|Myofascial release is generally an extremely mild and gentle form of
stretching that has a profound effect upon the body tissues. Because it
is somewhat different from more well-known, conventional therapies, clients
often ask questions such as, "What is myofascial release and how does it
Muscle provides the greatest bulk of our body's soft tissue. Because all muscle is enveloped by and ingrained with fascia, myofascial release is the term that has been given to the techniques that are used to relieve soft tissue from the abnormal grip of tight fascia.
A key to the success of myofascial release treatments is to keep the pressure and stretch extremely mild. Muscle tissue responds to a relatively firm stretch, but this is not the case with fascia. The collagenous fibers of fascia are extremely tough and resistant to stretch. In fact, it is estimated that fascia has a tensile strength of as much as 2000 pounds per square inch. No wonder it causes pain when it tightens!
Fortunately, it has been shown that under a small amount of pressure applied by a facilitator's hands, fascia will soften and begin to release when the pressure is sustained over time. This can be likened to pulling on a piece of taffy with only a small amount of sustained pressure. Another important aspect of MFR techniques is holding the position long enough. The therapeutic effect will begin to take place after holding a gentle stretch and following the tissue three dimensionally with skilled, sensitive hands.
EFFECTS OF TREATMENT
Frequently, there is soreness for several hours to a day after treatment. The release of tight fascia and its grip on the muscles can result in discomfort because of the body's purging of lactic acid that had been trapped in the muscles. The best remedy for this is drinking lots of water to flush the toxins out of the body. Often remarkable improvement is noted immediately during or after a treatment; other times improvement comes after soreness. Ocasionally, a client will experience new pain in new areas. Some patients have a feeling of lightheadedness or nausea. The client may even have an emotional response, perhaps feeling joy that had been hidden or allowing deep sadness to surface. Regardless of the client's response to treatment, FasciaWorks, Inc. fosters a safe environment for the myriad of possible experiences. All of these are ordinary, healthy reactions from the body when profound, positive changes occur during the release of fascial restrictions.
In general, acute cases will be resolved with a few treatments. The longer the problem has been present, the longer it usually takes to bring lasting results. Many chronic conditions that have developed over a period of years may require two or three treatments a week to obtain optimal results. Once the chronic condition has significantly improved, less frequent treatments can help to maintain the patient's progress. Many patients find that once the pain has subsided, one treatment every few weeks can keep them in good condition.
Experience indicates that very infrequent treatments will often result in fascial tightness creeping back to the level that existed prior to the last treatment. Performance of range of motion and stretching exercise will keep this regression between treatments minimal. It is felt that release of tight tissue is accompanied by release of trapped metabolic waste products in the surrounding tissue and blood stream. We highly recommend that you "flush your system" by drinking a lot of water during the course of your treatments. This will help reduce or eliminate reactions such as nausea or lightheadedness.
If clients have any questions or concerns that arise concerning myofascial release, they should discuss them with the facilitator.
CLIENT BENEFITS OF MYOFASCIAL RELEASE