Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilisation Explained
Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilisation (IASTM) tools, such as the Rock Blade (shown in the image above), are ergonomically designed to detect and treat myofascial and musculoskeletal conditions, such as scar tissue, adhesions, tightness, imbalances, inflammation and degeneration. IASTM works by effectively breaking down fascial restrictions in order to restore function to the area.
IASTM allows the therapist to use a variety of techniques, from light (feather) strokes to deeper strokes, targeting the deeper layers of the fascia. So, what is fascia? Fascia is a dense and fibrous sheet of connective tissue that is primarily made of collagen fibres. It has a similar structure to a spider web. Fascia is designed to stabilise and allow flexibility to the tissues of the muscles, ligaments, tendons, skin and other internal structures. Overtime, when the tissues become damaged from stress (like repetitive strain from exercise) or injury (like sprains or strains), fibroblasts lay down more collagen fibres, forming adhesions and scar tissue. This will reduce and limit tissue flexibility, function and range of motion at the joint. This is where instrument assisted soft tissue mobilisation (IASTM) can help.
Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilisation is non-evasive and generally pain-free, although some redness is likely to appear in the area the following day
IASTM allows the therapist to stretch and pull fascia, increase the blood flow to the local area and stimulate nerve receptors that affect muscle tone and mobility. Stretching the fascia may reduce adhesions and scar tissue, which can increase motion, flexibility and muscle tone. Increasing blood flow to the area optimises healing and function. Issues such as neck, back and shoulder pain, muscle tension, sprains, strains, tendonitis and post-surgical scar tissue can be improved by this non-evasive instrument.
Combining exercise with stretching, blading and regular massage can help correct biomechanical deficiencies by addressing muscle imbalances. Exercising will help strengthen any weak areas. Stretching, blading and massage can help lengthen the tissues in order to improve any areas of tension. Contact me for a treatment if you suffer with muscle tension or tightness.