Fascia is the new buzz word in Bodywork and Yoga now, and rightly so… And you may have heard of myofascial release (myo = muscle)
Scientists used to think fascia was just another layer of tissue under the skin and around the organs, muscles, they didn’t credit it with any great significance. But now we know so much more about it, and it’s role in our physical and mental wellness.
So it appears that we have a fascial matrix which works in 3D and gives us our structural intergrity – or tensegrity (see what they did there….)
The fascial web is a body wide web of connective tissue made up of collagen and elastin fibres which are held in a fluid ground substance. It wraps around the individual muscle fibers, bundles of muscles fibers, around muscles themselves, and around groups of muscles. So it’s involved in pretty much any structure in the body – muscles, organs, glands, and neurovascular bundles. Everything is held within this matrix, and if any piece of it is pulled out of shape, weakened or tightened , there is a ripple effect throughout the entire system. Left untreated this can end up as tension, chronic pain and incorrect posture.
Neuroscience is getting in on the act too
We have always worked on the model of 5 senses – sight, smell, hearing, taste and touch….. well it now appears we have six, number 6 being the fascia! It is our largest organ of communication. The nervous system is embedded within it, and it is listening and responding in every moment. It is highly sensitized (10x more than muscle) It responds to movement and mood. Stress is particulary detrimental to our fascia, causing tension and inflammation. Inflammation can lead to disease. So how we move and how we think has a great effect on the fascia, and ultimately our health.
With this new understanding of the role of fascia to our health and wellbeing, we can design treatments and Yoga practices that can improve our awareness and help to reshape and rewire our fascia.
Slow mindful movement to develop our awareness of breath and body
Massage therapies addressing stress
All will help bring a more relaxed and aware state
Our goal here is to calm the nervous system, to activate the parasympathetic (rest and digest) nervous system response. To learn how to deal with the stresses of modern living.
Once we understand ways to do this, we are able to help ourselves in many ways.
The method of Myo-fascial Release I practice uses slow and sustained pressure to sink into and create space, relaxation and re organisation of the tissues. I also love rocking and rebounding which is hugely relaxing!
You play a big part in this therapy also as you are encouraged to take your attention deep inside to notice sensations and feelings as they arise – this is so beneficial for you and your nervous system! The whole MFR approach feels wonderful to receive and is particularly useful to bring posture into alignment and release deeply held tensions. It can be added in to any of the therapies I offer as and when needed, or can be used as a stand alone therapy.
I look forward to working with you soon!