Active Release Technique
What Is Active Release Technique?
Active release technique (ART) is treatment of the body’s soft tissue through manipulation and movements designed to increase the range of motion and break up scar tissue. The technique was developed by Dr. Michael Leahy, a chiropractic sports physician over 30 years ago.
The idea behind the technique is to increase range of motion by reducing tension and spasm in the involved muscles. ART is performed by trained therapists, chiropractors, osteopaths, and physicians who specialize in physical medicine.
When performed properly ART can reduce adhesions and spasms while restoring ranges of motion in a few sessions. Initially there may be some discomfort during and after the treatment. Application of local coolant spray or ice massage can help reduce the pain from treatment.
What Conditions Does ART Treat?
Active release is most effectively used to treat myofascial scar tissue and adhesions usually resultant from trauma.
Through applying the technique, the therapist can reduce adhesions and increase active range of motion to an area. Most patients find the therapy pain tolerable and relaxing after it is performed.
ART has effectively treated rotator cuff tendinopathy, wrist flexor and extensor tendinopathy, psoas strains, IT band injuries, thigh and hamstring strains, calf strains, cervical and lumbar strains and more.
How is Active Release Administered?
The trained physical therapist, massage therapist or chiropractor physician are the most likely individuals trained in ART. They will use their hands to maneuver the body in the positions necessary to actively release the tissues being treated.
In example, working on the neck can be done supine or seated where the patients head and shoulders are maneuvered in opposing directions to stretch the tissues and release the adhesions.
The hip joint has numerous muscles surrounding it that can acquire adhesions and trigger points and ART works well to reduce the pain and spasms.
What Will My Life Look Like After Active Release Technique Sessions?
Many athletes utilize ART practitioners since the technique is effective and reliable. For example, runners with IT band issues, soccer players with hip pain or hamstring injuries, athletes with calf injuries, golfers with lower back pain and weightlifters with shoulder or rotator cuff injuries. ART works for all these injuries because releasing the muscles and fascia help restore normal function.
Following the treatment protocol through to achieve goals of increased ranges of motion, decreased pain and stiffness, and increased flexibility, life after sessions of ART looks and feels better.
Most patients have good outcomes and can resume living healthy active lifestyles.
Active Release Technique Treatment Steps
2. Get Adjusted
Based on your circumstances, a specific treatment plan will be implemented to correct your spine.