The first visit will start with me taking a comprehensive history to understand the problems you are experiencing and allow me to explain how I can help.Each massage takes a holistic approach and starts with amma (a type of massage, performed over the towel) to start to relax you. Then I will start to work on the specific area causing you concern, using myofascial release techniques, followed by some deep tissue work and trigger point therapy, ending with further massage and stretching.
What is myofascial release?
Myofascial release (MFR) is a technique that has recently gained in popularity as scientists begin to understand the body and the role fascia plays. The fascia is a layer of connective tissue that runs continuously throughout the body. The most visible place to see it is just under the skin, but it is everywhere, surrounding muscles and organs. Restrictions in the fascia caused by trauma (injury) and stress can be felt throughout the body.
Imagine a knot at the bottom of your t-shirt (this represents a restriction in the fascia) , and then look at the rest of your t-shirt - it is pulling at the top too. It is a good analogy of the way your fascia is all connected and why the pain in your shoulder may be caused my a problem further down your back, and why I may work on those areas too.
MFR is a very static technique and mainly involves holding a stretch to encourage the fascia to move. Each stretch can be held for 3 - 5 mins.
What is trigger point therapy?
Trigger points are areas of pain within a muscle that also cause referred pain elsewhere in the body. The pattern of pain caused by trigger points in certain muscle is very predictable, hence if you are being treated for headaches, depending on the type of headache you expereince I would look at specific muscles in the neck and upper shoulders.
Much of the original research into trigger points was conducted by Janet Travell MD who was John F Kennedys personal doctor.
Trigger point therapy is very useful for treating a variety of conditions, I personally have been treated to help with my migraines and headaches. I went from having a headache every day and a migraine every 7 - 10 days to a migraine maybe every 2 - 3 months (then I know its time for a treatment!).
It involves holding a muscle and carefully finding the areas within it that are tender and applying gently pressure to alleviate the tenderness.
In clinical massage it is the combined approach of using all these techniques together that seems to get the 'best' results.
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