The traditional medical approach is to fix the body or control/remove the symptoms that have developed over the years.
Myofascial release (MFR) is an approach that helps us to remove the restrictions so the natural healing abilities of our system can take place and bring the body to better states of hemostasis (balance) or healing.
One of the differences that John Barnes is teaching his students is to use mindfulness, or consciousness when treating clients. Most of the time during the sessions silence is recommended. Quiet mind is encouraged so the attention and focus of both the therapist and the client can be on the client’s entire body and its connections.
For a good overview of myofascial release and my role as an MFR therapist view this video "What is Myofascial Release?"
One of the characteristics of fascia is that it is a hydrophilic system, meaning “water- loving”. When parts of the fascia are tight, restricted or chronically injured they are dehydrated, tight and stiff.
As your therapist, with Myofascial Release I hold pressure and apply shear force to the tissue for at least 5 minutes. Once home, in self therapy, you are not expected to have the experience to apply shear force, but you still can have a significant impact on your own progress. Using a 4" soft ball, foam roll or your own hands, bring the pressure to the boundary of movement. Then, and this is the hardest part, find a place of stillness in your heart and hold that pressure for 5 minutes or more. If the tissue softens you are successful.
5 minutes allows the “solid” and tight tissue to melt and become more like a fluid gel. That change in a tissue quality enables clients to feel lighter and more open after the session, eliminating the pain and pressure from the restricted area.
After that minimum of 5 min of sustained pressure, the body also releases a natural compound called Interleukin 8, a natural anti-inflammatory agent that our body produces.
It is most important to understand that we are NOT trying to force the body to “release”. We are attuned to the body and allow it to soften and release on its own, without using force.
Myofascial Release is all about healing and letting go of trying, forcing, or fighting. It is a powerful and safe way of healing the physical body, mind and associated emotions.
Myofascial Release helps us to start listening to our body which is always trying to communicate with us, protect and heal us. Many times it is hard to hear with the external chaos, overstimulation, rationalization, and living with too much on our mind.
The fascial voice is subtle and gentle - are you taking time to listen to your body?
For more information or to schedule the appointment, contact me at 708-525-4640
Schedule an appointment and we will walk you through how to best use myofascial release to improve your quality of life.
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