What is fascia and why must we change it?

Fascia is a tough, continuous piece of collagen, elastin and gelatinous ground substance that forms the connective tissue of the body. Creating a web of tissue, much like an internal “second-skin”, it infuses, separates and connects every structure of the body to every other structure, down to the cellular level. It gives our bodies shape and mobility as well as providing a system for the exchange of information between all systems of the body. One needs to be mobile and fluid for optimal body function. Therefore, malfunction due to trauma, poor posture, overuse, infectious disease or inflammation can bind down the fascia causing abnormal pressures to the structures contained within this tissue. This greatly influences the cell’s ability to respirate, eliminate and oxidate, thus restricting the cell from receiving proper nutrition and initiating waste removal.

Research has shown fascial tissue capable of a tensile strength of over 2,000 pounds per square inch. One can imagine the potential of these fascial restrictions to exert enormous pressures on the body’s structures. Given this information, we can understand how the symptoms of intense and widespread pain and cognitive impairment can be produced; how chronic pain, fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome can manifest; how scoliosis, ADHD, respiratory and heart function can be affected. In essence, the body is being placed in a ever-shrinking “straightjacket” that places crushing pressures on every system and structure in the body.

Imagine someone with these fascial restrictions as they lie down to sleep. The tightness of these tissues does not allow the muscles to fully elongate and relax, causes compression of the joint surfaces, the vertebral discs as well as your nerves and blood vessels. The body is unable to reach the “Delta State” of sleep necessary for rejuvenation. This helps to explain why so many people wake up exhausted with increased pain, headaches, spasms and stiffness. These restrictions worsen over time, becoming a vicious downward cycle.

Unfortunately, restrictions within the fascial system do not show up in any of the current diagnostic tests utilized. There are no pills, herbs or surgeries that will reverse this ever-increasing pressure within the system. The most effective treatment for fascial restrictions is the hands-on therapy known as Myofascial Release. It is a form of gentle stretching of the tissue, with differing directions of stretch as well as pressures utilized by the therapist. By responding to the subtle changes, which occur as the restrictions are released, as well as the feedback from the patient, the therapist is able to work with the patient rather than on the patient. Treatment plans are individualized and are capable of making permanent structural changes, allowing a return to an active, pain-free lifestyle.

Three Part Series on Fascia Research by David Noonan; BA, PTA

Our Approach

Our hands-on approach, utilizing manual therapy and exercise, has helped even the most difficult diagnoses (including fibromyalgia, herniated discs, arthritis, orthopedic injuries and other chronic pain syndromes) to change and heal.

Inner Circle’s hope for the future is to continue to grow, support and provide the optimal physical therapy service in our community.

Our Focus

At Inner Circle, our focus is on you and not your diagnosis. Our hands on approach is non-invasive and gentle, but effective. You are in control of your health, we are here to help! Fill out the form below or reach out to one of our locations today to schedule an appointment!

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