologies is oriented to the needs that the pathology and the specific context of the disease phase require.

Patients with alterations in the trunk-pelvis-head posture can benefit from the instrument while maintaining the sitting position, also possible in a wheelchair.

It is a valid aid during postural re-education in the hemiplegic. It is important for the patient who suffered a stroke in the rehabilitation phase to receive somatosensory afferents; it can therefore be applied under the spine, in the supine position, or under the side, placing the patient in lateral decubitus or in a prone position.

In the treatment of limbs affected by hemiplegia or hemiparesis, SoulSpension can be used by positioning the nucleus of the spheres under the girdle - pelvic or scapular - and sliding the limb along the tracks.

This type of use is also effective in cases of ataxia of the limbs: the rail is a guide and a reference to favor the correct direction during the movement of the upper or lower limb.

In Parkinson's disease, SoulSpension integrates the corrective treatment of the camptocormic attitude - anterior trunk flexion - and can be used in corrective postures in cases of lateral axial deviation - Pisa syndrome

However, it should be noted that the neurological patient benefits from SoulSpension not only from the above-mentioned strategies, linked to the treatment of the disease, but also and above all thanks to the well-being it induces.

In fact, even before taking care of a sick person, the operator treats a person, with his baggage of anxieties and sufferings. Like anyone else who needs to dedicate time to their well-being, SoulSpension helps especially with its relaxing effect.

Bobath B. "Abnormal postural reflex activity caused by brain lesions" 1971
Davies P.M. "Starting again" 1994
Schindler O.,Ruoppolo G.,Schindler A. "Deglutologia" 2001

Masectomy interventions
Postural Suspension / SoulSpension should be used before the surgery, with the aim of promoting a good relationship of the woman with her image and with her body.

After the operation, it acts as a support for maintaining good postural alignment during the resumption of movements of the upper limbs in the supine position.

The proposed exercises are the standard ones, characteristic of Patrizia Gavoni's method.
In this context, more than ever, the work on SoulSpension is complete and is expressed in all its most peculiar and characteristic aspects:

  • the movement of the upper limbs is functional to the recovery of a good range of motion, in a pleasant and gentle way.
  • the elevated, antideclive position of the arms facilitates natural drainage, which is important in these cases
  • the supine position, helps the diaphragm and the pectoral bands relax
  • the SoulSpension massage on the spine produces well-being and relaxation
  • the patient comes into contact with herself and actively participates in the treatment and healing process.

Delayed versus immediate exercises following surgery for breast cancer: a systematic review.
Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2005 Apr;90(3):263-71.
Shamley DR1, Barker K, Simonite V, Beardshaw A
Alterazioni della postura vertebrale e del complesso equilibrio scapolo-omerale nella donna operata al seno: analisi e protocollo terapeutico EUR MED PHYS 2008;44 (Suppl. 1 to No. 3)

Youth and sports
The exercises of the method and SoulSpension are a valid support in the path of proprioception, control and coordination in athletes.

In this field the instrument can prove useful not only on the back and on the prone, but also by proposing exercises sitting, or standing, working in support on the tracks and on the balls.

In case of back pain or minor trauma, the athlete can benefit from an exercise program with the SoulSpension, built specifically for the individual case. The work will be complementary to the rehabilitation treatment and athletic training.


"….For the things we have to learn before we can do them, we learn by doing them…." [Aristotle]

SoulSpension and Patrizia Gavoni's method it is a valid support to physiotherapy treatment, and in this work areas and pathologies have been presented in which it is inserted in an integrative and complementary way for the care and well-being of the user.
The use of the tool produces important stimuli that improve posture and proprioception of the body.

The ability of external afferents to induce important changes to our brain is now widely recognized by the scientific world.

The pressure of our body on the various parts of the instrument allows us to perceive in detail the individual segments mobilized; the exercises performed, thanks to the continuous feed-back of the supports, engage us in the task of focusing every single movement with accuracy.

This type of work leads to the implementation of neuronal connections in the brain areas that represent the body image, enhancing it.

It doesn't only do that.

SoulSpension induces relaxation and well-being: it produces pleasant stimuli, which in turn activate the dopaminergic system (endorphins); it acts as a reward.

It is reasonable to think that this mechanism induce to search for the positive effects obtained during the session, for example appreciate and want to go back more and more frequently on SoulSpension!

Merzenich MM, Kaas JH, Wall J, Nelson RJ, Sur M, Felleman D. Topographic reorganization of somatosensory cortical areas 3b and 1 in adult monkeys following restricted deafferentation. Neurosci 1983: 8(1): 33-55
Plautz EJ, MillikenGW, Nudo RJ. Effects of repetitive motor training on movement representations in adult squirrel monkeys: role of use versus learning. Neurobiol Learn Mem, 2000: 74(1):27-55

I would like to thank Patrizia Gavoni, which gave me the opportunity to know and study the SoulSpension method and tool. In writing this thesis she supported me with her competence and encouraged me with her big heart and her generosity.


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Patrizia Gavoni, CEO Soulspensions

Maria Patrizia Gavoni

CEO Soulspension

The SoulSpension method for postural correction developed over years of research. It has taken its current shape organically, through study and practice which I would like to share with you.