In my experience (and according to one of my teachers, Whitney Lowe) muscle tension is the MOST common muscular disorder. More specifically, muscle hypertonicity.
What is Hypertonicity or a Hypertonic Muscle?
Hypertonicity is resting tension of your muscle (the tonus) is too high, causing imbalance. The opposite muscles are not as tense, and you are 'imbalanced'. So, you end up with discomfort and warped posture. The posture isn't a big deal if you have no pain. But if you do . . . . . . , you are suffering from possibly a sore back, restricted movement.
How does it happen?
Hypertonicity is more neurological than physical. You muscles have been contracted too hard and too often and are still getting signals to contract even in the resting stage. Years of bad posture, lots of repetitive movement - working as a potter, swiming, surf paddling, tennis, bench pressing and hunching over a computer. . . . . Hypertonicity also reduces fluid flow through the muscle, and extra tension on the assoiciated joints. Clearly extra joint pressure can lead to problems, and lower fluid flow contributes unhealthy tissue.
To add to the mess, over time the muscle or facial tissue may shorten, causing a physcial restrictions.
What can we do about it?
Basically we will work to relieve the tension through a variety of manners.
I approach hypertonicity with an thorough assessement. Each client has different movement patterns and restrictions. However, a treatment plan usually involves:
- Massage to bring new neurological stimulus to the region. (heat, deep tissue, electrical stimulation may be used)
- Streching in session and some assignment for homework. (Yes I give homework;)
- Discussion of posture habits and possible reducation of body movements. (Are you willing to change a posture or habit?)
- Treatment of related body regions - opposing muscles. The body is a system so we treat the related regions.
- I may even refer you for chiropractic work (yes, I refer out what I can't do).
If you would like to discuss your muscle pain, contact me at 646 128 5160 or EnsenadaMassage@gmail.com
Be Well, Jesse