The fascial system is a network of many different types of tissue with various functions. We have fascia that encase and connect groups of muscles. We have fascia that hold all of our organs in place. Our tendons and ligaments are also a form of fascia. Fascia is what really makes our musculoskeletal system, in fact, a system.
The significance of fascial treatment is misunderstood. In 1979, Ida Rolf brought to America a technique to relieve pressure in the fascia (known as "Rolfing"), but over the last 25 years Guy Voyer, DO, of Marseilles, France, has been developing special stretching techniques that focus on the fascia of every major muscle group in the body.
Myofascial stretching can be used to help correct dysfunction and relieve pains caused by traumatized tissue after automobile collisions and athletic injuries. Other forms of stretching focus solely on a specific muscle rather than the entire dysfuntional system. The dysfunctional system may involve several muscles and connective tissue, as well as the fascial container that surrounds them.
Staying hydrated, following sound exercise principles, and maintaining a balanced fascial system can lead to a substantially healthier lifestyle and a more positive outlook toward life.