10 Principals of Fascial Stretch Therapy

10 Principals of Fascial Stretch Therapy

Author: Kendall Brand

What is Fascial Stretch Therapy? FST is a modified proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation flexibility system. It involves stabilization straps to assess and remove restrictions to movement in joints, muscles, fascia and the nervous system. FST is hands-on and results are quicker and more thorough than traditional, isolated stretching. FST involves traction in various positions and planes, traction is the physical act of decompressing the two surfaces of a joint. Manually decompressing the joint triggers a stretch in the capsule and causes relaxation of the muscles that share the same innervation source that cross on or near the joint.  What this basically means is that we are performing a fluid series of stretches that loosens all the muscles and fascia (connective tissue that surrounds muscles) around a joint.  This is more efficient and produces better and faster results for tight or sore muscles and joints.

Fascial Stretch Therapy uses 10 principles of stretching.
  • Number one – targeting the entire joint rather than an isolated muscle.
  • Principle two – get maximal lengthening by using traction.  Traction is the physical act of decompressing the two surfaces of a joint.
  • Three – stretch in multiple planes. We move in multiple planes, therefore we should be stretching in multiple planes. FST stretches in not only sagittal plane but also with a specific traction, diagonal, rotation and spiral pattern to reach each angle.
  • Principle four – following a logical order. Starting with the specific joint, moving to the shorter muscles and fascia then moving to the longer muscles and fascia.
  • Five – achieve range of motion without pain. Many people think stretching should be painful or associated with discomfort. Clients then tend to guard their muscles without realizing, FST begins with traction, oscillation and circumduction allowing the client to feel relaxed, and allowing the therapist to assess the joints.
  • Six – stretching fascia not just isolated muscles. The brain is systematized according to sequences and movement patterns, mechanoreceptors in muscles organize only 20% of the body while the rest is distributed in the fascia in the form of free nerve endings and other receptors. Isolated stretching targets only 20% while FST targets 20% and all the fascia distributed.
  • Seven – FST uses a technique from PNF called contract-relax allowing relaxation of the muscles and increasing the ability for a deeper stretch.
  • Principle eight and nine, synchronizing breathing with movement and tuning the nervous system to current conditions, allowing relaxation and reducing guarding.
  • Lastly, principle ten, adjusting the stretching to the clients goals. This means every FST session will be different for each client dependent on their needs.

Fascial Stretch Therapy is for all clientele that can benefit an elite athlete to the average gym goer. Problems in the gym can relate back to flexibility and restriction of movement; therefore analyzing the movement and addressing the restrictions prior to the session can be beneficial in addressing the issues and where to focus during the session. Anything from kyphosis to asymmetrical weight shifts can be solved with FST when paired with a correct stabilizing program.

If you are suffering from tight muscles, bad posture, lack of mobility, pain in joints and muscles, FST can help.  Contact us to book in a session or read more about our Langley Fascial Stretch Therapy services we offer.  FST combined with our Langley personal Training services is the best way to create flexibility with FST while creating strength and stability with our training options.

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If you’re like me you have been humming and hawing about doing this for a long time. You are looking at websites,... getting all ready to go for it only to say to yourself “maybe later”. I have done the big gym thing before and it’s not my cup of tea, main reasons being that I can never decide what equipment I should use or exercises to do, what areas I need to focus on and most importantly how to perform every exercise properly as to not injure myself. I’m one that needs to just show up to the gym, be told what exercises I am doing and be guided through those exercises in a manner that I won’t injure myself, but also with the intent to achieve the greatest result. I have now been a member at Vaughan’s for over a year and can’t say enough about it. First off this testimonial is something I have wanted to do for a long time. I work out three times per week and have worked with the same two trainers the entire time, Alyssa and Jazmin. I have also on occasion had the fortune of working with some of the other trainers, while mine were on holidays. Marissa, Allyshia, Julianne and Tyler have all been fabulous and a pleasure to work with. This gym is nothing like the ‘big box chain style gyms’. There is no need to feel intimidated and there is every age and body type working out here. If however, you are looking for yoga or spin classes this is not the gym for you. You get to know everyone from the trainers along with many of the other members. It is without a doubt something I look forward to doing each and every time and that’s something I never thought I would hear myself say as I have always hated the gymJarid Vaughn has created an incredible environment here and joining his gym is one of the best things I have ever done. I turned 50 when I first joined and I while I eat fairly well, I was a bit heavier than I wanted to be, had aches and pains here and there and just generally wanted to feel healthier and feel better about myself. I have achieved all that and then some. I never have to weigh myself because I can see the changes. I can easily say that I am in the best physical shape of my life and while I may still have the odd ache and pain (I am over 50 after all), so many of the other issues I was having for years have all disappeared. My wife has now joined Vaugn’s one day per week and she too is really enjoying it. If you are hesitating on whether or not to join, I hope I have at least convinced you to contact Jarid and set up a consultation. Then you can stop doing your endless research on the internet and making excuses. Rob Koremanread more
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