Updated: Feb 2, 2022
We have discussed Myofascial Release before and we mentioned general information about it. So now, we will be including just how beneficial it truly is to your physical health as well other aspects of your wellness. We will also be including some Myofascial release exercise that is most common in your therapy sessions.
Remember that Myofascial Release is a hands-on approach to managing your pain and discomfort. And as physical therapists have said, it’s an intense journey as well, and that makes it even more effective in pain management. Expect a session full of massaging, kneading, and gentle stretches of the muscles and fascia to work out those knots. The pressure is applied with the therapist’s hands, elbows, or a massage tool like a foam roller or a ball. You might feel sore after a session, but when it subsides, you’ll feel a lot looser than before.
You can use Myofascial release in areas such as the neck, shoulders, arms, jaw, head, lower back, hips, quads, calves, and your feet as they are often used a lot and in fixed positions for long periods of time. When Myofascial release is done regularly you can improve your range of motion, helps the body relax, reduce soreness, improves circulation, and releases tension and stress.
Since the pandemic started, it became more common for patients to have their therapy at home and to be more mindful of doing their prescribed home exercises. So if you’re also working from home and need to stay home more, it’s good news that myofascial release can be done at home. While it’s true that you can simply find tutorials online for basic myofascial release techniques, we still say otherwise. As a constant reminder, you need to have a thorough evaluation with your Physical Therapist in order to track the root cause of your pain. After that, your PT will develop a home regimen that can always be modified when needed. Consistency is key with Myofascial release- you have to do it every day and keep the routine going to really get the results you want.
The most common mistake that patients do when they execute myofascial release at home is they do it too much. It is not a competitive sport and you have nothing to prove to anyone and it isn’t about how much pain you can stand before you pass out. Another reminder is, instead of starting off with the strongest tool you can find, start with something like a tennis ball and use it to gently roll out your muscles or to apply pressure to those tight spots. You can also use a lacrosse ball if you don’t feel any pressure. Experiment and adjust accordingly to your needs and don’t spend money on expensive massage gadgets.
Here is some do-it-yourself myofascial release exercise that you can do at home.
Plantar Fascia Release
Sits on a chair with one of your foot on a ball, the other foot flat on the floor and your back in a neutral position ( meaning slightly arched)
Roll the ball under the arch of your foot from the heel to the toes.
Apply pressure when needed and repeat on the other foot.
Sit on the floor with one leg straight and your arms behind
Position the ball so it is under your calf
Next, roll over the ball to massage the area
Switch the ball to the other calf and repeat the process
To ease back pain, stand against a wall with a ball between your tense muscle region and the wall
Roll the ball on and around the tender point
Focus on the muscles and avoid the spine.
We only gave you exercises using a simple tennis ball, but there’s more. Stop if your feel a sharp, shooting pain that doesn’t ease up and contact your Physical Therapist