Fix your fascia and mobility, and get back to living!
We sat down with La Jolla Sports Club trainer and Fascial Stretch Therapist, Matt Pippin, to answer members’ questions on Fascial Stretch Therapy, mobility and how it benefits each and every one of us. (Check out this video for a quick, in-depth intro)
First off, what is fascial stretch therapy?
Fascia is the specialized, connective tissue layer which surrounds muscles, bones and joints, providing support and protection, and giving structure to the body. Fascia is forever changing and shifting to whatever your present physical position or activity requires (sitting, running, cycling, etc). So why is this important to you?
If you spend hours doing anything, your fascial tissue will start to shift and adjust to make those positions easier. This sounds great in theory, unless of course you spend all day sitting at a desk or in a car. When you go to do anything other than those positions, your body is no longer moving efficiently, because your shoulders are hunched forward, pelvis tilted and knees collapsed inward. Now the problems start to arise. It begins with small nagging injuries that, when unchecked, turn into something bigger: Neck, shoulder, back, hip, knee and ankle pain. This is where Fascial Stretch Therapy (FST) comes in.
FST is a unique, pain-free, assisted-stretch technique focused on increasing mobility of the muscle, fascia and joints. By manipulating, lengthening and realigning your fascia, chronic pain and stiffness decreases, helping to enhance performance, flexibility and recovery.
How does FST fit into my daily routine, and will it help with my mobility issues?
After completing your first session, the therapist will begin to guide you on your own personal, self-care journey, highlighting areas that need attention. The human body needs daily maintenance to combat the rigors placed upon it in everyday life. Maintenance includes foam rolling, press and stretch methods, and mobility exercises. Hitting these problem areas everyday will allow you to reach your optimal mobility.
My trainer mentioned I have some asymmetries in my body- will FST help?
Absolutely. Asymmetries in the body are caused by your fascia being out of alignment. FST will first show you the asymmetries, then how to deal with them, both with the therapist and on your own. Once asymmetries have been addressed, movement patterns will become much easier.
I injured my lower back, but want to avoid surgery- how will FST benefit me?
Lower back pain is most often caused by lack of mobility in the hips and sometimes in your shoulders. By allowing the hips to function properly, less stress will be placed upon the lower back. Another benefit of FST is that all movements incorporate some form of traction, which helps decompress the spine in the lower back.
Are there any mental benefits to FST?
When someone is in chronic pain, the brain is always aware of and slightly preoccupied with that pain. Small simple tasks will become daunting and you might start to pass on all the physical things you enjoy doing. Whether it’s playing with your loved ones, a round of golf or a beautiful hike, your quality of life will start to suffer when chronic pain is around. Without these simple pleasures, depression and a lack of hope will start to set in. FST will help you take back your high-quality active lifestyle!
Alright, that’s it for our Fascial Stretch Therapy coverage, see you next post!
// Your La Jolla Sports Club team