Myofascial Release Technique (MRT)
Myofascial release technique (MRT)
Perhaps you have heard of Active Release Technique (ART) and look for providers who are specifically trained in this technique. Myofascial release technique (MRT), another term for this type of work, is used widely in sports therapy to encourage the healing and remodeling of injured muscles, tendons and tissues.
What does Myofascial mean and how does it contribute to pain?
Myofascial refers to muscles, and fascia, a net-like connective tissue matrix that surrounds muscles and other structures. Myofascial pain occurs when there is trauma to the tissues, whether due to an acute injury, or chronic repetitive stress. Muscular adhesions, which are dense collections of scar tissue, are then formed between the muscle fibers causing pain, weakness and decreased movement. If muscular adhesions build up, this could lead to further injury and loss of function.
How is Myofascial Release Technique performed?
MRT is performed to break up muscular adhesions and restore normal movement patterns of the muscle. MRT can be done with the practitioner passively moving the patient’s body part, or while the patient actively moves it. When using active motion, the practitioner applies pressure along the length of the muscle fibers while the patient moves in a direction to elongate the muscle further.
This active lengthening of a muscle is called an eccentric contraction. This is what happens as you lower the weight when performing a bicep curl. You are concentrically contracting, or shortening, the bicep to bring the weight up. You continue to contract the bicep as you lengthen it to lower the weight. If this didn’t occur, you would drop the weight pretty quickly! Since eccentric contraction is a more efficient way to strengthen a muscle, we approach releasing that muscle with the same action.
MRT is very specific and hands on. We use an emollient, such as cocoa butter, to help with the glide of the tissues and to reduce friction. The depth and number of passes on the muscle is dependent on tissue response. The muscle may become red following treatment, and this is due to increased circulation to the muscle and tendinous junction, thus promoting healing.
Why choose Myofascial Release Technique?
We may recommend MRT when chiropractic adjustments and therapeutic exercises alone are not providing the desired results. For example, when you feel better after a treatment, but the pain comes back after a short time. Or if you have specific athletic training goals and want to reach them faster. MRT can be a valuable tool to enhance your chiropractic treatment and get you back in the game faster than you might otherwise expect.