Myofascial Stretching is a relatively new technique that’s gaining popularity as an effective way to treat and prevent joint injuries—especially among athletes. Very different from classic stretching techniques, Myofascial Stretching utilizes precise postures and highly coordinated movements to target the fascia surrounding specific joints and muscles. If you read my previous post, you know that it’s a useful tool for promoting good hydration. But you may be wondering, “What does stretching have to do with staying well-hydrated?” Read on to learn how Myofascial Stretching helps promote proper hydration as well as the healthy nourishment of tissues throughout your entire body—including the joints, muscles, spine, and connective tissues.
What Is Myofascial Stretching?
Myofascial Stretching is almost unrelated to classic stretching techniques. The stretches are designed to stretch the outer layer of connective tissue (i.e., the fascia) surrounding specific muscles. Therefore they are highly coordinated and active. In order to target specific areas of fascia, you have to completely control the connective tissue of both the muscle you are stretching and the tissues of the bones that it’s attached to. You also must limit the ability of the connective tissue of the rest of the body to be stretched in a way that would compensate for the muscle being targeted. By enhancing the quality of the fascia, you enhance the performance of the muscle action as well as the recovery after extended use.
Because the stretches and postures involved in this technique are very precise, supervision by a trained professional is required. In other words, don’t try this at home. Try it here!
So How Does It Promote Healthy Hydration?
To put it simply, Myofascial Stretching leads to healthy fascia, which leads to healthy hydration. Remember: The health of the fascia—and therefore the overall health of the entire body—is fundamentally linked to the hydration of the tissues. Why? Because the movement of water into and through the entire body relies on proper myofascial balance and function. As your fascia improves, you will be able to drink more water, increase overall hydration, and reduce toxins more efficiently. Learn more about the importance of fascial health.
More Benefits of Myofascial Stretching
Beyond promoting proper hydration, there are many other benefits of Myofascial Stretching. It can also be used to:
- Treat and prevent joint injuries
- Enhance muscle performance
- Improve muscle recovery
- Increase flexibility and range of motion
- Improve posture and muscle balance
- Promote spine and joint health
- And more!
BTMAflex Group Exercise Classes
Ready to give Myofascial Stretching a try? Come to one of my BTMAflex classes here in St. Louis. BTMAflex is an ELDOA group class that uses Myofascial Stretching to promote fascial health and improve mobility, flexibility, and range of motion. Visit BTMAStudios.com for a full class schedule—including BTMAflex, BTMAfit, and BTMAfix.