Fascia is the name for the connective tissue that enfolds and connects all living cells of the body in an uninterrupted, three-dimensional web from head to toe. Take out all the cells except for the fascia, and you are left with a complete outline of every muscle, bone and inner organ inside the body. Myofascia refers specifically to the fascia of muscles and tendons, but the separation of myofascia from the rest of the connective tissue is purely academic.
Fascia has its own inner tension pattern that can be influenced by habitual posture, restrictive clothing or jewelry, acute injuries, surgeries, scar tissue, inflammation, poor circulation, and more. Adhesions can form which interrupt the smooth gliding of layers of fascia on top of each other as we move and stretch our bodies. Stretch and tension then translate to tissues which are not meant to stretch, and pain results from damage to those tissues.
Myofascial Release (MFR) applies light pressure and stretch to the fascia, nudging through restrictions patiently rather than forcing the weakest link to give. It can be applied with precision to very small, localized adhesions, or over broad tension bands across the trunk and down the extremities. The principal difference between MFR and massage is that MFR works very specifically and respectfully with the body following its cues in its own pace, rather than applying a preconceived massage program to the muscles with as much force as tolerated or desired. The gentleness of the approach invites the body to relax, let down its guards, and allow access to much deeper levels of fascia.
Myofascial Release decreases pain, balances muscle tension, and improves body alignment, posture, mobility, and circulation.