The myofascial (MF) system of our body is like the foundation of a home. This system exists around each muscle fibers and groups which surround and link our muscles and organs. This requires a whole body approach through which gentle to moderate sustained pressure is applied. MFR techniques incorporate longer holds to stretch fascial restrictions and decompress the system. Pressure can be light to very deep.
This type of therapy looks to restore normal mobility patterns of the organs. Injuries, surgeries, or inflammatory diseases can all limit the movement pattern of our organs and compromise their ability to function normally. Due to the interconnectedness of the system that supports and suspends the organs, we can develop disorders such as mid and lower back pain, shoulder pain, limited spinal mobility, altered ability to take a full breath, abnormal digestion, which can lead to abnormal bowel and bladder function, difficulty conceiving, abnormal menstrual cycles. Visceral mobilization assess the restrictions, restores normal movement patterns and brings you back to improved and hopefully normal organ function.
Patients who only tolerate very light pressure often respond well to this type of therapy. People with whiplash, head trauma, nervous system disorders, and babies also respond very well. CST releases tensions deep in the body to improve whole-body health and performance. Using a very gentle touch, practitioners release restrictions in the soft tissues that surround the central nervous system. This kind of therapy is often used as a preventive health measure for its ability to bolster resistance to disease. (www.upledger.com for more info)
In my experience, this is the most overlooked and least understood system in the body (with the exception of serious ailments such as breast cancer). Lymph drainage is accomplished using \ light pressure to move the lymph fluid. The following is from Kim Ann Zimmermann, Live Science Contributor/February 20, 2018:
The Lymphatic System: Facts, Functions and Diseases.
“The lymphatic system is a network of tissues and organs that help rid the body of toxins, waste and other unwanted materials. The primary function of the lymphatic system is to transport lymph, a fluid containing infection-fighting white blood cells, throughout the body”.
“The lymphatic system primarily consists of lymphatic vessels, which are similar to the circulatory system's veins and capillaries, The vessels are connected to lymph nodes, where the lymph is filtered, The tonsils, adenoids, spleen and thymus are all part of the lymphatic system”.
When this system is challenged, fluid can build up and our ability to eliminate it and removing associated toxins is compromised. Lymph drainage looks to identify the areas that have been compromised and help restore the normal flow. Severe fluid build up following cancer surgery to remove lymph nodes is often treated with lymph drainage and compressive garments but what about the compression in the system and the altered flow in back, abdominal and pelvic patients? The series of lymph nodes deep in the abdomen must be compromised with problems in this area since the pressure is so altered and so this should be evaluated and treated when appropriate.
This tape was developed in the 1970’s by Dr Kase in Japan. While not a long term solution, it works quickly to heal certain acute or recent injuries. There are many ways to apply kinesio tape that are easy on the skin and allow for movement. With little training, you too can learn how to do this. This tape is not usually used long term. If you aren’t getting better, something is missing.
Muscle Energy Technique
Another gentle technique that uses a isometric contraction to relax and lengthen the muscles and a great way to approach painful spams and improve the range of motion. A submaximal contraction is followed by muscle stretching, which is repeated until the muscle is fully lengthened. For example: let’s say you are having pain in your bicep and cannot fully extend your elbow joint. The arm would be flexed to a comfortable yet slightly stretched position. You would then give a 20% effort to flex the elbow against me while I hold the stretched position, contracting for a full 10 seconds. After relaxing, the arm would then be stretched slightly and this repeated until your arm is straight. This can really help reduce pain in acute injuries.
The graded force of passive movement of the joint using pressure of the hands to glide the joint into different positions, also there can be decompression of the joint and stretching the joint capsule. Used to improve range of motion and reduce pain. The technique is one I use on nearly all my patients to help establish normal joint motion lost with injuries.