Your body is a web of connective tissue (fascia) that organizes posture, movement, and body awareness.
Your muscles create movement by adjusting the tightness of the connective tissues, causing shortening along some dimensions and lengthening along others. Your bones function as spacers (like tent poles), keeping the fascial sheets spread open.
Your connective tissues are one of the richest sources of feedback to the brain, keeping it aware of movement, orientation in space, contact with others, and the potential for dangerous force overload that could lead to injury.
Your fascia responds to emotion and stress. It embeds memories of injury, emotional stress and trauma.
Since your blood vessels, nerves, and lymph channels are supported by fascial networks as they travel throughout the body, healthy fascia is essential to healthy circulation and nerve transmission.
Your connective tissues are vital in maintaining water balance throughout your body. They’re also home to precursor cells of your immune system, waiting to be activated in response to invading bacteria or other pathogens.
A skilled practitioner can gather significant information about the state of your connective tissues by using palpation (“gathering of medical information by the use of touch.”)
A vast number of connective tissue treatments have been developed by practitioners of the healing arts. The details differ but all of them affect three things: the local texture and health of the connective tissues, the ease with which your body can move, and the nerve feedback from the fascia to the brain.
Among the types of connective tissue treatment offered by Dr. Lavine are:
NeuroTactile® Therapy – a specialty of Dr. Lavine, this technique was developed by German physical therapists beginning in the 1920’s and uses a light, transverse stroke along the body surface to stimulate the subcutaneous fascia and trigger autonomic reflex effects.
Craniosacral Harmonics – an extremely light form of connective tissue treatment with roots in chiropractic and osteopathic methods of the 1920’s, Craniosacral harmonics uses sustained stretch of the subcutaneous tissues to release subtle restrictions and restore integrated movement flow throughout the body, including in the skull.
Myofascial Release (and Active Release Technique) – uses anchoring of the connective tissues while stretching and gliding of the tissues is occurring. This results in release of adhesions and the restoration of free glide of the tissues.
Trigger Point Therapy – uses finger pressure over specific knot spots (“trigger points”) in muscles to alleviate pain and allow for improved muscle function.
Friction Massage – uses vigorous cross-fiber stimulation of tendons, ligaments, or other connective tissues to stimulate healing.