Have you had a chronic pain issue resulting from a sport or other injury? Do you want to make sure you never do? Somatics helps with chronic pain associated with injury and can alleviate pain that seems like it will never go away. The sessions help you achieve success and the personal at-home exercises help to maintain as well as prevent future injury.
Clinical Somatics doesn't only correct chronic contractions that underly the majority of chronic pain conditions. It also corrects misalignments, muscular mis-firings, and habituated muscular mis-use and tensions which lead to some of the most common sports injuries and other movement injuries.
For example, many knee injuries result from problems not only in the knee joint but also the quadricepts and other surrounding and support muscles. For the knees to perform their essential functions, they must be able to both fully flex and extend through their complete range of motion. Opposing muscles must perform in a coordinated fashion so as to not create poor or dangerous tracking or imbalances. Powerful muscles of locomotion (running, walking, jumping) must contract at the correct rates to provide sufficent (but not too much) power but also proper landing and load handling. Most of all, the knee's most critical function of being one of the body's biggest shock absorbers is completely dependent on the joint's ability to release and flex or bounce at the appropriate rate each and every time your foot touches the ground.
Imagine if each time your car moved forward, or especially when it hit a bump or drove into a dip in the pavement, any one of the shock absorbers or struts that are the cushions between the wheels and the body froze up and didn't provide the bounce which cushions the blow of the pavement like a pillow; or imagine if the shock absorbers tried to bounce but were bent crooked like a misaligned knee joint and could not move freely. Or imagine if you dropped a coffee cup on a hard tile floor instead of on a pillow or carpeting. In these cases, the natural force of hitting the ground would send shockwaves up through the car or coffee cup, resulting in an immediate break or, if not, then a gradual accumulation of damage that would weaken the structure and either eventually break it or create conditions where it could easily suffer from some other blow or injury.
That is what happens to the knee joint when the muscles and nervous system are compromised by chronic contraction, misalignment, or misuse caused by sensory-motor-amnesia and other somatic problems. People may experience chronic knee pain, hip or back pain, or other soreness, and eventually progress to failure in the knee. Others may not detect anything at all, and their strength as a trained athlete may even mask the accumulation of injuries from joint misalignment. Others may notice as they age that their knees hurt more and more when they continue with their normal fitness routine; and they may typically blame this on degeneration, weakness, or aging of the joint or focus on whether or not their workout surfaces are high or low impact. Runners, aerobic exercisers, dancers, and others may need to shift to only low-impact surfaces (or muscle through on high-impact surfaces and feel the consequences); however, typically this is not a matter of the surface being to hard, so much as your body having become stiffer and less shock-absorbing due to tight and misaligned muscles and joints.
These same phenomena apply to other joints and areas of injury in the body, from athletic pursuits or even from more casual or light-duty activity of daily movement. Think about the same issues of shock absorption, alignment, and tracking of the muscles and movement pathways in the back, rotational muscles of the trunk, the shoulder joints, neck, the elbows, wrists, and ankles. Think about these compromising and being comprised during running; throwing a ball; swinging a bat, racket, or club; swimming; jumping; catching or otherwise managing a ball or other weight. Imagine, for example, the forces against misaligned or rigid joints and muscles when applying enough force to pitch a 90 mile-an-hour fast ball. Or the professional or even casual athlete with a poor aligned and poorly tracking ankle joint running, pounding, and launching against pavement, a hard court, or softer but uneven ground. Or an inflexible, compromised torso and shoulder when putting power into swinging a bat or racket.
Clinical Somatics is designed to correct these conditions quickly and easily. Easy but precise targeted re-training of the nervous system will correct muscle tone, joint alignment, and use patterns and tracking to create an athletic vehicle that both more effective at shock absorption and more accurate at using each limb and joint effectively for maximum efficiency and minimum exposure to injury.
Muscle & Connective Tissue Injury
Whether you are a professional athlete, someone who works out or does yoga, or simply walks to work or works in the garden, you may encounter strains or tears of the muscles or connective tissue (tendons, ligaments, and fascia). Regardless of your level of fitness, the conditions that lead to this are similar: The muscles and tissue is pulled harder, faster, and/or farther than it is currently capable of stretching. Frequently, this is not about being pulled to far or having muscles that are not strong enough, but instead because the muscles themselves are being held chronically tight. This will result in two possible conditions (or both simultaneously): One, the muscles will be in state of being shortened or "pre-stretched", so already that much closer to the verge being over-stretched or torn — just imagine a rubber band already held tight. Two, the shortened muscles then pull and create unncessary and damaging tension in the tendons and other connective tissue — effectively playing a game of tug of war between your muscles and bones — consequently creating conditions that may lead to strain, tearing, or other damage, or even creating the damage themselves.
Contrary to popular understanding, this is not primarily a problem with the tissue, temperature of the room, or a lack of stretching. Most of all, it is a result of how the body's muscular control systems are working — are they firining and maintaining tonus in a balanced and efficient fashion, and are they coordinating movement and other use of the muscle appropriately for each task or posture. You can stretch the muscles all you want, but as research is now showing it may not help or may even increase your risk of injury. This is because tight muscles are just a helpless victim of how your motor control systems are managing them. Pulling muscle from the outside is like engaging in a tug of war with your internal signals.
Reducing or eliminating chronic muscle tension and increasing flexibility is probably the most common reason people come for Clinical Somatics treatment or exercises....With good reason, as we can offer people the most rapid and safe method of addressed musclar contraction and flexibilty issues.
If you have already injured yourself, remember that in many cases the conditons in your body and nervous system that led to the injury may still be present. If so, healing from that injury may be interfered with significantly. For example, a muscle pull that was caused by chronic resting muscle tension will still be under that same strain. Imagine trying to repair a ripped sweater if it is still actively being pulled apart — muscles will suffer similarly. The same is true for strains, sprains, and tears of connective tissue such as tendons, ligaments, and fascia. Even if you sustained these injuries through some outside force or other unavoidable event (and, of course, especially if the injury did involve existing musculoskeletal tension or imbalances), any strain, imbalance, or pull from chronic muscle tension will also slow this kind of tissue healing and re-strengthening. In fact, it may be the reason, say, a muscle or tendon doesn't fully heal from an injury and seems like a permanent problem. Furthermore, even if your muscles were in a perfect state of balance prior to sustaining an injury, it is virtually unavoidable that one side-affect of the injury will be reactive musculoskeletal contractions; if that is the case, then Somatics is needed to address this (and prevent it from hampering recovery) even if it was not a pre-existing condition.
Clinical Somatics is necessary before injury to optimize performance and injury avoidance, and often either helpful or indispensible if an injury has occured.