An example of a compressional structure is a brick house. The walls are formed of brick layers, these are the compressional elements. Each brick layer carries the weight of all the layers on top, the lower layer being the one burdened with the most compressional force.
Within a tensegrity structure you’ll find both compressional and tensional elements. Unlike the bricks, on the previous example, the compressional elements on these structures are not touching each other and the compression is being carried equally by all tensional elements surrounding them. Tents, modern day bridges, sailboats, all of them with their cables and poles are good examples of tensegrity systems.
Remember those skeletons in anatomy class? Most of us have the misconception that we are supported by our own skeletal system, similar to a brick house, one bone on top of the other. If you think about it, all bones in your body are basically floating within a web of fascia. Just like in a tensegrity structure. Think of it as your bones being the compressional elements and your fascia being the tensional elements. Our support comes from our fascia not our bones.
All your life you’ve been told to hold yourself strong, to straighten your back, to tuck your stomach in. This rigidness provided you with the illusion of strength, sort of like an armor (or a brick house). What if instead, it makes you brittle, more prone to injury? SI aims to reclaim the space that was lost due to fascial constrictions, so the body, like a tensegrity structure becomes stronger and resilient to injury by becoming adaptable.