After completing my basic massage training, I went on to study Myofascial Release techniques with John Barnes. This technique is a step beyond massage, which is why other types of practitioners, such as physical therapists, use Myofascial Release with their clients - it can bring lasting benefit. I found that the more I learned about how the body parts work together, the better I was able to actually make a lasting difference in the quality of life for my clients. It would be best to describe my work as a combination of all that I have learned blended together … MFR being one of the main components.
Myofascial Release is a soft tissue therapy for the treatment of skeletal muscle immobility and pain. This alternative medicine therapy aims to relax contracted muscles, improve blood and lymphatic circulation, and stimulate the stretch reflex in muscles.
Fascia is a thin, tough, elastic type of connective tissue that wraps most structures within the human body, including muscle. Fascia supports and protects these structures. Osteopathic theory proposes that this soft tissue can become restricted due to psychogenic disease, overuse, trauma, infectious agents, or inactivity, often resulting in pain, muscle tension, and corresponding diminished blood flow. Although fascia and its corresponding muscle are the main targets of myofascial release, other tissue may be addressed as well, including other connective tissue.
Many health professionals have ignored the importance of an entire physiological system, the fascial system that profoundly influences all other structures of the body. This omission has severely restricted our ability to relieve our symptoms and to heal.
Trauma and inflammatory responses create myofascial restrictions that can produce crushing tensile pressures of approximately 2,000 pounds per square inch on pain sensitive structures that do not show up in any of the standard tests (x-rays, myelograms, MRI's, CAT scans, electromyography, etc.) This enormous pressure acts like a "straightjacket" on muscles, nerves, blood vessels and bones producing the symptoms of pain, headaches and restriction of motion.
The medical approach is to medicate patients so they temporarily are free from pain, but it does nothing about the "straightjacket" of pressure that is causing the pain. This is why so many patients have only temporary results and never seem to get better with traditional therapy.
The John F. Barnes' Myofascial Release Approach® treats the entire myofascial complex eliminating the pressure caused by the restricted myofascial system (the straightjacket) that creates the symptoms. This method of Myofascial Release has been used to treat patients from all over the world when medicine, surgery, traditional therapy or massage did not produce the desired results.
"The fascia forms the largest system in the body
as it is the system that touches all the other systems"
James L. Oschman, PhD