Massage therapy has been used as a modality to improve health for thousands of years. In British Columbia, it is a regulated and licensed profession. There have been many innovative approaches developed in massage therapy by different cultures over the centuries. It is a hands-on approach to manipulate the tissues for optimum mobility and health. At Ako Collaborative Health we include a wide range of these modalities with a focus on fascial techniques including visceral manipulation, craniosacral therapy, myofascial release and nerve manipulation.
Many factors influence the body’s ability to move with ease. A physiotherapist is a university-trained health professional who can restore mobility by identifying and addressing these factors, thus helping you achieve optimum health. Each visit is a dynamic balance of assessment and treatment, with techniques including hands-on work for joints, tendons, and soft tissue; acupuncture for pain and inflammation, and intramuscular stimulation for releasing and lengthening shortened muscles. Your treatment plan will evolve, to address pain and limitations you are experiencing; to identify the limitations found in your body, and to maximize your ability to reach your goals.
Intramuscular stimulation, or IMS, is the use of acupuncture needles to release muscles that are chronically tight, or have too much tension in positions of rest. A needle is inserted into a tight band of muscle. The needle stimulates the nerve to cause a reflexive contraction of that muscle which then relaxes to a lower level of resting tone or tension. IMS is usually directed at the tight muscles throughout the body, as well as the spinal areas that are associated with those muscles. The reason for this is because IMS is trying to change the muscle from the neurological perspective therefore we want to approach the nerves from their origins. The overall effect is thus more lasting; allowing your body to assimilate this new information, and hopefully maintain this muscle change.
For more information about IMS, visit the website for the Institute for the Study and Treatment of Pain: http://www.istop.org/
Acupuncture is based on assessing and improving the flow of energy through the body. Needles are inserted along meridians, or pathways along the body to stimulate the flow of blood or energy along that pathway. From a traditional Chinese medicine perspective, acupuncture can be used to treatment many types of general ailments; digestive, respiratory problems, and acute injuries, like a swollen knee or headaches. In physiotherapy, we tend to focus on the latter uses; employing acupuncture stimulation to reduce pain, swelling , and improve physical function.
Simply put, visceral manipulation is a system of bodywork that gently massages the organs to release the restrictions and tensions in the body and the connective tissues. It is believed that this technique improves the overall function of the body, hormonal release, circulation and muscle function.
Craniosacral Therapy uses gentle touch on the bones of the cranium, spine, sacrum and pelvis to improve balance and health of the bones, nerves, membranes, fluids and tissues associated with the brain and the spinal cord.
Myofascial Release, or myofascial trigger point therapy uses direct pressure on the associated muscles, tendons, ligaments and fascia to address immobility and dysfunction in the body. It’s focus is in the soft tissues and is very effective in relieving pain and rebalancing the body.
Hypopressives/Low Pressure Fitness
Hypopressives, or Low Pressure Fitness is a combination of postures and breathing techniques that improve the activation of the core muscles: Transversus Abdominus, the Pelvic Floor, and Multifidus. This series is an effective tool for treating pelvic floor dysfunction, including incontinence and prolapse, as well as low back pain, hernias. It can improve posture, breathing and athletic performance.
Redcord/Neurac (Neuromuscular Activation)
Neurac is a series of exercises using the Redcord Workstation to evaluate and treat musculoskeletal dysfunction in the body. The exercises use bodyweight and slings to activate and coordinate local and global muscle groups to reduce pain, improve neuromuscular control, and restore movement patterns. The Redcord/Neurac system can tailor treatment and exercise program to suit anyone; from sedentary to elite athetics, or painful injuries and injury prevention.
For more information, visit Redcord Canada: http://www.redcordcanada.com