Even some of the world’s most valued masterpieces have imperfections. Our bodies are no different. Oh, how those overused muscles can quickly remind us that even though we are all masterpieces, we are each still a work in progress. If overused and strained muscles are left untreated, pulls and tears (complete or micro) may result. The body will then create dense, fibrous tissue as a means of healing and protecting the injured area(s). Unfortunately, that tough scar tissue prevents movement in soft tissues that would otherwise move freely. The results include shorter and weakened muscles, increased tension on tendons and ligaments, nerve entrapment, reduced range of motion, loss of strength and (big shocker) pain…and most likely, a lot of it. If only there was a therapeutic technique that could treat these soft tissue disorders quickly, effectively and permanently. Ahhhh, but there is such a treatment option available to you at Sport + Spine! Introducing ART®.
Active Release Techniques® (or ART) was developed by Dr. P. Michael Leahy over 30 years ago while he was working with elite athletes with soft tissue disorders who were looking to return to peak performance as quickly as possible. So, how does it work? While the patient makes very specific movements, the therapist will apply direct tension and pressure, releasing the trigger point while the muscle is in motion. Unlike other manual therapies, the movement of the muscle while deep tissue massage is applied triggers neuromuscular re-education. In other words, ART retrains the neuromuscular system (nerves and muscles) to function properly again.
We have two outstanding therapists on staff certified in Upper Extremity ART: Kiley Sutter (physical therapist) and Melanie Cohavi (massage therapist). When asked how her patients have been responding to ART, Kiley says that the results have been very positive, particularly with some of her patients suffering from nerve entrapments. “Patients are able to see an immediate impact. We will test their motion prior to receiving ART and then retest again immediately after the treatment. Nearly every time their test motion has improved.” Kiley feels that adding ART to her repertoire has diversified her skill set (which also includes dry needling), allowing her to provide more well-rounded, effective care to her patients.
One of Kiley’s patients, Mary Beth Harnisch, had been suffering with intense neck pain and pain shooting down her right arm, including numbness and tingling in her fingers. She has been seeing Kiley for a couple of weeks and has been receiving ART. Mary Beth is very pleased with the results, noticing significant improvement already.
In addition to all of the highly-effective, hands-on techniques, the innovative dry needling approach, and functional exercises that focus on proper body mechanics and enhanced performance, Sport + Spine is pleased to be able to offer ART to you as another treatment option in our push to provide you with the best care available. After all, you are a masterpiece, a true work of art. We passionately strive to help you feel and perform like one.