Myofascial Release Therapy
Myofascial release therapy is used to treat myofascial pain syndrome which is a chronic pain disorder caused by restrictions found in the myofascial tissues which may cause pain or dysfunction.
What is fascia?
Fascia is connective tissue that completely surrounds and supports all the soft tissue throughout our body. Think of fascia like a wet-suit. It completely envelops every inch of tissue in our bodies and it must glide over the top of the other tissues in which it interplays. Often described as the skin on raw chicken, — it glides over the top of the meat (or muscle). The fascia in the human body must do the same thing. The skin, fascia and muscle must all be able to move freely in order to optimally move and perform. In contrast, pain occurs when adhesions form between different layers of tissue.
How Does The Technique Work?
Myofascial release works to ease tension and to improve pliability of the tissue. Uniquely, myofascial release is often used over a broad area of muscle and tissue, rather than at single points like with acupressure. It is applied with a slow, sustained stretch that the fascia can break down. This releases restrictions and enhances gliding between the different layers.
What Does Myofascial Release Look Like?
Your therapist will gently palpate the myofascia and will feel for stiff or tightened areas. Normal myofascia should feel pliable and elastic. The therapist will begin massaging and stretching the areas that feel rigid with light manual pressure which then aids the tissue and supportive sheath in releasing pressure and tightness. Ultimately, the process is repeated multiple times on the same trigger point and on other trigger points until the therapist feels the tension is fully released.
Who might benefit from Myofascial Release Therapy?
Patients with myofascial pain syndrome who frequently benefit from this type of therapy have a variety of conditions including headaches, Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, chronic strains and more. Myofascial release is a gentle technique that is indicated for most people and is often well tolerated.