Advanced Myofascial Mastery

About a month ago I decided to take a day-long course titled: Advanced Myofascial Mastery. It was taught by a guy by the name of Til Luchau who has been a bodyworker for over 30 years, and who is highly respected in his field.

The course was not what I was expecting.

Instead of a workshop on techniques (though we did learn a few), it was more of a philosophy course. The aim of bodywork, they said, should not be to think that we as massage therapists are moving muscle and tissue and making large physical changes in the patient’s body. We are not moving mountains here, but this is the prevailing assumption.

Studies have come out that show that massage therapy does little to change the structure of muscle and connective tissue. But it makes us feel better, so what then is it actually doing?

The aim, they continued, should be to engage the nervous system. That is where the pain lies. Sure there are muscle knots and muscle tension, but the nervous system is the underlying structure that controls that tension and how we perceive it. The nervous system is the computer of the body, in a sense.

Trauma, injury, pain and tension get left in the nervous system when we experience these things without releasing them. Our body is a series of circuits, and when we feel pain (electricity) we are conditioned to wince, to hold on, and to guard the area so that when the sensation runs through our nerves, we block its motion; it gets stuck inside of us.

What we can do, as massage therapists, is to gently persuade the nervous system to open up. To let that electricity pass through and move.

We can slowly coax that tension away not by force—jamming our elbow into your back to extinguish the knot—but by remaining present with the tension and most importantly, allowing you, the person on the table, to engage their nervous system and allow it to release the pain.

To feel is to heal. It’s not about us being healers or having magic hands, it’s about facilitating your body’s natural healing mechanism, and helping it along its way.

That’s why chiropractic works the way it does. An adjustment that realigns the spine directly affects how we perceive pain. With massage and chiropractic combined, we can gently persuade you into a more whole state of health.

Introducing: Wally Walsh, LMT

Introducing a new addition to the clinic team, Wally Walsh, LMT and Guild Certified Feldenkrais® Practitioner

Wally WalshWe are pleased to introduce Wally Walsh as part of our team at Kelsall Chiropractic. Wally has now been a bodywork professional more than 17 years, with over 12,000 hours of hands-on experience. He has worked successfully with a diverse population of people, including professional athletes, expecting mothers, ‘weekend warriors’, stressed out office workers, actors, musicians, and children. In June of 2014, he completed a four year training to program to become a Certified Feldenkrais® Practitioner, which has greatly expanded his capacity to help clients move better and feel better. “For many years, I have been fascinated by how bodies move, feel and function​.​ ​On a daily basis, I get the pleasure of witnessing human potential in action as I see clients change, adapt, and expand their ability to thrive.​ I’m truly fortunate to have a career that profoundly affects people in such a positive way”.

Read Wally Walsh’s bio here. To schedule an appointment with Wally, contact us today at (503)-223-8719.

Advanced Myofascial Technique Workshop: Neck, Jaw, Head

Each year Kelsall Chiropractic Clinic sponsors its licensed massage therapists (LMT) professional development as a way to continue the learning process and bring new and advanced techniques to our patients. This year team member, Pam Worthington participated in an Advanced-Trainings seminar on the neck, head and jaw.

Advanced-Trainings is a popular organization that conducts continuing education courses in Portland and around the world through Advanced-Trainings.Com and is based in Boulder CO. Their director/trainer Til Luchau is a regular contributor to the trade magazine published by the Associated Bodywork and Massage Professionals and contributes to their series of webinars on such subjects as Ethics, the Nature of Fascia, and The Body/Mind Connection.

The Advanced-Trainings classes specialize in a variety of techniques that can be easily incorporated into a therapist’s tool box. What sets their training apart from other forms of massage training is that many of their techniques are awareness based and ask for the client’s participation. The pressure of practitioner’s hands create a focus in the area of concern. Clients are asked to bring their attention to that area and the tissues around it. The combination of the practitioner’s hands and the client’s attention can result in a softening or release in the tissue.

Clients who benefit from this work might be experiencing neck tension, neck pain, movement restrictions or postural issues. Hands on work by the massage therapist starts by focusing on the outer layers of the neck (cervical sleeve), and proceeds to the inner layers, which include the cervical vertebrae. The purpose of the work is to soften the outer tissue layers of the neck to allow work to be done on the inner layers, in order to release tension, reduce pain and to improve range of motion.

The face can be a microcosm for what is happening in the rest of the body, and some adults hold excessive tension in the jaw. When approaching these areas the bodyworker must use great care and focus to build trust , particularly when working in and around the mouth since a large part of the brain is dedicated to the mouth (speech, sensation, taste).

With hands on training and yearly continuing education and advancement in techniques, we can better serve our patients at Kelsall Chiropractic Clinic . Call to setup an appointment for massage therapy in Portland: (503) 223-8719.