Myofascial release describes the manual massage technique for stretching the fascia and releasing bonds between fascia and integument, muscles, and bones. It is used with the goal of eliminating pain, increasing range of motion, and balancing the body. During this process, the fascia is manipulated, directly or indirectly, allowing the connective tissue fibers to reorganize themselves into a more flexible, functional fashion.
Fascia is a seamless web of connective tissue that covers and connects the muscles, organs, and skeletal structures in our body. It is located between the skin and the underlying structure of muscle and bone. The myofascial system unites both muscle and fascia.
Restriction to fascia can be caused by injuries, stress, inflammation, trauma, and/or poor posture. Since fascia is an interconnected web, the restriction (or tightness) to fascia at one place in the body can spread to other places in the body with time – like a pull in a sweater. The goal of myofascial release is to release fascia restriction and restore its tissue health.