What is fascia? Fascia is a fibrolastic membrane that covers and connect the entire interior of the body (muscles, bones, ligaments, organs, blood vessels, etc..) It forms between fifty to sixty percent of the muscle mass. It is a dense and rich in collagen fibers connective tissue. The fascia is viscoelastic. That is to say, it has a dual property is viscous and elastic. Fascia is filled with sensory receptors.
Take the example of a steak, the fat that is around it is actually the fascia. It is allowing the steak to remain in one piece
If you remove all fat (fascia), the steak will have no consistency. It will fall during cooking. This is the fascia that gives shape to this steak.The same goes for the human body. It is because of the fascia that we can stand upright. Without fascia our bodies would collapse with gravity.
Fascia And Chronique pain!
You must be wondering what is the relationship between your fascia, chronic pain, sciatica and your back pain?
The fascia may well be responsible for your pain! Yes! This could well be the cause of your problems! Why do so many people who suffer from pain, fail to find relief, despite having consulted various health care professionals? Yet, they were told that there was nothing abnormal with them, after their medical examinations, even x-rays did not show anything unusual, yet they are still in pain! You see, fascia is composed of a (semi-liquid) viscous substance that acts as a barrier between the muscles. This substance helps the muscle fibers to slide between each other and serves to hydrate muscle tissue. When fascia is in a normal state, it allows muscles to have a better flexibility and range of motion.
But what does happen when the fascia is subjected to stress, a fall, an injury or even a sedentary position?
The fascia will simply become dehydrated and lose its viscosity and elasticity. Therefore, the muscle fibers will tend to stick together instead of sliding easily. You might feel pain, because the fascia tends to compress nerves, blood vessels, as well as making your muscles become tight. The fascia is filled with sensory receptors. These receptors are required for generating the sensory information necessary to regulate the movement and posture.
Some functions of Fascia:
- Responsible for the body shape.
- Increase the muscular strength.
- Provides an infrastructure to different systems of the human body.
- It serves as shock absorber on impact or fall.
Here’s a video of Gil Hedley, Ph.D., professor of anatomy speaking of “FUZZ” (Fascia)
Fascia is very important! It supports your muscles and skeletal structure giving your body shape and allowing to stand upright.
I hope this information is helpful!
Thanks for reading!
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By: Michel Bourgeois, Licensed Massage Therapist & Energy Kinesiologist in Santa Monica area