What is Fascial Stretch Therapy?

Assisted Stretch

While you are likely familiar with the idea of stretching to improve flexibility, you may not have heard of fascial stretch therapy (FST) and how it can benefit you by providing better long-term flexibility and mobility. In this blog post, you’ll learn:

  • What fascial stretch therapy is
  • The potential benefits of stretching your fascia

Your fascia is what keeps your body connected. It is the collagen-rich tissue that holds together everything including individual joints, muscles, and organs. The fascia can benefit from stretching. This can be true for both active people and less-active individuals who simply want to maintain a good range of motion. Taking advantage of FST services in Grand Rapids, MI to assist you in maintaining fascia health can come with a long list of benefits.

What is Fascial Stretch Therapy

Modern FST services are often heavily based on a book written by Ann Fredrick, a flexibility specialist who originally used fascial stretching to train Olympic athletes on the men’s wrestling team. Fascial stretch therapy is a little different from the more traditional stretching you may be used to. Rather than doing the stretches yourself, a therapist assists you in the movements. Generally, you will arrive wearing comfortable clothing and lie on a table that is similar to a massage table while the therapist manually moves your body through the stretches. The therapist may also ask you to breathe in and out to fit with the movements.

The Benefits of Stretching and Fascial Stretch Therapy

Most FST services focus heavily on helping you develop healthier joints through a focus on the joint capsules in your body as well as the fascia as a whole. The goal of this is to relieve pressure and create a better range of movement throughout your joints, which can go a long way to preventing injury and helping you develop better stability throughout your body.

Stretching the fascia can ease the many different strains your body is under every day. Whether it be sitting for long periods or participating in sports, almost everybody experiences some form of repeated posture or motion that can cause pressure on the joints and create tight areas in the fascia. In addition to relieving pressure fascial stretching can also:

  • Assist with weight loss
  • Allow you to have naturally better posture
  • Give you access to increased flexibility
  • Prevent you from losing range of motion over time

Fascial stretch therapy can be extremely effective and you shouldn’t be surprised if you notice some improvements following your first session. It can also be incredibly relaxing and a great way to relieve the physical stress you have built up over time. Best of all, it is a convenient service that is available in Grand Rapids, MI.

Fascial Stretch Therapy in Michigan

The fascia is what holds your body together and benefits from a little extra care. With its many potential health benefits, fascial stretching is a great place to start for people to improve their overall wellness or performance. We offer fascial stretch therapy services in Grand Rapids, Michigan and soon in Naples, Florida. We believe everybody has the potential to develop greater health and wellbeing. If you think fascial stretch therapy may be right for you, contact us through this form or by clicking the contact tab on our website to get started.

Image Source: Studio Romantic / Shutterstock

Benefits of Stretching

A young fit woman practices some stretches following Healix Center's advice on stretching during physical exercise
Lady side stretching

Stretching is one of the simplest and most effective ways to turn your entire day around in moments. However, the practice of stretching isn’t just limited to stress relief or increasing your performance. There are many different ways for people to participate in stretching. Learn more about how stretching benefits your entire body for incredible results.

Stretching Decreases Stress

Stress is at the root of many aches, pains, and restless nights. Stretching is a natural stress reliever and is even considered a stress deterrent. Incorporating regular stretching in your life provides a regularly scheduled mental break you can count on to decompress, calm your thoughts and reset your mind. Stretching also helps release any tension in your musculoskeletal system that can come from experiencing stress.

Stretching Reduces Pain

Stretching lengthens and loosens muscle groups that are tight or strained. Pulled or strained muscles left unattended take longer to heal and cause a significant amount of pain due to a limited range of motion. When you have limited mobility and range of motion, day-to-day tasks can sometimes seem impossible and feel excruciating. Slow and purposeful stretching can also prevent future injuries. The routine practice of stretching increases your ability to get back to normal faster and with less difficulty.

Stretching Optimizes Performance

Stretching also strengthens muscle memory and improves elasticity. Appropriately preparing your muscles for the hard work you will be putting them through when training in Grand Rapids, Michigan, will help prevent injury and promote recovery. You may have heard of athletes using stretching both as a warm-up and a cool down for their more intensive workouts, but stretching can be beneficial as a stand-alone practice too.

Stretching Improves Circulation

Circulation isn’t just crucial for athletic performance. While sports players take great care to keep their circulation at its max, ordinary people and even those who suffer from circulatory disorders will benefit from stretching. Compression socks are one aspect of maintaining your circulation. Stretching can help increase blood flow to all areas of your body, including the muscle groups you use on the field, the court, or the office floor.

Stretching Maintains Weight

Stretching keeps you moving. Whether your goal is to lose weight, gain, or maintain your current weight, stretching can help you meet your goals. Fitness is a popular activity in Grand Rapids, Michigan, so stretching is on the rise. Because stretching is a dynamic way to prepare your body for a range of motion, it is versatile enough to meet your goals no matter what they are. Stretching also prevents injury so you can continue the workout routine that has been successful for you so far.

Increase Wellness With Stretching

Stretching comes in many different forms to benefit all kinds of bodies. This practice is a springboard for supporting your overall well-being, from essential self-care stretching to fascial stretch therapy to dynamic pre-workout stretch sessions. Increased circulation and regular movement may lead to decreased circulatory disorders, heart disease, and obesity. Keeping your body in shape and ready for optimal performance can prolong your career in sports or your participation in your favorite activities or hobbies in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Non-invasive pain management can help people heal faster and stay healthier for more extended periods. Everyone deserves to experience sustained wellness as they progress through life.

Contact Healix Center to learn more about how stretching nourishes the body internally and externally for a holistic approach to whole-body wellness.

Image Source: GP PIXSTOCK / Shutterstock

Setup posture for Golf – why do we care about it?

Golf Posture

What do you know about your setup or address posture in golf? Have you had anyone look at it? Have you seen yourself on camera or in a mirror when you address the golf ball? Setup posture is a very important piece to your golf swing. It is the starting foundation for your swing and the basis for which you move. There are 3 different classifications when we are talking about setup posture. 1) Neutral (or ideal) posture; 2) C-posture; and 3) S-posture.

Neutral Posture
C- Posture

Different Golf Posture Setups

The ultimate goal of a neutral setup posture is to allow your body to rotate fully around an axis that isn’t already blocking movement or causing inhibition of stabilizing muscles. C-posture, the rounding of the thoracic spine (or torso) from the tailbone to the neck, puts the body in an inefficient posture for the upper back to rotate well and stay in posture. The player is really only able to have a short and wide backswing from this setup posture without major swing faults coming into play. This position is seen because of a few reasons. One, is a physical limitation in the thoracic spine to extend (straighten) and rotate due to stiffness. Another is poor posture due to inhibition of the scapular stabilizers (muscle around the shoulder blade through the mid back), which is a strength and/or stability problem. And, finally, this posture can also be due to the player being unaware of good positioning or simply a lack of knowledge on what they “should” do.

How to Improve C-Posture

How does one improve a C-posture? It depends on the cause. The examples given above can basically be broken down into 4 categories. Mobility, stability, inexperience, other (non-physical).

1. Mobility Dysfunction:

If this posture is due to stiffness of the joints of the upper back/thoracic spine or tightness in the pectoral and latissimus muscles, there are exercises that will stretch and mobilize the upper back to improve the ability to get into a more neutral position. Once more flexibility has been gained, we then work on strengthening the muscles to maintain good position in their newly found motion. Another region that can be inflexible and cause this setup posture is the pelvis. If the player is too stiff to perform a pelvic tilt, the upper body will bend excessively to address the ball. Click here for an exercise to help with mobility.

2. Stability Dysfunction:

If this posture is due to inhibition (poor motor control or strength) of the shoulder blade stabilizers, there are exercises to facilitate good contractions and improve strength in this area. Click here for an exercise to improve stability.

3. Inexperience:

This posture can be simply from lack of proper instruction or education, or not understanding a neutral posture.  Then, instruction on positioning and performing a correct hip hinge is sometimes all it takes.

4. Other non-physical issues:

Golf clubs that are too short, standing too far from the ball, or grip that is too much in the fingers of both hands.

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