Our bodies are not machines that can work 24/7 to no end. Muscles, tissues, joints, and bones wear out when they undergo physical duress through work and strenuous activities. And to recuperate, professional muscle therapy should be applied in order to relieve them of fatigue, stiffness, pain, and stress.
From the experts of Santa Monica massage to you, here’s everything you should know about Release Muscle Therapy.
Release Muscle Therapy Defined
Considered a form of alternative medicine therapy, release muscle therapy is the practice of treating pain in muscles, tendons, joints, and ligaments through targeted massage and tension release.
Professional therapists focus on the affected areas by applying pressure on them through varying massage techniques that can ease tightening, stiffness, and strain. Said techniques are repeatedly done on the same trigger fields (along with the areas around them), and throughout an entire session. Depending on the severity of the discomfort, succeeding sessions may be conducted.
Main Body Parts For RMT
1. Major Muscle Clusters
Trauma and/or overuse are some of the most common causes of muscle tension and pain. These major areas include your shoulders, back, neck, pelvic region, and hamstrings.
In most cases, when one muscle group experiences strain and tightening, the rest of the clusters are impacted accordingly. Though the degree of discomfort can vary per cluster.
2. Ligaments and Tendons
Ligaments are made up of several tiny fibrous connective tissues which serve as “connectors” of bones to their next adjacent ones. They keep bone structures intact while stabilizing them at the same time.
Tendons, on the other hand, are also connectors, but of muscles to bones.
When ligaments and tendons are utilised past their median capacity and are worn out, they don’t merely bring about pain. They lessen your body’s overall range for fluid motion and reflex. To put the matter simply, you’ll find it tougher to move about and get on with your regular daily routine, whether at home or at work.
These connective tissues support and safeguard both muscles and organs. Overuse induces inflammation of the fascia. The pain and fatigue felt by the fascia can be very intense because it contains nerves and nerve endings, which make it much more sensitive to soreness compared to the rest of the connective tissues.
1. Lower Back Pain
Lower back pain that’s caused by extreme tension and injury is actually among the most common job-related impairments. Studies reveal that at least 80% to 82% of working adults, regardless of age, will experience lower back pain at least once in their lifetime.
Of course, the hard-pressing truth is that it’s a recurring body injury, and should thus be addressed promptly.
Acute back pain is a category that’s accounted as a minor injury. Its duration typically spans a few days to a few weeks. Alternately, chronic back pain is its more severe cousin. Aside from impacts of heavy physical work, ageing, and body composition play a role in it, too.
In the context of ageing, chronic lower back pain becomes more frequent from 30 years of age onward. As a person ages, fluid reduction in the vertebrae naturally transpires. Thus, your spine’s disc will be more vulnerable to friction and eventually, irritation to the point of discomfort.
Loss of muscle mass in the back can also be attributed to chronic lower back pain.
Let’s not forget how constant sitting, or worse, sitting without the right chair height, and without the right body weight and back support, will aggravate it.
Other conditions that produce back pain include sciatica, spinal stenosis, abnormal spinal conditions (i.e. scoliosis, lordosis, etc.), spondylitis, spondylosis, etc.
2. Shoulder And Neck Strain
Similar to acute and chronic lower back pain, the shoulder and neck are classified into the same categories. Any amount of shock that’s done to the bones around your neck and shoulders are absorbed by cervical discs in the same area. This concludes in shoulder and neck strain.
Aside from muscles, the neck and shoulders contain bones, tissues, and ligaments that, if any one of them is inflamed or distressed, will immediately affect their surrounding parts.
Once the pain becomes chronic, cold and heat packs become less likely to work on them. In fact, some experts say that these DIY cures may work only initially. However, they’re not a long-term solution. And they definitely won’t offer lasting effects.
You’ll be surprised to know that some of the underlying causes of shoulder and neck strains are everyday-ordinary to-dos. Sleeping on your pillow while your body and/or head is in a twisted or wrong resting pose, bad posture, working on your desk for hours without shifting your body’s position, straining your muscles due to strenuous exercise, etc.
Other conditions that produce neck and shoulder pain include fractures in the cervical vertebrae, meningitis, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, fibromyalgia, herniated cervical disk, etc.
3. Tension Headache
Tension headache is a common headache variety that affects at least 78% of the general working population. It is related to tightness around the muscles in, or close to, the neck, head, and scalp. The pain may radiate to the eyes, the back of the eyes, and forehead.
It’s wrongly interchanged with symptoms of a migraine. The latter befalls one who exerts physical effort when completing any form of work (i.e. carrying heavy objects, walking up a long stretch of stairs, etc.). Migraines may give rise to nausea as well.
The headache caused by migraines is of a throbbing nature and may go away after one has rested. Plus, it rarely leads to nausea, unlike the first.
Conversely, tension headaches are associated with having a tensed and contracting nature. After all, it’s described as an abnormal contraction of muscles as instigated by stress.
Though the level of pain can be anywhere from mild, moderate, to severe, it’s very often chronic and requires constant visits to your release muscle therapist.
Staring at a computer screen for long periods at a time, physical stress, emotional stress, and even hunger are the predominant causes of tensions headaches.
Other conditions that produce tension headaches include dry eyes and/or eye strain, flu, alcohol and/or caffeine intake, smoking, sleep disorders and/or lack of sleep, not eating meals on time, lack of proper water intake, clogged and/or infected sinuses, etc.