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It’s time to loosen up. Myofascial release therapy is a form of physical therapy that is related to osteopathy. The therapy focuses on releasing muscular tightness and loosening the body to remove the underlying cause of aches and pains – so that you can get on with enjoying life.
Myofascial release therapy helps to relieve the discomfort that comes from restricted fascia in the body. Fascia is the soft connective tissue that surrounds your muscles and organs and helps to keep them in place. It provides lots of support to your body, but can sometimes tighten and become restricted as a result of overuse, trauma, inactivity or infection – leaving you with unpleasant aches and pains that can make life difficult.
At the beginning of your therapy session you will be asked to lie down on a massage table, partially clothed. However, later in the session you may be asked to move around as the practitioner works, including sitting and standing on the table. The practitioner won’t use any oils on your skin as they need to get good traction in order to loosen that fascia up nicely.
During a session of myofascial release therapy, your practitioner will massage your body by applying pressure to your skin with their knuckles and elbows. This helps to stretch the fascia and mobilise it, freeing up even the deepest levels of tissue. Whilst myofascial release is being performed on you, you will feel a stretching sensation on your skin. You may also feel a tingling or burning sensation – don’t worry, this is perfectly normal and means that the therapy is working.
Myofascial release therapy can be helpful in treating chronic neck, back, shoulder and hip pain. It may also be beneficial to those suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome or migraines – good news if you’re fed up with the pain getting you down.
This treatment is suitable for pregnant women – make sure you inform your practitioner of your condition first though so they can tailor the treatment to meet your needs. If you are ill or injured it’s also a good idea to talk it over with a practitioner to make sure the therapy is appropriate for you.
‘Myofascial’ is pronounced ‘myo-fashal’ and is derived from the Latin words ‘myo’ (muscle) and ‘fascia’ (band).