You hear a lot about muscle memory when it comes to building muscle but did you know that it is also the key to healing from an injury? Every year people get injured from falls, car accidents, and surgery with months to years of pain afterwards. What very few people tell you is that once there is an injury in an area, the muscles cramp to protect the joint. It’s a self defense mechanism.
Example: You're in a car accident. Your body goes forward and your neck and shoulder muscles cramp to protect the skeletal system and preserve the body. The muscles do not know if there is going to be another accident so they stay cramped to protect the body. This also works to keep you from moving a joint and possibly causing more damage.
But why does it still do this weeks and months later? Because nothing was done to change the muscle’s memory. The first therapy you are usually sent to is physical therapy, PT moves and strengthens the muscles around the injury. The problem is that this can backfire and actually cause more pain and injury if the body is not healed enough to move yet. I have seen many people go to PT too fast and end up having to quit or in surgery. So this reinforces the muscle’s memory to stay cramped to protect the body. But why does it continue even years later?
Remember the soldiers that didn’t know the Civil War was over and kept fighting? That is what your muscles are doing. But now it has become your tension spot and when ever you are stressed out, the area cramps.
The solution NO ONE tells you about? Massage Therapy! Sounds so simple yet few practitioners recommend it. I don’t know if they feel it is too simple or feel threatened but they almost never send clients for massage and yet that is the exact therapy that will work.
Massage over time can physically bring back the body to pre injury condition. Why? Because massage changes the muscle memory. It relaxes the muscles, soothes, and then stretches them. It tells the muscle that it is safe and it does not have to protect the body anymore. It can let go.
It is a relatively short process of anywhere from 2-8 weeks. You must have a very trained/experienced massage therapist that understands that you must build trust from the muscles before trying to get them to let go. If pushed too hard or stretched too far it can cause extreme pain and more cramping because it will reinforce the war is not over.
Massage does best if done on a consistent basis of once or twice a week for a few weeks and then 1-2 times a month to maintain. If the injury is new, I recommend doing 30 minutes sessions and than gradually building up to a 60 minute massage.
I have been a massage therapist for over 11 years and have seen so many people get back to normal after working with me. Some up to 5 years after the initial injury.
I have developed a new massage technique called Rapha Technique. It was designed for athletes and injuries as there is a need for recovery that works WITH your body, not against it.
For more details go to my website rapha-massage.com There is an entire page of reviews.
Then give me a call to set up an appointment and we can get started on your recover today!