is a form of used to heal and alleviate -related issues and sports injuries. In this article, we’ll explore what a is, share important benefits, common misconceptions, comparison to , possible side effects, and where to find a near me.
What is a ?
is a modality or technique that therapists use to treat individuals who suffer from musculoskeletal issues. So, if you are feeling “stiff” or even “stuck”, it is quite possible that your may suggest a to aid in the release and of the .
One of the most commonly requested styles of is not considered a prescribed modality. In other words, therapists in training do not learn a series of moves prescribed as “ .” In reality, utilizes a variety of strokes to affect the deep tissues and fascia of the . ,
The therapists’ attention is directed toward the supportive and protective layers of fascia – a thin layer that surrounds muscles- to ensure their freedom of movement. The purpose of is to lengthen muscles fibers by loosening the fascial bonds holding them.
Fun Fact: ’s development has been credited to Therese Phimmer, a Canadian doctor though the practice is likely thousands of years old. Her book “Muscles – Your Invisible Bonds” appears to be the first text that talks about a practice.
What are the benefits of a ?
In a prior article on Be Well Bodyworks, we talked about the commonly known benefits of . These included: can assist with. , elimination, a better night’s sleep, and Improved athletic performance, but there are a variety of other ailments that
Note: Many people will claim that will “heal” an issue, but the reality is that a is a tool that can aid the in recovery from many musculoskeletal issues.
Below is a list of other can assist with. -related ailments that
- Rehabilitation of an injury
- Neck and lower back
- Chronic headaches
Be sure to speak with your to determine if this type of treatment would be appropriate for you.
What is the difference between a vs ?
I mentioned earlier that there is no prescribed modality called ? Well, that is true, but there are other styles of where at least one of the goals is to lengthen the muscles. The most commonly confused one is .
is considered a modality of . This is a standardized approach that therapists might take with a client. It has a series of prescribed strokes to be used depending on the primary goal: , increased blood flow, and/or stress relief. According to Web MD, common strokes used in are:
- Effleurage: a smooth, gliding stroke used to relax soft .
- Petrissage: the squeezing, rolling, or kneading that follows effleurage.
- Friction: deep, circular movements that cause layers of . to rub against each other, helping to increase blood flow and break down
- Tapotement: a short, alternating tap done with cupped hands, fingers, or the edge of the hand.
differs in many ways from . With , the focuses on very specific muscular issues, often “trigger points” or “knots” through a more pointed approach. Therapists approaching a session with a , corrective, results focus, or a medical mindset will often utilize Swedish techniques such as friction and tapotement to aid in loosening the fascia. The primary difference between the two is in the speed at which the therapists apply the techniques with .
– Slow and steady applied to specific spots.
– Flowing and continuous that gradually deepens through the session.
In a prior article about , we went over additional differences between and Swedish.
Does a have side effects?
Expert Rule: Communicate with your about any concerns you have. This practice is the number one tool to ensure that the care you are receiving is the best.
Because of the nature of , it is possible to have side effects like at the moment as well as some lingering beyond a day or so. The most common side effect of is a lingering . This is often described as similar to “a good workout” kind of ache. Why does this happen? Due to the nature of , the is often creating micro-tears in the similar to what happens during a workout. These tears loosen up the binds that in-activity or overuse leads to.
You should speak to your doctor before receiving a if you:
- have a history of blood clots or a clotting disorder
- are taking blood thinners
- have a bleeding disorder
- have cancer or are undergoing cancer treatment, such as chemotherapy or radiation
- start feeling
- You are currently undergoing
Pregnant women seeking the relief of a should look for gentler forms than . Prenatal and Swedish massages tend to be better choices.
Want to learn more about the science of ? Check out our introduction article.
Techniques: What to expect.
Since is driven by the goal of lengthening and releasing muscles, the various techniques utilized will vary depending on the severity and need. Three common techniques used are Cross fiber friction, trigger point , and myofascial release. Each of these techniques is focused on freeing up the “stuck” or “locked” through the breakdown of the “bindings” (often fascia) that are holding it locked in the first place. Cross Fiber Friction includes longer strokes that run perpendicular to the fibers, breaking up the fibers more quickly. Trigger point finds those “knots” and with the help of the , slowly releases the “knot” and the sympathetic areas associated with it. Myofascial release aims to release the outer layer of fascia from around the through a “dry” stroke, moving the dermal over the .
How to find a near me?
There are 3 steps that I would suggest when finding a near you.
Step 1: The most common way to find a near you is through search engines such as Google. Search the term “ near me” and you’ll likely have quite a few locations that include work pop up.
Step 2: Choose a few (at least 3-5) locations to call. Bonus tip: Some locations will include their availability on their website as well as articles about their practice. This can help narrow things down before step 3.
Step 3: Call the options you have chosen and ask;
- “I currently have “x” issue and would like to work with a . Do you have any suggestions on what kind of I should get?”
- “I’ve heard that is a method that could benefit my situation. Is there someone at your location who specializes in ?”
- “Would be a good fit for me?”
- “Does the ’s schedule allow for ongoing treatment?”
Bonus Tip: is most effective when used regularly. Many issues will not be “fixed” in the first session, so subsequent sessions will be beneficial.
and can be excellent options for individuals suffering from muscular-related issues. If your goal is to lengthen and free up locked-up , this treatment may be right for you. Other treatments and like can provide a gentler approach to treatment and may also be beneficial. If you would like to learn more about or would like to schedule with us, contact Kelly at 303.652.3533 or schedule a session.