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Fascia; What is it and how does it work?

November 5, 2017

Fascia is a specialised system of the body that has an appearance similar to a spider's web. Fascia is densely woven, covering, penetrating and interconnecting every muscle, bone, nerve, artery and vein, as well as, all of our internal organs including the heart, lungs, brain and spinal cord. The most interesting aspect of the fascial system is that it is not just a system of separate coverings. It is actually one continuous structure, 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 fascial system.


Trauma, inflammation, and/or surgical procedures create restrictions in fascia that can cause pain and discomfort. A high percentage of people suffering with pain and/or lack of motion more than likely to be having fascial problems.



Fascia plays an important role in the support and function of our bodies, since it surrounds, invests and attaches to all structures. In its normal healthy state, the fascia is relaxed. It has the ability to stretch and move without restriction. When a person experiences physical or emotional trauma, scarring, or inflammation, however, the fascia loses its pliability. It becomes tight, restricted, and a source of tension to the rest of the body. So, a tightness in one part of the body may cause pain and discomfort in another part of the body. Trauma, such as a fall, car accident, whiplash, surgery or just habitual poor posture and repetitive activities, has a cumulative effect on the body. These traumas cause changes in the fascial system and will influence comfort and function of our body. Fascial restrictions can cause all kinds of symptoms producing pain, headaches or reduced range of motion. Fascial restrictions affect our flexibility and stability, and are a determining factor in our ability to withstand stress and perform daily activities.


Treatment to reduce these restrictions are through having Myofascial Release. This is a specialist treatment that helps the restriction 'unwind'. Fascial or myofascial unwinding is a process where a client's tissues undergoe a spontaneous reaction in response to the therapist’s touch. It can be induced by using specific techniques that encourage a client’s body to move into areas of ease, mostly by performing a sustained stretch of the fascia. This 'unwinding' has become a popular technique in massage therapy, but its mechanism is not well understood. In the absence of a scientific explanation or hypothesis of the mechanism of action, it can be interpreted as “mystical.





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