The Ups & Downs of Myofascial Release: Lessons From the Sessions

It’s time to talk about pain.  Specifically your pain.  And the fact that its presence in your life is a big problem.

seesawThis pain of yours is why you decided to seek out treatment in the first place.  You are ready to do what it takes to get rid of it.

So you enthusiastically educate yourself.  You have read my blog posts.  You’ve researched John Barnes’ web site.  You are certain that this treatment technique is for you.

And you’re absolutely right.  It is for you.

The first sessions go well.  You gain greater insight into this mysterious world of fascia.  You start to feel on a deeper level.  You feel confident you are on the right path.  You may experience less pain, greater mobility, or an improved ability to relax.  Life is good.  And boy, oh boy, I am the best therapist ever.

But then it happens.  The next several sessions don’t leave you with a sense of relief or confidence that you are going to get better.  Why, you actually feel a little sore.   Emotionally you are little frustrated, depressed, angry or fearful.  Doubts as to whether this will work for you creep in and mess with your head.  Maybe you’re crying – a lot.

You are feeling worse, and this can’t be good, right?

So you come into the clinic and break the bad news to me.   I am no longer the best therapist ever.   You are still hurting, in ways you haven’t experienced in quite a while.

Physically and emotionally you are whipped.

This is usually when I smile and utter something like “perfect“.  Some of you utter something back ( which we won’t publish) ; but most of you just look at me as if I have 3 heads.  What you are feeling is perfectly healthy.  Not everyone goes through this “healing crisis” as John Barnes describes it.  But if it’s happening to you, fear not.  You’re just achieving a greater level of  fascial release.

Here’s the truth about myofascial release:

1.  Everybody heals differently, but rarely is it a steady improvement

2.  You will release not only the structural  tightness but also any  emotional component that is stored within the tissue

3. The fascial restrictions release  progressively from superficial to deep, so multiple treatments in the same area may be necessary

Return of symptoms, whether it be pain or emotional garbage (fear, sadness, anxiety, anger) simply means that we are reaching into the deeper fascial layers.

The superficial layer let go- and you felt better.  But that was just the beginning.  There’s more clearing to be done for you to have lasting relief and a greater sense of what is going on inside that body.

In the body, there are 3 layers of fascia.   As the outermost layer lets go, we can start to penetrate into the deeper layers where your most painful restrictions may be located.  And as we go deeper and deeper into these fascial restrictions, a wide variety of sensations may come up to the surface.

It’s important to remember that these sensations aren’t a problem.  They are a guide that we are in the area that needs to be treated.  Your body is helping us out.  Myofascial release would be a lot harder if the body didn’t give us any indication of what was going on.  So be grateful for the communication.  That’s what it is.

Now about this emotional stuff…..

It’s important to know that a lot of hormones and neuropeptides that are secreted when the body experiences various emotions get stuck in the sticky fascial restrictions.  When we release a restriction, these by products of human emotion get a chance to recirculate in the body before they are flushed out.  No worries.  Let it go.

As the deepest fascial layers start releasing, your pain will ease once again- but on a more permanent note.  Since you rid yourself of the emotional goo stuck in the tissues, you’ll feel mentally clearer, more focused and grounded.

We are here to help you stay on the path.  And in the end, I think you will agree that your journey was “perfect”.

Free up that fascia, take out that emotional garbage, and feel better.

 

 

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