There’s nothing quite like a good stretch, and that’s exactly why stretch therapy is becoming one of the most favored methods of self-care. Fascial stretch therapy is a safe way to improve flexibility, but it also helps with relaxation and strengthening of muscles. It’s suitable for people of all ages and is an ideal way to increase your athletic performance or fitness regime.
So, what exactly is fascia stretch therapy and how can it help you?
What is Fascial Stretch Therapy?
First, let’s define the fascia. The fascia is the connective tissue that runs throughout your body, basically allowing it to work. It surrounds the almost 650 muscles in our body, as well as every bone, tendon, ligament, nerve and organ.
Fascia is made up two fibers: collagen and elastin. The big difference between collagen and elastin is stiffness. Both fibers stretch, but elastin will stretch farther before breaking than collagen. The collagen and elastin of fascia exist on a substrate called ground substance. Ground substance is ”snot”- like material. It is the fluid medium of fascia. The most prevalent component of ground substance is water. Water is what allows the fascia to slide across other fascia. Thus, the less water there is in the ground substance; the stickier fascia becomes. Fascia plays a critical role in the wellness of the body. If we do not drink enough water, then our fascia becomes dense and thick, just like dried-out glue, and then we are more susceptible to injury due to loss of flexibility, particularly if we don’t stretch enough.
If your fascia isn’t working effectively, it can lead to a number of things, including:
- Degenerative joint diseases
- Muscle tightness
- Headaches (due to increasing nervous tissue tone)
- Increased scar tissue
- Decreased energy
- Lower blood flow levels
Fascial stretch therapy is basically assisted stretching with a trained practitioner who knows all about stretching techniques and their impact on the anatomy and your body’s physiology. It’s designed to target all of those things, with stretching methods that are designed to improve your strength and mobility. It’s pain-free, and usually performed with you lying down on a massage table. Best of all, it provides instant results!
Benefits Of Fascial Stretch Therapy
Pain Management: If your fascia isn’t operating efficiently, it can lead to pain throughout your body. The tightness can impact your posture and the way your muscles work, increasing your chances of injury and unwanted pain. An increase in flexibility, thanks to fascial stretch therapy, helps relieve these stresses.
Circulation Improvement: Fascial stretch therapy improves blood flow, which in turn helps to reduce the amount of tension in your muscles. It is excellent for recovering from exercise or athletic events, and helps to remove toxins, giving you more energy and allowing more oxygen into your body.
Other benefits include muscular balance, increased flexibility, improved posture, better muscle function, decreased decompression in joints, increased fitness and athletic performance and enhanced strength. Stretch therapy has also been known to reduce the effects of aging and to have a positive impact on weight loss (by allowing more range of motion during exercise).
What To Expect
When you book in for stretch therapy, you’ll find that it starts off similar to massage. First, you’ll complete a form with details of your medical history, then a short assessment. Following this, you’ll lie down on a massage table, and your therapist will start to move your body, focusing on particular muscles and connective tissue surrounding your joints.
You don’t need to move, or do anything, and it is best if you don’t. Your massage therapist will do that for you, while you simply lie back and relax.
If you want to find out more or to book a session, get in touch today.