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Self Myofascial Release For Between Chiropractic Visits

A frustrating aspect of chiropractic care for both doctor and patient is the fact that sometimes the adjustments made during the session don’t hold during the interim period before the next session, setting things back to square one. Patients return with the same symptoms because although their condition was treated well during there chiropractic session, there wasn’t enough preventative maintenance done afterwards to make it stick. 

To keep patients enjoying the benefits of their chiropractic adjustments for longer periods between visits is a technique known as self-myofascial release. This form of at-home, self-therapy can be instrumental in preventing chronic flare-ups and keeping the skeleton aligned properly after a visit to the chiropractor. The use of a foam roller, that can be purchased for around $20 online, is a key tool for performing this form of self physical therapy.

Self-myofascial release performed with a foam roller can improve flexibility, function, performance, and reduce the risk of injuries. The basic concept is that the body’s own weight is used to roll on the cylindrical roll of foam which massages the soft-tissue out of tight, restricting conditions and back into an extensive range of motion. One major advantage of this self-therapy is that it can be on the patient's own time, putting them in charge of their own recovery, and making their chiropractic visits more effective and efficient. 

The foam roller works by engaging what is called the kinetic chain in the fitness industry. The kinetic chain is composed of all the parts that make up the soft tissue system which includes the muscles, tendons, ligaments, and fascia and then the neural system, and finally the body’s joints. These interdependent parts of the kinetic chain all require the good performance of each other to function properly. If one part the system fails, all others will be compromised. If the muscles are tight, for example, then the range of motion in the joints is shortened. 

By using the self-myofascial release routine the following benefits can be expected:

  • Corrected muscle imbalances
  • Improved range of motion for the joints
  • Relief form muscle soreness  and joint stress
  • Decreased neuromuscular hypertension

All of the above effects go a long way to prolonging the benefits of chiropractic treatments. The simple movements that compose a self-myofascial relief session are held for about 1-2 minutes each. If pain is experienced the protocol is to stop and rest until it subsides. 

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Used under Creative Commons Licensing courtesy of Steffen Korn

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