By| October 8, 2013
Massage techniques are used to induce relaxation, reduce muscle spasm, relieve tension and tightness from muscles, helps clear muscles of lactic acid that builds up during exercise, increases range of motion, stimulates the immune system by increasing blood flow and lymph drainage which aids in the repair of painful, tense, damaged muscles and tendons. Benefits of massage also include improving muscle tone and delaying muscle atrophy resulting from inactivity. Deep massage can separate fascial fibres, and prevent the formation of adhesions and helps reduction of inflammation and oedema in joints and soft tissue.
Osteopaths use massage techniques which works through the connective tissue layers from skin through to deep muscle, the Osteopath will be able to judge the depth required to achieve the greatest effect. Osteopaths combine cross fibre stretching with massage techniques to achieve greater effectiveness. Sometimes the techniques can be uncomfortable if the tissues are very tight or there is scar tissue present, but the patient usually experiences relief as the tissue relaxes.
There are a wide variety of soft tissue techniques that osteopaths use, including massage (light or firm pressure), cross-fibre muscle kneading and myo-fascial release. What these techniques all have in common is the aim to relax or stretch out the muscles and tendons and ligaments (the soft tissues). This can be a very important part of the treatment process with tension in the muscles contributing significantly to pain and stiffness in many patients.
Osteopaths also use fascial release techniques. Fascia is a continuous sheet of connective tissue from our head to our toes. It wraps around muscles, bones, viscera (organs), nerves and blood vessels . It offers support and spaces for all fluids of the body and the nerves to travel through. Trauma, inflammatory conditions and poor posture can cause fascia to become distorted and cause malfunction in any of the structures it surrounds.
Whether your need is to have a moment of relaxation, reduce muscle tension or attain relief from chronic pain, an osteopathic massage can enhance your overall sense of emotional and physical well-being as well as your quality of life.
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