Running, golfing, tennis walking, soccer, and work-related movements can over time lead to muscle tightness, pain, the loss of strength and reduced range of motion, causing issues like headaches, back pain, neck pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, shin splints, tennis elbow, shoulder pain, sciatica, plantar fasciitis and knee pain.
Active Release Techniques (ART) is a patented state of the art soft tissue, movement-based massage treatment. ART is extremely effective in locating the cause of soft tissue discomfort and effectively resolving it. ART is truly the gold standard when it comes to soft tissue manipulation. It is very different from any other soft tissue technique in that it is active, effective and a complete system.
First the provider listens to the patient's issues to understand what causes the discomfort. Second there is a hands-on evaluation via palpation, the provider is searching for abnormalities in tissue texture, movement and function and seeing if he can reproduce the symptom. Once the structures are identified the provider follows a series of hands-on ART protocols to alleviate the patient's condition.
So, how does it work? Muscles are composed of tiny filaments of tissue that run parallel to one another, allowing each muscle to move freely. When a muscle is injured these filaments tear. Some muscle tissue injuries are sudden like tears and sprain/ strains. Others are the result of cumulative trauma like carpal tunnel syndrome, tendonitis and bursitis. Regardless of the cause the body reacts to the injury in a similar way, by filling the damaged area with inferior tissue known as fibrous adhesions. Adhesions can develop between muscles or within muscles. Still the result is the same, the once parallel filaments of muscle tissue get bound together so they no longer slide and glide freely, impairing movement and causing pain. ART is the first and only treatment designed specifically to treat these soft tissue problems. Combining an understanding of biomechanics and a unique hands-on touch (tension to the tissue) along with precise movements performed by the patient and provider, ART allows the practitioner to go right to the heart of the problem and resolve it quickly and effectively.
ART does not utilize a single, cookie-cutter approach. Each session is actually a combination of examination and treatment. ART providers are trained in over 500 specific treatment protocols to identify and correct each patient's individual problems. Practitioners undergo extensive hands-on training and practical examinations to meet the board certified credentialed ART status. ART was developed, refined and patented by P. Michael Leahy, DC, CCSP. Members of the College of Providers are the only ones permitted to use the term Active Release Technique (ART) and the associated protocols.