I have recently completed an intensive course on deep myofascial/muscular massage for the neck, shoulder and scapular (shoulder blade) region.
Although no therapy is ever 100% successful, I have been quite pleased with the results in reducing pain and improving mobility in the shoulder so far, particularly in those of my patients where I felt that we had hit a plateau, and had ceased to make further improvements.
It is certainly not a treatment for the faint hearted; deep soft tissue work, particularly on chronically tight, painful shoulders can be uncomfortable, as fibrotic muscle is very sensitive to work on.
It is imperative that the patient feels in control of the treatment and can say if it is becoming uncomfortable or too painful for them. Even if the area is very sensitive, the treatment can be adjusted to work within a patient’s comfort zone, although some stiffness and soreness can occur for 24-48 hours after treatment – I know it did on me.
In some ways this takes me back to my student days, when I had severe back and neck pain and was treated by a local Osteopath who had studied under Ida Rolf. Rolfing, is a total body, deep soft tissue treatment, very popular in the 1970’s. It certainly cured me, and I remained out of pain for many years, although decades of Osteopathy – and Morris dancing – have finally taken their toll on my shoulders and knees! I know that, for me, deep work on tight fibrotic muscles can be very effective and long lasting.
I will be introducing NMR alongside my Neil-Asher shoulder work, as I feel these complement each other well, and will be monitoring the patients who have opted for this treatment, to see if their response bears out the NMR claims, and my own experience.
Watch this space!