Fascia and pain-free living
Fascia. You've probably heard the term, because it's a buzz word in the fitness industry these days.
There's been a lot of new research on the fascial system in the last couple years, and its changing the way we think about fitness, mobility, rehabilitation, and aging.
Fascia is like a huge body stocking that sits right beneath the skin. It is a seamless system that surrounds, supports, and connects your muscles, bones, organs, and nerves. This amazing system requires fluid in order to function properly and, you guessed it, as we age, and as we perform repetitive activities, it becomes dehydrated. This causes pain and stiffness.
But there is good news. Researchers have found that this system, which was previously disregarded because we believed it was insignificant, is actually adaptable and intelligent. We can manipulate the connective tissue to hydrate it, eliminating pain.
Last weekend I read Sue Hitzmann's book The Melt Method, and now I'm moving on to her list of suggested readings. Hitzmann developed an entirely new way to look at and alleviate pain on one's own, with some specialized balls and foam rollers. After using these props for 10 minutes, 3 times a week, anyone can learn to fill connective tissue with fluid, make it supple, and alleviate pain.
I'm excited about this method for 2 reasons.
- The first is rather selfish: I'm no stranger to chronic pain. During the tech boom in the late 90's I spent years working at a firm, sitting at a computer for 12-14 hours a day. 6 years of that repetitive activity left me with unbearable elbow, wrist, and finger pain that I still feel every day, even though I quit that job 13 years ago. In fact, I don't think I'd last a single day in an office environment today. I've seen countless doctors who've given me no better advice than to stop using computers and cell phone. I'd love some relief!
- The second: almost all of my clients have some type of chronic pain. They've had surgery on their knees and ankles and feel no better than they did before the procedures. They are aging and feel stiff. They have pain from repetitive activity at work. I want to add my new knowledge to my sessions with them, to make sure they are strong, balanced, healthy and pain free. Who doesn't want that?
This new research is so cool: I just had to share it with you. I've begun to use the method and have experienced immediate results. The mobility in my wrists is greater. My grip strength is greater. AND, I know there are more benefits to come. This is definitely a game changer.