Myofascial Release

What is Myofascial Release?

Myofascial Release is a form of soft tissue therapy. Myo means of or relating to muscle and fascia is the tissue that holds muscles together and forms the bridge between muscles creating support for our entire body. The fascia allows forces to be transferred from one muscle to another and creates movement at the joints while still allowing suppleness and mobility.

This approach is used to treat adhesions, scar tissue, inflammation and increased density in both the muscles and the fascia. These fascial changes are often felt by the chiropractor as increased density of the muscle and are usually tender to touch. This is called a trigger point. These problems are often caused by daily postural strain and poor movement patterns or various types of injury. It can last indefinitely without treatment and will cause the body to compromise in other muscles and joints.

These trigger points and dense muscles can be treated with myofascial therapy which can include:

Graston (tool assisted), Active release technique (deep massage with movement and or stretching), deep manual fascial manipulation and sometimes a combination of the above. Here at Amity Chiropractic we term all the above approaches as Advanced Myofascial technique (AMT)

For a visual appreciation, go to YouTube and search "Fuzz Speech". The "fuzz" shown in the video is actual fascia from a human boy.

How does myofascial treatment work?

The various types of fascial manipulation act on the dense tissue to physically break up the adhesions, increase blood flow to the tissue and restore motion of the muscle and joints of the region. It is important to treat the primary point responsible for the dysfunction and also treat the areas of postural compensations. (For additional information you can google search Luigi Stecco re: Fascial Manipulation)

The technique of treatment is important because the proper location, time on each point and depth of treatment needs to be suitable to get results. In my opinion the treatment is usually painful (patients often say it's a "Good Hurt") in order to achieve results. Also if the point is not painful then it is not likely an important point.

What areas should be treated?

The locations of treatment are determined by understanding the individuals pain, injury history and on examination checking areas that we have learned through experience to potentially be involved.

Who would benefit from Myofascial Treatment?

The individuals that need this type of treatment usually have:

  • Any increase in muscle tension, pain and/or limited mobility in joints or muscles anywhere in the body ie. spine, arms, legs, shoulders, knees, jaw and head.
  • Individuals who are too fragile to undergo classic chiropractic manipulation usually benefit from this type of treatment along with stretching and immobilizing of joints.
  • Virtually just about anyone would get some benefit from this type of myofascial therapy but some people need it more than others.

What are common conditions that benefit?

  • Any sprain or strain
  • Chronic stiffness
  • Poor posture
  • Spinal pain and injury ie. Whiplash
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Plantar fasciitis
  • Tennis elbow
  • Tendonitis in all regions
  • Headaches
  • TMJ syndrome
  • Shoulder and hip pain and injury
  • All serious athletes