Massage therapy

What is myofascial release? How you can use it at home to manage pain

myofascial release

By Jensen Chorney, Registered Massage Therapist

If you’re suffering from routine aches and pains, you could benefit from myofascial release, in addition to your massage therapy treatments.

What is myofascial release?

Myofascial release is the combination of soft tissue and muscle energy techniques.  They are slow and subtle techniques that can be used to release fascia and muscle throughout the body.

Fascia is a thin casing of connective tissue that surrounds and holds every organ, blood vessel, bone, nerve fiber and muscle in place. Fascia is designed to stretch as you move, when it becomes stressed, it tightens up causing dysfunctions. Fascial tension can come from trauma, inflammatory responses and/or surgical procedure that produce tensile pressure. 

Myofascial dysfunction can cause pains such as trigger points and tender points in areas of discomfort. Myofascial release is a safe and effective hands-on technique that involves applying gentle sustained pressure in the in the connective tissue restrictions to eliminate pain and restore motion. 

myofascial release fascia

How you can treat pain with myofascial release at home

Fascial relaxation is achieved through the application of appropriate techniques that stress the dysfunctional tissues.  Techniques you can use at home are:

  • Stretching
  • Foam rolling
  • Lacrosse or tennis balls on targeted areas

Foam rolling is also an effective way to loosen tight fascia.  Even if you do not have access to a foam roller, using home objects safely such as a broomstick handle, rolling pin or even a frozen water bottle are beneficial to use in areas that you are experiencing muscular tension and pain.

Tennis or lacrosse balls are good at targeting specific tender points caused by myofascial pain in the body.  For example, if you are experiencing neck tension, lying on your back on a solid surface and placing a tennis ball right under the base of your skull and finding the “point” of discomfort, where it isn’t too much to take in, spend a couple moments relaxing and breathing and repeat on the other side of the neck.

You can purchase myofascial release tools at our clinic. See the massage tools and products we sell in our clinic >

myofascial release tools massage

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