Myofascial Release may not be something you hear about everyday. But it helps relieve even the most mundane of body pains.
Even as a quick fix, it can offer relief for anything from muscle soreness to mobility issues. In fact, tools like the percussion massager are becoming popular for self-applications at home or on the go.
So what benefits does Myofascial Release actually offer and how? Follow along to find out.
As the name might suggest, Myofascial Release focuses on your fascia – the connective tissue that envelops your muscles. It promotes pain relief and improves your range of motion.
It’s an excellent treatment for back problems, chronic fatigue syndrome, carpal tunnel syndrome, and arthritis – to name a few. This makes it a go-to for sports recovery and general therapy alike.
Myofascial release targets stiff spots or “trigger points”. Each of these trigger points receives a period of sustained pressure. Simultaneously, the muscles around the trigger point may also be subject to a few stretching exercises.
The fascinating part is that the trigger points won’t be where all the soreness is. That’s because, generally, pain also occurs as a consequence of obstructions elsewhere. We’ll probe more into that in a while.
The goal of Myofascial Release is to make your muscles feel less sore and more capable of movement. And along the way, it can also trigger other positive changes in your body.
Muscle knots are tiny clumps of persistent muscle tension that pop up after you misuse or overwork certain muscles. Myofascial Release applies the right kind of pressure for long enough to release the muscle tightness. And, along with instant pain relief, what usually follows is a chain reaction.
Your fasciae expand and contract with your muscles. And it’s easy for this fabric of collagen and sensory receptors to essentially crumple – and get stuck that way.
Why? Because something, usually a muscle knot, is pinning it down in an awkward position. This leads to uneven tension across your fascia, as your muscles attempt their usual movements. As a result, this lopsided strain is bound to feel sore.
This is where the “release” part actually happens. With your fasciae no longer obstructed by any knots or stiffness, they get their original shape and elasticity back. This translates to more comfortable and unrestricted movements.
The aforementioned muscle knots also tend to block lymphatic pathways. And that can cause bottlenecks in some of your body’s regulatory processes.
The lymphatic system’s main role is to facilitate your body’s disposal of waste and toxins. And it does so with a network that sits right under your muscles. Therefore, as you eliminate unnecessary muscle tension, you also detoxify more efficiently.
A quick and proven way to dislodge those trigger points is with the use of a deep tissue massage gun. All you need to know is where to find these problem areas. And after that, the device does the rest of the work for you.
A proper deep tissue massage gun comes with different attachment heads. Generally speaking, an application that requires such intensity and precision calls for a fork or bullet attachment. But you can always try other attachments to see what you’re most comfortable with.
Once you’re all set, here’s how to use it:
- Hover the device around your target muscle group to ease general soreness and tension. Remember to avoid bone at all times.
- Once you identify where the painful tightness persists, feel free to go deeper into it.
- For 15 to 30 seconds, apply the device as firmly as your comfort allows.
It’s important to note that Myofascial Release isn’t exactly delicate. And its intensity may not be suited for certain conditions. So always be mindful – especially when doing this by yourself.
For starters, Myofascial Release only works on muscle tissues. This means you should avoid joints and other small ligaments that could tear under this type of pressure. And since the procedure involves stretches, hypermobile joints may also complicate things indirectly.
Pregnancy and conditions like cancer, osteoporosis, and bone fractures also pose significant risks of collateral damage. And lastly, Myofascial Release might also clash with any circulatory problems you might have.
Myofascial Release is a fairly straightforward way to make anyone’s life a little easier. But while advanced tools exist to do the job, it takes some understanding to know how it should work.
Should you have any doubts over its process and suitability, always seek medical advice. Your doctor would know what you need most, and how to get it.