Myofacial Release / Soft Tissue Mobilisation
Soft tissue mobilisation is a form of manual therapy somewhat similar to, but more specific than, therapeutic massage and is often also referred to as a form of myofascial release. All Chiropractors and Physiotherapists at Spinal and Sports Care are well educated concerning soft tissue mobilisations and most have been trained in at least a few different forms of these type of techniques.
Soft tissue mobilisation can either be performed manually (with the hands such as Active Muscle Release Therapies) or performed with various types of instruments (instrument assisted soft tissue mobilisation such as in Graston Technique®).
Active Release Muscle Release is a movement-based massage technique. The practitioner uses his or her hands to evaluate the texture, tightness and movement of muscles, fascia, tendons, ligaments and nerves. Abnormal tissues are treated by combining precisely directed tension with very specific patient movements.
Graston Technique® is an innovative, patented form of instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilisation that enables clinicians to effectively break down scar tissue and fascial restrictions. The technique utilises specially designed instruments to specifically detect and effectively treat areas exhibiting soft tissue scar tissue or chronic inflammation.
Currently, there is little, if any, credible evidence that states that instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilisation (IASTM) is more effective than manual soft tissue mobilisation but instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilisation is less physically demanding on the physical therapist.
Soft tissue mobilisation (either manual or instrument assisted) is an effective technique to promote healing of certain type of musculoskeletal injuries when performed by a skilled clinician but the technique is variable. Much like therapeutic massage, soft tissue mobilisation can improve blood flow, and increase the viscoelasticity/length of tissue. Despite its variability, soft tissue mobilisation techniques are innately more specific than therapeutic massage but not as specific as dry needling for certain soft tissue dysfunctions including but not limited to trigger points.