I get questions all the time about soft-tissue work. Do I need it? What methods are best? How can I find a good practitioner?
Unfortunately, these aren’t easy questions to answer. Chances are if you train consistently, whether that’s running, biking, sports, or hitting the iron, you could probably benefit from soft-tissue work. I can honestly say I’ve never seen anyone who couldn’t use a little tune-up.
Now, as far as which methods are best, this is largely dependent upon where you need treatments, how beat up you are, and a host of other factors. I actually discussed this to some degree in my knee manual; here’s a very brief synopsis:
– For general work and maintenance, deep tissue massage or SMR is good.
– For tendon based issues, or those close to bony prominences, you need something more exact. In this case, ART or tool-based methods work well. Bill and I are both big fans of the STARR tool (www.starrtool.com).
– If you need quick, cheap and dirty, SMR is always an option. After all, not everyone can afford massage or ART on a regular basis!
So if I was going to really water this down, here’s what I’d recommend:
– If you’re generally healthy and just need tune-ups, deep tissue massage and/or SMR.
– If you have a specific issue, look into ART or possibly tool-based methods.
The link was broken for a little while with the new site, so if you’re interested in downloading my FREE SMR e-manual you can do so by following the link below:
As well, you can find an ART provider in your area by going to www.ActiveRelease.com.
The harder you play, the harder you need to recover. Soft-tissue work is one way to keep yourself healthy and in the game!