Myofascial release (my-o-FASH-e-ulor release or MFR) is a manual -soft tissue therapy often used in medical massage, for the treatment of skeletal muscular immobility and pain. This is a complementary, not an alternative medical therapy. It aims to release fascia restrictions and relax contracted muscles, improve blood and lymphatic circulation, and stimulate the stretch reflex in muscles. For more information, John Barnes’ Myofascial Release.
Historically, is promulgated concept by Andrew Taylor Still, founder of osteopathic medicine and his early students. The exact phrase “myofascial release” was coined in the 1960s by Dr. Robert Ward, an osteopath physician who studied with Dr Ida Rolf, PhD, the originator of Rolfing. Robert Ward, along with physical therapist John Barnes, are considered the two primary founders of Myofascial Release.
Dr. Robert Ward, and John Barnes, physical therapist coined the term “Myofascial Release.” It is a manual massage system that evaluates and resolves fascia tensions by using osteopathic methods, craniosacral therapy, structural integration, and physical therapy exercises.
The technique focuses on pain, that is believed to arise from restricted, tensions within the myofascial tissues — the tough connective tissue that wraps, connects and supports your muscles and body’s posture and functioning.
Theoretically, myofascial pain differs from other types of pain, because it originates in “trigger points,” which are related to stiff, anchored down areas within the myofascial tissue. These areas, are thought to restrict muscle and joint movements, which contributes to widespread muscle pain. Fibromyalgia.
During myofascial release therapy, the therapist locates myofascial tensions areas that feel stiff and fixed, instead of elastic and movable under light manual pressure. Focused manual pressure and stretching used in myofascial release therapy loosen up restricted movement, leading indirect release of pain.
The Many studies have found that medical massage, myofascial release, craniosacral therapy, chiropractic and ortho-bionomy, and similar manual therapies work well in conjunction with your medical doctor’s treatment plan, because they are effective manual therapies for reducing pain by addressing the sources of pain and dysfunction. Few studies, however, have tested these therapies specifically, partly because the exact elements, and applications of manual therapy vary from therapist to therapist.
If you’ve been told that myofascial release therapy may be helpful for your headache, shoulder, wrist and back pain, talk to me about booking your appointment.
Claude Barrett, LMT, CST License Number mt004572.
Claude is a Member of the Associated Bodywork & Massage Professionals (ABMP)); Medallion Member of the International Association of Healthcare Practitioners (IAHP); Certified Upledger Institute CranioSacral Therapist and an Graduate in Advanced Clinical and Holistic Applications of Massage Therapy, from the Institute of Natural Healing Science, (INHS).
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…By Claude Barrett, LMT, CST.