What is Myofascial Release?
Myofascial release is a type of manual therapy that corrects muscular and soft tissue problems involving muscles, nerves, tendons, ligaments and connective tissue. Myofascial release is based on scientific evidence that soft tissues can develop adhesions within, around and between them after acute injuries, repetitive injuries and chronic irritations. Adhesions alter the motion of muscles and joints and can compress nerves, resulting in a wide variety of symptoms such as pain, poor mobility of the muscle, joint or body area, decreased athletic performance and most importantly, a continuation of the cumulative injury cycle.
Developed to correct the Cumulative Injury Cycle, the goal of Myofascial release is to:
Restore free and unimpeded motion of all soft tissue
Release entrapped nerves, vasculature and lymphatics
Re-establish optimal soft tissue texture and function.
What is cumulative trauma?
If you set a pendulum in motion, you do not have to keep pushing it to keep it moving, it continues to move on its own. Our bodies respond in much the same way. That is why we still have pain even after the stress is removed. The cycle can be started in three ways: Acute Injury, Repetitive Injury or Constant Pressure/Tension. Left uncorrected, they lead to inflammation, adhesions, fibrosis, scar tissue, weak and tense tissues and decreased circulation all in a specific progression call the Cumulative Injury Cycle (CIC).
How do adhesions and scar tissue form?
Compromise of soft tissue occurs in two ways. There is acute injury, a blow, pull or strain of the muscle, tendon or ligament, or the repetitive overuse injury such as improper posture, faulty biomechanics, compensation injuries and repetitive motion. This causes a decreased blood supply to the involved tissue producing scar tissue to protect them from further damage.
What are the benefits of myofascial release?
Shorter treatment times with improved outcomes for chronic lower back problems, chronic sciatic cases, carpal tunnel syndrome, TMJ dysfunction, chronic neck stiffness, common tendonitis complaints such as tennis elbow, golfer’s elbow, shin splints, knee pain, kneecap tracking problems, rotator cuff and adhesive capsulitis conditions. Many of these cases resolve quickly.
What is the treatment like?
Myofascial release is noninvasive, very safe, has virtually no side effects and comes with a record of outstanding results. Treatments can be uncomfortable during the movement phases as the scar tissue or adhesions are broken up. The discomfort is temporary and subsides almost immediately after the treatment. It is common to feel a duplication of your symptoms during the treatment, a good indication that the problem has been identified. Chiropractic adjustments are done in addition to myofascial release to increase the effectiveness of the treatment. Patients report that “it’s a good hurt”.