Editor’s Note: This article was updated and checked for accuracy on 4/16/19. Thank you.
I’ve been doing a new home therapy designed to break down and allow new healthy fascia to form and I’m happy to report I’m more than impressed with the results. I have seen a great deal of relief from symptoms that stem from my Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome as well as my Fibromyalgia and POTS. I would recommend this treatment for anyone looking for relief and/or improvement in any of the following categories:
The above lists are all improvements I personally experienced within the first 6 months of blasting and continue to enjoy so long as I keep up my practice semi-regularly. It seems amazing, but the restoration of nerve and blood flow to the extremities through fasciablasting can trigger major changes in our physiology.
What is Fascia?
Fascia is a type of fibrous connective tissue that is dense and firm. It lays beneath the skin, binds the muscle together into bundles and connects it with other connective tissue such as tendons and ligaments, and wraps the organs. In essence, it is the glue that holds the soft tissue of our bodies together and connects it to our bones. In Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome and Fibromyalgia, fascia is often dysfunctional, overgrowing and at the same time constricting the muscle. Often, it begins to strangle the muscle and nerve fibers within, causing oxygen deprivation and poor circulation, and an inability for the muscle to function properly. The muscle begins to malfunction in this restrictive cage. Literally starved for energy, the muscle atrophies and begins to spasm and twitch. Soon, even the gentlest of pressure becomes unbearable.
When those constricting cages of fascia are connected to joints, they can pull on tendons and ligaments, impeding the proper function of the joint itself. This increases instability of the joint, greatly increasing the changes of a subluxation or dislocation of the joint along with a possible tear.
For fibromyalgia sufferers, this study suggests a strong connection between fascia and the neurological problems associated with Fibromyalgia: Fascial Plasticity – A New Neurobiological Explanation. Dr. Schierling, a leading expert in the study and treatment of fascia through chiropracty shares this philosophy and does an exceptional job of discussing the issues of fascia and chronic pain syndromes. I highly recommend this article to expand your understanding of this topic. Sine it’s so well covered, I won’t be taking a lot of time to discuss it here, but I do strongly encourage interested parties to take a deep dive into Schierling’s work, as he is simply brilliant and you will learn a great deal from him.
Why Fascia Therapy Helps
Fascia therapy seeks to break down this overgrowth of fascia, freeing up the muscles and allowing them and all corresponding connective and nerve tissue to heal and function properly. Once the muscles are freed from this constricting cage, muscle pain is eased, nerves heal and begin to receive signals properly, corresponding connective tissue and joints function properly, restoring balance and coordination. According to a recent article put out by Dr. Schierling, fascia itself is actually partly responsible for proprioception, so healthy fascia is especially important in this aspect.
A Proven Device Used for Fascia Therapy
The device I use was recommended by another woman with EDS in a holistic EDS treatment group I belong to and those of us in the group who have been doing these treatments religiously have all reported positive strides in our progress.
Trials were recently completed on the device and while the full findings have yet to be published, some preliminary findings have been released. The article provides some great details about how it changes the biology and aids the body after just 90 days of use. It can be found here. This section of Black’s Blog provides a detailed accounting of the many ways fascia work is known to effect the body.
The device, called a FasciaBlaster, is marketed primarily to rid yourself of cellulite and let me tell you, it works for that, but what it does for chronic pain and the other symptoms above is what it is truly treasured for by most users I come across. Of course it’s claims that it wipes out cellulite are also valid. That’s because cellulite is created by dysfunctional fascia and if you have EDS, you may have more than your fair share, like me. The dimples and lumps that make up cellulite are the skin being pulled unnaturally by these bundles of fascia, almost like stitches gathered in cloth.
Of course cellulite isn’t the reason I’m using it, but it’s a nice bonus. Another bonus is that you can actually sculpt your body with it by targeting specific areas and utilizing the fat lysing technique (contracting the muscles during treatments), once your fascia have been properly prepped after several blasting sessions. The inventor, a sports medicine guru named Ashley Black has videos that will show you how if you’re interested. Be aware that this will NOT break up fascia, as the muscles must be relaxed during treatment for the effective breakdown of fascia and of course this is what will give you the most needed health benefits. Still, if you seek to lose weight and are having the same difficulties I am, you may want to consider adding fat lysing to your therapy once your fascia are in decent shape. I myself have just begun these treatments and they’re going quite well.
The Mini2, shown above is just one of a few versions of the FasciaBlasting devices that Ashley Black has created. At this point, she’s come out with so many, that I decided to put together this buying guide which explains what each model is best used for so you can get those that suit your purposes best.
If you’re new to blasting, see my FasciaBlaster Buying Guide before making your first blaster purchase. Then be sure to check out my 23 Tips for FasciaBlasting specifically for spoonies to make sure you’re getitng the most of your new tool.
Also be sure to take a look at the other posts I’ve made about FasciaBlasting: