Soft tissue release or ‘STR’ is a massage technique often incorporated into a client’s treatment to help assess and treat areas of restriction within soft tissue, whether that be muscles, soft tissue such as tendons and ligaments, or facia/connective tissue.
Skeletal muscles are made up of elongated muscle fibres which attach to the bone to create movement. At one end you have the origin of the muscle – this is the fixed attachment point that anchors the muscle. The other end is the insertion point, and it’s from this end that movement happens. The muscle fibres shorten in the direction of the origin point to move that particular body part.
The muscular system’s main functions are the movement of the skeletal system that enables us to move, run, walk and undergo all the activities we do. Secondly it supports our skeletal system and provides postural support. When there’s dysfunction within one muscle it can quickly impact other areas of your body and lifestyle in general.
During your massage, various massage techniques will be used with the aim of restoring correct function. STR involves your therapist using manual pressure on a particular muscle to create a false attachment point, then either passively or actively stretching the muscle to encourage the muscle fibers to realign.
STR massage is also useful for targeting specific muscles rather than a whole group of muscles, so it provides a more through and in-depth treatment which improves long term recovery.
Is STR massage right for me?
STR massage is suitable for all clients who have undergone a consultation with their therapist and is usually incorporated into a client’s treatment alongside other massage techniques.
How is STR performed?
STR massage will be incorporated into your treatment at different points when appropriate. Depending on the area being treated this can be done in a prone (lying face down), supine (lying face up) or in a seated position.
When this technique is performed, you can expect your therapist to move or manually stretch the muscle and hold for a period of time before relaxing and repeating until the disfunction is resolved. Your therapist may also ask that you move the area being worked on to provide an active or assisted stretch. It’s not always the most comfortable part of the treatment but you’ll be pleased with the results!
Benefits of STR massage
Realigning muscle fibers that have been stressed due to injury
Breaking up of adhesions
Mobilisation of joints
Decreased pain response
Improved flexibility and suppleness
If you have an aching neck or tight shoulders, or any other muscle tension, a massage will put a spring back in your step and help you feel more comfortable, as well as giving you your movement back.
Book in with one of our qualified and friendly therapists today.