Techniques and Tools for Mindful Flow
health care professional training & experience
General Swedish Massage
Massage techniques that manipulate the soft tissues of the body, moving towards the heart in the direction of blood flow, encompassing the majority of general techniques used during a treatment. These techniques can be applied with varying degrees of pressure providing light to deep tissue massage treatments. They can also be applied using a slow or brisk rhythm evoking either a relaxing or stimulating effect. They help to release muscle tension, increase circulation, decrease muscle toxins and improve flexibility.
Trigger Point Release
Trigger points are hyperirritable spots within a taut band of muscle or fascia. They are point tender, often refer pain to other areas and cause shortening of the affected tissue. The release techniques are similar to acupressure, applying direct, sustained and focused pressure followed by heat and stretching/lengthening of the area.
Used to reduce adhesions and scar tissue by employing a deep, focused pressure at right angles to the affected tissue. The fibers are realigned in a manner similar to rolling the fingers over a pile of random toothpicks, eventually they will orient perpendicular to the direction in which the fingers are moving.
Active Release Techniques
Techniques that involve active and passive movement of the limbs while manipulating the soft tissue to break up adhesions and scar tissue and restore proper blood flow to the area thus promoting healing.
Passive movement of the joints to decrease pain by reducing adhesions and increase range of motion by promoting joint health. Techniques include rocking, shaking, traction, and joint play.
The focus is on treatment to the muscles both inside and outside of the mouth and jaw, using gloves for treatment inside the mouth. This is targeted to people experiencing headaches, jaw pain/tension, and TMJ dysfunction.
Positioning, areas treated, pressure and techniques are all modified in order to most effectively and safely treat the client depending on the stage of pregnancy the client is in and specific symptoms they may be experiencing.
This is a key part of every massage treatment. Directing the client to breathe slow, controlled deep breaths from the diaphragm can help encourage relaxation and break pain cycles; it also gives the client some control over painful techniques during treatment. Inefficient breathing patterns can lead to dysfunction, both structurally and physiologically.
These techniques manually stretch the fascial layers, allowing the connective tissues to realign and release restrictions. The techniques move in the direction of the fascial restrictions, slowly holding the stretch allowing the fascia to 'unwind' itself. The gentle traction applied to restricted fascia results in heat, redness and increased blood flow to the affected area.
A Chinese medicine healing technique, gua sha involves scraping the skin with a smooth edged tool to improve circulation, addressing issues like inflammation causing chronic pain. It is intended to break up and promote better flow of stagnant energy, or chi, thereby reducing inflammation, increasing range of motion, improving circulation, and promoting healing. It is also useful in reducing fascial and muscular adhesions. Gua sha can sometimes leave red marks on the skin as it brings blood flow to the superficial layers of tissue. Treatment to the face can help alleviate headache, jaw pain and sinus congestion.
Also a healing technique of Chinese medicine, cupping involves placing cups on the skin to create suction thereby increasing circulation to facilitate healing. It contributes to a decrease in muscle tension which can improve overall blood flow and promote cell repair. It can also help release adhered fascial layers, form new connective tissues and create new blood vessels. The suction is achieved with the use of a pump, the skin may turn red as the blood vessels respond to the change in pressure. Similar to gua sha, it is also intended to break up and promote better flow of stagnant energy, or chi, thereby reducing pain & inflammation, increasing range of motion, improving circulation, and promoting healing.
Heat and cold applications can be used to facilitate healing. At Mindful Flow the forms of hydrotherapy used are cold packs, heating pads, hot towels, warm oil and hot stones.
Stretching and strengthening exercise protocols are suggested to help with your continued healing at home. They are demonstrated and then observed in order to detect any necessary adjustments. Home care routines are monitored and modified as your treatments progress.
"When you are grateful, fear disappears and abundance appears." - Anthony Robbins