Healthcare and Medicine Reference
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uniform resilience and adaptability in the
Superficial Front and Back Lines, and the Lateral
and Spiral Lines before attempting to unravel the
Deep Front Line. Going for deep patterns too
quickly, before loosening the overlying layers,
can result in driving patterns deeper or reducing
the body's coherence, rather than resolving
problems. Once some resilience and balance is
established in the Deep Front Line, return to the
issues remaining in the more superficial lines, and
drape the Arm and Functional Lines over the
rebalanced structure.
• Trajectory. Each move has a trajectory or an arc - a
beginning, a middle, and an end. Each session has
an arc, each series of sessions has an arc, and even
each move has an arc. Know where you are in these
overlapping arcs.
The goals of myofascial or movement work include the
• Complete body image. The client has access to the
information coming from, and motor access to, the
entire kinesthetic body, with minimal areas of
stillness, holding, or 'sensory-motor amnesia'.
• Skeletal alignment and support. The bones are aligned
in a way that allows minimum effort for standing
and action.
• Tensegrity/palintonicity. The myofascial tissues are
balanced around the skeletal structure such that
there is a general evenness of tone, rather than
islands of higher tension or slack tissues. The
opposite of structural integration is structural
• Length. The body lives its full length in both the
trunk and limbs, and in both the muscles and the
joints, rather than moving in shortness and
• Resilience. The ability to bear stress without
breaking, and to resume a balanced existence when
the stress is removed.
• Ability to hold and release somato-emotional charge. The
ability to hold an emotional charge without acting it
out, and to release it into action or simply into
letting go when the time is appropriate.
• Unity of intent with diffuse awareness. Structural
Integration implies the ability to focus on any given
task or perception while maintaining a diffuse
peripheral awareness of whatever is going on
around this focused activity. Focus without
contextual awareness breeds a fanatic; awareness
without focus breeds a space cadet.
• Reduced effort. Reduced effort in standing and
movement - less 'parasitic' tension or unnecessary
compensatory movement involved in any given
• Range of motion. Generosity of movement, less
restriction in any given activity, and that - within
the limits of health, age, history, and genetic make-
up - the full range of human movement is
• Reduced pain. Standing and activity be as free of
structural pain as possible.
Principles of body and hand use
General principles for fascial and myofascial manipula-
tion are as follows:
• Pay attention. Though we tend to pay attention to
how we contact the client or patient, i.e. what is
coming out of your hands toward the client, less
time is given in training to what the practitioner is
feeling, i.e. what is coming up your arm from the
client. Be sure you are attentive to what the tissue is
telling you at all times.
• Layering. Go in only as far as the first layer that
offers resistance, and then work within and along
that layer.
• Pacing. Speed is the enemy of sensitivity; move at
or below the rate of tissue melting.
• Body mechanics. Minimal effort and tension on the
part of the practitioner leads to maximum
sensitivity and conveyance of intent to the client.
Using your weight and 'compound essence of time'
is always better than using your strength to induce
tissue change.
Principles of body mechanics are widely taught
in training and widely ignored in practice.
• Movement. Client movement makes myofascial
work more effective. With each move you make,
seek a movement direction to give the client.
Again, 'put it where it belongs and call for
movement.' The client's movement, even a small
movement, under your hands serves at minimum
two purposes:
- it allows the practitioner to feel with ease in
which level of myofascia he is engaged
- it involves the client actively in the process,
increasing the proprioception from muscle
spindles and stretch receptors.
• Pain. Pain is sensation accompanied by the client's
'motor intention to withdraw'. It is a reason to stop,
let up, or slow down.
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