Tools and Techniques
As a sports therapist I employ a variety of different techniques to help you achieve your individual goal. Which technique/s I use will depend on your personal needs and will be discussed with you during consultation. Below is a glimpse of some of the common treatment methods you can expect:
The body works best when good postural alignment is achieved. Poor posture may create areas of tension or pain which can be further exacerbated by your natural inclination to compensate for that pain by further misaligning your body. A postural assessment will involve manual tests to seek out the areas which require adjustment to enable the body to once again more evenly distribute it's weight.
Massage can be broken down into four main types namely effleurage (skimming or stroking movements), petrissage (kneading or rolling motions), frictions (small strong movements suing the fingers and thumb) and tapotement(striking and cupping). The type of massage employed would be dependent on the type of therapy outcome we would be aiming to effect.
Trigger Point Therapy
The body is a complex network of soft tissue which can become the home for trigger points. A trigger point is an area within muscle that causes pain in a different area of the body. E.g. A trigger point in the back cause pain to occur in the neck. Trigger point massage therapy targets the real source of the pain in order to alleviate the symptom which manifests elsewhere using cycles of isolated pressure and release.
Soft Tissue Mobilisation
Stiff, immobile soft tissues and those with poor circulation due to inactivity or increased tension can be helped using soft tissue mobilization which breaks down adhesions and scar tissue and stimulaing tissue regeneration.
By moving a joint through its natural motion tension is released by stretching the soft tissue and improving blood circulation. Force is gently applied to this movement until the deep tissue is reached and release.
Soft Tissue Release
Soft tissues include muscles, tendons, fascia, ligaments, skin, synovial membranes, fat, blood vessels, and nerves which are all attached to one another. Sometimes the attachments are interrupted by muscles fibres becoming damaged or tangled. Soft tissue release focuses on these areas stretching those fibres and targeting specific areas of tension within the muscle.
Chronic pain caused by sensitivity and tightness in your myofascial tissues which surround and support the muscles throughout your body can be eased using this myofascial release. Tightness in the affected area occurs by applying light manual massage pressure across the broad network of muscles and tissue.
IASTM (Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilisation)
Particularly helpful for patients post injury or following surgical procedures where scar tissue may be present, IASTM uses instruments designed to apply just the right kind of pressure to help break down scar tissue or thickening. The response created ignites the body's natural anti inflammatory response working to absorb the scar tissue and restrictions and therefore improving the flexibility and movement to the area affected.
I will ask you to perform a range of movements up your point of resistance and I will gently manipulate them also to assess your range of movement. You may also complete strength tests for the muscles and ligaments around the joint. Identifying the specific problems will inform the best treatment plan for you.
Taping & Strapping
Kinesiology taping or strapping involves placing strips of tape or in a particular way on the affected areas of the body. Using the correct directional placement the tape will provide support to tendons, joints and muscles.
Together we will talk through and identify the injury and its causes. We will also discuss your goals and then formulate a plan based around exercise and therapeutic intervention. The ultimate aim being to return you to peak condition asap and to prevent reoccurrence of the issue.