Origins of Fascial Restriction
Things that most people experience as a "normal" part of life can cause fascial restrictions: falls, car accidents, surgical scars and adhesions, childbirth, infections, and prolonged postures. Chronic stress, tension, and emotional trauma also lead to physical tissue restrictions in the body. We may appear to heal from individual accidents but underlying fascial tightness or restrictions can accumulate over time. These restrictions adapt and overlap in a unique individual pattern depending on our life experiences. Symptoms may appear seemingly out of nowhere that have origins in past injuries.
Myofascial Release, the John F. Barnes approach, is so much more than just another physical therapy modality. It is a manual, hands-on treatment that gently and effectively treats the restrictions in your body that are causing your symptoms. Treating the cause of the pain, as well as the symptoms, gives long-lasting results and permanent, structural changes. Myofascial release is safe, holistic, and non-invasive. Conventional medicine doesn’t normally address the fascial layer or the restrictions that are the result of trauma and the cause of our pain. Traditional testing such as MRIs, x-rays, and scans do not show the fascia in detail. Thus, when test results are negative with no explanation for our symptoms, the real answer can often be found in the fascia layer.
Myofascial Release (MFR) is a non-invasive, gentle, and advanced fascial layer manipulation therapy. Many times fascial layer restriction is the source of our pain and is not addressed by traditional medicine.
Fascia is , simply, connective tissue. Picture a large spider web, connecting all around.....now visualize what would happen if you pulled on one strand of the web. The entire web gets pulled from that one strand. Much like a single piece of yarn in a sweater.
What is Fascia?
These are excellent visuals to understand the fascial system. Fascia is 3-dimensional; it should be pliable and fluid; however, when a restriction occurs, it becomes cement-like.
The fascia layer binds, covers and pervades every muscle, organ and cell throughout the body. With movement, it provides stability and support; it suspends organs; gives muscles shape; provides protective sheaths for nerves and blood vessels; and encases the brain and spinal cord in fluid. Furthermore, it permeates throughout these structures down to the cellular level. The very walls of our cells are actually composed of fascia.
The most interesting aspect of the fascial system is that it is not just a system of separate coverings. It is actually one continuous system that exists from head to toe without interruption. In this way, you can begin to see that each part of the body is connected to every other part by the fascia. The "interconnectedness" as described above.
What is MFR?
How do I know it will work for me?
This is where JFB Myofascial Release stands out as the premier treatment for fascial release. Essentially there are two ways of dealing with tightness, pain, and restrictions in your body. One way is to use force and break the tight tissue apart. This can result in the body trying to defend itself against this style of treatment causing limited improvement. Using brute force will bring about a change, but under these circumstances, the change is often temporary and can ultimately lead to further damage and trauma.
The other way of dealing with fascial restrictions is to wait for the tissue to release under gentle pressure in its own time (JFB Myofascial Release). By gently coaxing the body back to fascial alignment this treatment offers longer lasting results and allows for permanent healthy change. Your body intuitively knows what it needs and responds positively in order to eliminate pain and tightness given the proper treatment.
The approach taken by John F. Barnes is different from the other forms of MFR that are still being taught in many schools and practiced by many chiropractors, physical therapists, or other healthcare providers. John F. Barnes approach doesn’t “muscle” through restrictions; it is a manual, hands-on treatment that gently and effectively treats the restrictions in the body that are causing your symptoms. Generally speaking, there are three barriers in a restriction that many non JFB MFR practitioners do not recognize or treat. Not treating or releasing all three fascial layers or barriers will not facilitate true healing. By using the techniques John Barnes teaches, this form of Myofascial Release provides long-lasting results in a safe, holistic, and non-invasive manner.
How is MFR Different from Traditional Physical Therapy?
Pain is regarded as the body's attempt to alert us to a problem-----"something is wrong". Traditional physical therapy attempts to mollify the symptoms with external modalities such as ultrasound, electrical stimulation, or heat and cold. At best, these treatments provide temporary relief; at worst, these modalities distract us from the root of the problem. MFR is the "missing link" in therapy. Additionally, in traditional physical therapy you may see the physical therapist for "only" 10-15 minutes of the entire treatment session. The remainder of your treatment is then carried out by a physical therapy technician or aide. In MFR, the physical therapist provides hands-on therapy for at least 45 minutes.
Our approach to addressing a restricted fascial layer utilizes John F. Barnes’s techniques of Myofascial Release. JFB Myofascial Release offers a gentle, long lasting, whole body approach to getting well and pain free living. This way of comprehensively treating the mental, physical, emotional, and energetic aspects of our being through myofascial release allows for limitless possibilities. Myofascial Release Therapy is the missing link in healthcare and allows our bodies to realize it’s true healing potential.
It is through the patient's history, visual observation of posture, and hands-on assessment the therapist is able to find fascial restrictions. MFR allows us to look at each patient as a unique individual. Our one-on-one therapy sessions are hands-on during which your therapist uses a multitude of MFR techniques and movement therapy. We promote independence through education in proper body mechanics and movement, self-treatment instruction, enhancement of strength, improved flexibility, and postural correction and awareness. It is important to understand the concept of interconnectedness in myofascial release (MFR). Not only the interconnectedness of the physical body via the fascial system, but the interconnectedness of the mind, body, and spirit as well.