Myofascial Release (MFR) is a safe, gentle, highly effective form of manual therapy that is likely different from other forms of massage or bodywork you may have experienced. ‘Myo’ means ‘muscle’, and while we do work with the muscles, what distinguishes this modality is its focus on the fascia, or connective tissue. Moderate, direct pressure with sustained stretch is applied to areas of the body where restrictions are felt – areas that may feel tight, tender, or hot. These compressions and stretches are typically held for periods of 2-5 minutes to allow sufficient time for the fascia to begin to elongate and restrictions to ease, thus relieving pressure on pain-sensitive areas. Many people report that they find this work extremely relaxing and that they feel more connected to their body after treatment. Results from an MFR session typically last longer than those from traditional massage therapy.
Fascia is a dense connective tissue that runs contiguously throughout the body in a three-dimensional web fashion. Not only does it help connect muscle to bone, and bone to bone, but it also holds internal organs in place and serves as a support structure for the entire body. It surrounds muscles, bones, and organs, all the way down to the cellular level. There is also a superficial layer of fascia just below the skin. It has been found that fascia can exert up to 2000 pounds per square inch of pressure, which is stronger than steel! Is it any wonder that restrictions in the fascia might cause painful symptoms in muscles, nerves and other pain-sensitive structures in your body? There are many reasons that fascial restrictions occur, but some common possibilities include trauma, inflammation, scar tissue, postural misalignment, and habitual postural holding or bracing patterns.
If you would like to give Myofascial Release therapy a try, please plan to wear clothes that will allow you to be “comfortably undressed” in the treatment room. For women this might mean a sports bra and loose-fitting shorts, or bra and underwear. For men, boxers, underwear, or loose-fitting athletic shorts are best.
In order for me to be able to sink down to the proper depth barrier and maintain my pressure and stretch, please refrain from using body lotion or other moisturizing products prior to your appointment.