Treatment of the Month: Myofascial Release with Danny Tucker
1. What is Myofascial Release?
Myofascial Release (MFR) is about free restrictions in the whole body. Traditional massage looks at the body as a series of muscles in isolation whereas, in fascial work, the body is seen and treated as one. Everything is connected to everything else, a restriction in one part of your body, say your ankle, could directly or indirectly be causing pain in another part of your body.
Anatomy books like to show all the muscles neatly stacked upon one another but in reality, without the fascial glue, the body couldn’t support its own structure. The intention of myofascial release is to relieve pain, restore function and mobility in the body.
There are two approaches, direct work, also known as structural integration (SI), and indirect work: in direct work the aim is to move the tissue to where it should be by putting the tissue into alignment. Indirect work is more ‘still’ and slow – the aim here is to work with the body to free the restriction using softer techniques and specific stretches.
2. How long is a session?
60 minutes or 90 minutes.
3. What happens in a typical session?
I will use postural assessment to get a visual idea of what is going on in the client’s body. Dialogue is important to find out about my client and what’s going on, their general state of health etc. I focus on the main problem – why are they seeing me? From there I work on a treatment plan and call upon my box of tricks when needed! I work intuitively to find the cause of the client’s pain. I listen to what the client’s body is telling me – no two clients are the same and no two treatments are either. As well as fascial work, I use trigger point therapy, sports massage, cranial sacral techniques and, if booked in advance, hot stone therapy. Heat and fascial work are great companions.
4. What are the benefits of Myofascial Release?
Myofascial Release works by allowing gentle pressure to ease restrictions in the body as opposed to techniques like deep tissue massage which use a more sustained pressure which some clients find uncomfortable. Fascial work encourages the freeing of restrictions and better movement. It works with the body and can benefit people suffering from chronic pain and also people who might be struggling with a recurring injury.
5. How long have you been doing this treatment?
I trained as a massage therapist in 2005 and then as a sports massage therapist in 2007. I trained in Myofascial release in the renowned Jing Institute in 2014 and subsequently qualified as an advanced Myofascial practitioner.
6. Why did you choose to train in this treatment?
I am passionate about massage and as a therapist you want to get results for your clients, you want to stay current and I wanted more tools in my toolbox to help clients. Fascial work has enabled me to completely change how I work and my understanding of how the body works.
7. How many sessions are recommended for me to feel the benefits?
For most problems I would expect you to feel a real difference in 3 sessions – 6 sessions to make a lasting change. I have successfully treated people who came to me with conditions such as lower back pain, fibromyalgia , sciatica, rotator cuff problems, plantar fasciitis , RSI, IBS and headaches. Fascial work is an integral part of every single treatment. A majority of my clients now see me for maintenance work.
8. Can I still have this treatment if I’m pregnant or have any other medical conditions?
Yes. Although I am not trained in pregnancy massage, I can refer people onto trained Myofascial Release therapists who are.
Myofascial Release can be really benefit people who have scars. The thinking now is not to leave scars alone but instead to work on them and I actively teach clients techniques they can use at home to soften their scars.
9. Anything else I should know?
Yes, fascial stretching is a term used to encourage long stretches with clients. Fascial stretching is in fact akin to yoga. Actually 2 person yoga. Gliding into a slow stretch, holding the posture for a few minutes then gliding out of the stretch. This is a perfect accompaniment to Myofascial Release. In a session, I work with clients to really elongate the stretch across the couch. Myofascial Release stretching is specific to the individual, there are no rules!
Danny Tucker offers Myofascial Release, Hot Stone Massage & Sports Massage at Red Hot Yoga. To book your appointment speak to Reception or click here