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Fascia – The New Frontier In Bodywork

Fascia – The New Frontier In Bodywork

I’ve been traveling, teaching and reading (and writing) – a lot  lately – hence the lack of blog posts.

It’s about the reading and writing bits that I want to offer some thoughts in this posting – as it seems to me that there has been a definite shift in terms of new therapeutic directions, since the first Fascia Research Congress back in October 2007. Now when I say ‘new’ I realize that for many practitioners and therapists fascial considerations have long been a major focus – but for the vast majority my sense is that fascia has remained in the  background – not right at the center of what those of us who work on the human body could and should be considering.

I was modestly involved in the 1st Congress (Boston, 2007), and am a small cog in the wheels that are turning to organize the 2nd – Amsterdam, October this year. The Journal of Bodywork & Movement Therapies that I edit published many abstracts, articles and research reports from the Boston event, and will do so again this time….and it’s about some of the topics that will be discussed and taught (post Congress workshops) that I want to write today. I’ve been looking through the hundreds of abstracts sent for review by the Scientific Committee and although I cannot preempt the actual event by revealing details, I can share topics – which may offer a flavor of the range and variety of fascial topics that will be available (at the congress and in JBMT).

These are some of the abstract titles:

  • Undiagnosed Posterior Thigh Pain, A Fascial Rather Than Neural Cause? (Australian study)
  • Fascial Distortion Model (FDM) – An Effective Method For The Treatment Of Shoulder Pain (German research)
  • Anatomical Discovery of Meridians and Collaterals (Chinese research)
  • Evaluating the effectiveness of Myofascial Release to reduce pain in people with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS): A Pilot Study (U.K. study)
  • Myofascial Release (MFR) efficacy in alleviating specific symptoms in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus: Two Case Studies (U.K. study)
  • Visceral Adhesions as Fascial Pathology (dissection evidence, USA)
  • Effect of Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment in Essential Hypertension and Initial Vascular Wall Alteration (Italian research)
  • Prospective Investigation on Hip Adductor Strains Using Myofascial Release (Canadian study)
  • Healing Anterior Cruciate Ligament Without Surgery (Spanish research)
  • Distant Surgery Scars and Other Fascial Restrictions Perpetuate Pectoralis Minor: Trigger Points in Two Cases of Severe Chronic Hand Pain (USA)
  • Asessment and treatment of fascial strain in thepelvic girdle (Canada)
  • Fascia slings and lumbopelvic stability from a new perspective (Holland)
  • Inflammation Release Technique:Light Pressure Deep Tissue Protocol for Fascial Restriction (USA hospital study)
  • Inner Psoas Tri-axial Deformation Under Tensile Load Corresponds to Superficial Dense Connective Tissue Morphology (Canadian study)
  • The Strain Patterns of the Deep Fascia of the Lower Limb (Australian report)

……and these are just a random sample!

If you want to get a recent overview on the entire topic see Mark Lindsay’s new book “Fascia: Clinical Applications for Health and Human Performance” (Delmar.Cengage 2008)

I will write more on the topic of fascia in genera,l and the conference in particular over the coming months …for now though, my suggestion is that all therapists should investigate the ideas and methods that are evolving in this field.

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