Soft tissue consists of muscles, tendons, ligaments, and fascia. When soft tissue is injured, the body reacts by forming scar tissue (sometimes called adhesions). Scar tissue is how the body connects and binds injured tissue. Unfortunately, that same scar tissue often sticks to surround structures like “glue”. If a nerve runs through a muscle in the spot where there is scar tissue, the nerve can be pinched or pulled by that adhesion, causing it to send pain signals. The resulting limited motion overworks healthy tissue, also leading to pain.
Adhesions require treatment because the body has not mechanism to reduce scar tissue naturally. Although the body can sometimes adapt to, and tolerate a certain amount of scar tissue, it will not function optimally and can cause further injury. There are many types and styles of manual therapy for treatment of soft tissue injuries.
At Warrior Restoration LLC, soft tissue injuries are primarily addressed by:
Active Release Techniques (ART®)
ART® is a highly patented, highly successful approach to diagnosis and treatment of soft tissues including muscles, tendons, ligaments, nerves, and fascia. It is effective for low back pain, neck pain, elbow tendonosis, rotator cuff tendonosis, knee pain, shin splints, carpal tunnel syndrome, running injuries and numerous other conditions.
Unlike other treatment methods, the patient is an active participant in ART®. Every ART® session is a combination of examination and treatment. Examination involves the identification of the soft tissue that has been injured and where scar tissue has formed due to direct injury or from overuse. Treatment then involves guided movement of the patient, increasing tension and breaking up the painful scar tissue. Professional athletes have been using ART® for years.
Graston Technique ®
The Graston Technique ® incorporates a patented form of instrument-assisted soft tissue treatment and mobilization. It enables clinicians to effectively detect and treat scar tissue and restrictions that affect normal function. Skilled clinicians use the stainless steel instruments (6) to comb over and “catch” on fibrotic tissue, which immediately identifies the areas of restriction. Once the tissue has been identified, the instruments are used to break up the scar tissue so it can be absorbed by the body.
The technique serves to:
- Separate and break down collagen cross-links, and splays and stretches connective tissue and muscle fibers
- Increase skin temperature
- Facilitate reflex changes in the chronic muscle holding pattern
- Alter spinal reflux activity
- Increases the rate and amount of blood flow to and from the area
- Increases cellular activity in the region and histamine response