Let's Begin with learning about Fascia.....
Q: What is Fascia?
A: Fascia is a fluid "web" of highly specialized connective tissue which spans our body three-dimensionally, uninterrupted from head to toe. Fascia surrounds, supports, and infuses with every structure of the body. It connects bone to bone, muscle to muscle, organ to organ, nerve to nerve, blood vessel to blood vessel. It is able to withstand tremendous internal (hydrostatic) and external (gravity, pressure) forces, with the tensile strength to withstand 2000 pounds per square inch of pressure! That's the strength of a radial tire! Imagine that hanging around your neck.
Q: What is a Myofascial Restriction?
In a healthy body, fascia is very fluid. Over time when inflammation occurs, the ground substance of the fascia begins to dry out. The collagen fibers begin to thicken and harden by shortening and "knitting" themselves together by laying down fiber after reinforceing fiber. It acts similar to a Chinese finger cuff , which contracts tighter as you pull your fingers apart. The elastin fibers become trapped and shortened within the collagen fiber knots, and can no longer expand and contract. This is how myofascial restrictions are formed, including scar tissue.
Q: How do Myofascial Restrictions Occur?
A: Over time your body has developed its own unique pattern of myofascial restrictions. Injuries due to accidents, surgeries, illness, posture and stress can cause myofascial restrictions.
Our bodies respond to immediate traumatic events (illness, injury, surgery, shock) by mounting an inflammatory response. This inflammatory response is meant to be short term in duration as we seek medical care to address the issue(s). However, prolonged inflammatory response tends to be cumulative, and results in myofascial restrictions. These myofascial restrictions are often experienced as "symptoms", such as illness (fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome), chronic pain (headache, TMJ, neck/back/leg pain, etc.), or other conditions such as restless leg syndrome, carpal tunnel syndrome, plantar fascitis, vertigo, tinnitus, among many.
Q: How are Myofascial restrictions addressed?
A: Myofascial Release addresses these fascial restrictions using gentle, sustained pressure into the tissue over time, which helps to re-liquify and restore elasticity, strength and health to the tissues, or fascia...
- Sustained pressure into the tissue helps to soften the ground substance.
- Sustained stretch of the tissue is gently applied to elongate collagen and elastin fibers.
- Sustained compression is also used to facilitate more resistant areas to soften.
Q: How does MFR compare to other therapies?
A: Myofacial release addresses the health and functional ability of the fascial system, an incredible 3-dimentional network of tissue which connects the body, head to toe, three-dimensionally. Working with this expansive, integral system of the body makes actual permanent changes toward vastly improved posture, alignment and function, down to the cellular level. These changes tend to "hold" as they occur, so that as you continue to receive MFR treatment, you will feel the positive changes in your body, feel the increasing proficiency in your ability to self treat, and feel the decreasing need for MFR treatment sessions!
Should you choose to participate in other forms of therapy, MFR actually enables your body to better receive and benefit from other types of therapy (such as chiropractic, physical therapy, massage, acupuncture, energy work, healing touch, etc). It also greatly enhances your ability to perform and benefit from many forms of exercise such as Yoga, Tai Chi, aerobics, weight training and sports.
Each session includes:
- Assessment of areas of progress, areas of continued need and a brief look at standing postural alignment.
- Address the symptoms you may be experiencing (such as pain, numbness, tingling, aching, burning, etc.), as well as to address the cause of these symptoms.
- Frequency and duration of treatment is based upon individual need and progress.