Connective tissue massage (see also ‘myofacial release) deals with the membranous network beneath the skin. This treatment eases tension, improves range of movement (R.O.M) and helps the body to move with ease and dexterity. This is particularly helpful to the sportsperson but equally advantageous to office workers and indeed the elderly. We all wish for ease of movement and to be able to stretch as far as possible.
Getting under the skin
Whilst most of us are mindful of our skin and the care that is needed for this invaluable protective system for our bodies, few are aware of a ‘second skin’ (fascia) which protects our muscles and provides elasticity. Whereas in deep tissue massage the therapist targets and works with the deeper tissues and into the ‘belly’ of the muscle, connective tissue massage/ myofascial release/ Bowen Therapy works with the more superficial tissues which in turn releases the muscles underneath enabling them to do their job more productively. This treatment in-turn can benefit the circulatory system and the lymphatic system and even the vital organs of the body.
How is it done ?
Having prepared the skin, free of oil, the therapist will simply place their hands on the appropriate limb/part of the body and allow the heat of the hand and body to warm the tissues naturally. After a short while the therapist will us the heal of the hand to allow for a slight increase in pressure. The fascia/connective tissue, when warm, begins to stretch naturally and the body begins to do the work in the most natural way. The professional will us intuition to notice and adhesions or restrictions and then gently roll the skin and its tissues until they sit more happily, enabling the muscles and tendons to stretch more easily.
What are the results?
The client will often feel extremely relaxed during this process and sometimes feel sleepy as the body and mind become very quiet. The body will relax to a level that will kick start the immune system, digestive system and circulatory system.
This is the polar opposite of the ‘fight flight mode that most humans experience in a hurried and stressful lifestyle. It is good to maintain this state of relaxation after treatment for a couple of hours or as long as possible and to drink plenty of water which will assist the removal of toxins via the body’s natural waste system.
A note to the reader
You may conclude that a deeper massage is most likely to be more effective for someone with tired or sore muscles. Why not try it out. It is used by many sports and remedial massage therapists these days and there are many reports to show how it has benefitted many people with a variety of problems.
To find out more or to book a treatment.