Gay Wellness

FASCIA!? What is it?

FASCIA!?  What is it?

*I pulled this image off the internet and do not know of any copyright or who to give credit to!  If there is a copyright - please advise if known!

I get asked all the time: "what EXACTLY is fascia?"  There's complicated answers and there are basic answers.  I will try for this post to be as simple and straight forward as I can in hopes that it makes sense.

Try and think of our bodies as wrapped up in multiple layers of panty hose!  Maybe a dream or fetish for some, but its a great place to start about how our bodies are connected to all of its parts and the many layers of connective tissue we have in our bodies and what actually holds our body together!

Now try to imagine that you have tightness in one area of "pantyhose" as illustrated in the picture - you can see that it pulls and distorts the other strands of "pantyhose" causing the underlying tissue to then be pulled out of alignment thus causing the body to have to then compensate movement in order to remain in "balance" for movement.  

Let's say I spend the day at my desk the my neck is bent to the left side on a phone, and my body is slightly rotated to the left so I can write with my right hand and take notes, and I'm slightly sloughed in my chair.  One can then begin to imagine and feel the tightness on the left side of my neck, that my body can't rotate to the right as far as it use to rotate, and its difficult to try and sit up straight.  All this is due to connective tissue - aka FASCIA - that is tightening and restricting how my body moves.  

Kinda make sense so far?

What I do as a fascial stretch therapist is once you come in to my office, we do a body movement analysis, along with listening to your discriptions of what you feel when you move and together we design a stretch program specific to your needs.  For instance, in the example above of sitting at a desk, I would do specific stretching to address the tightness on the left side of you neck - but also address the over stretched right side of your neck; we'd do gentle rotations to the right to help restore spinal mobility; and we would do extension stretching for the back to get you out of the slouched posture to get your body awareness back so you could sit up straight.  All of this is designed and intended to reduce fascial tension and adhesions, while restoring a more normalized posture for better mobility.

Then we would begin addressing an exercise program for you to do on your own that would complement our findings to give you the postural strength to maintain better body alignment while sitting at the desk, as in the example, or for what ever your personal concerns, habits and work or athletic needs may be.

I hope this gives you a better and basic understanding of fascia.  I know sometimes for me when I get bodywork, I like to know more about specific training and what is being done to me and why its being done and I have a certain goal in mind for the session.  There are certainly times when I don't care  about anything and just want someone to touch me and help me relax!  

If you're interested in learning more, I'd love to get you on my table so you stretch better, feel the difference and MOVE better!

If you want to know more, you can follow me on Instagram, or follow my blog on my website, or check out more promotions only offered here on Gay Wellness.

JEREMY COWIN is a Certified Massage Therapist, with advanced training in  Neuro-myo Fascial Stretching, Myoskeletal-Skeletal Alignment Technique, Balance and Movement Disorders and Vagal Nerve / Pain Management.  His studio can be found at: 107 S Fair Oaks Ave., #220, Pasadena, CA 91105. He can reached via email: [email protected] and Cell/Text: 818-795-9623. 

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