I've occasionally posted on this blog about my problems with inflexibility, and on my search for methods to treat and improve my range of motion. Previously I wrote a post about Myofascial Release, and how it was the first method I've tried that actually produced significant results. Since then, in a discussion with my kettlebell coach, Josh Conway, I mentioned that I had problems with poor flexibility, and that I had had some success in treating it with Myofascial Release. He went on to describe a form of Myofascial Release called the Graston Technique. Jeff had had great success with this treatment, and clearly this was something worth exploring. Eventually I ended up trying it, and so far the results have been nothing less than spectacular.
To put it very simply, the Gaston Technique is Myofascial Release on steroids. The practitioner uses metal tools to help break up the myofascial scaring that can be a cause of poor flexibility. In my case, it has become increasingly obvious that myofacsial scaring in the primary cause of my problems with inflexibility, and it also the reason why I had very little success with stretching and Active Release Technique.
A word of warning, the Gaston Technique is not for the feint of heart. My experience has been that the treatments range from extremely uncomfortable to extremely painful. My experience with the Gaston Technique is not necessarily typical, but even if it is, if you can grit your teeth for a few minutes of extreme discomfort, the long term results will probably be worth the short term pain.
If you live in the greater Boston area, and would like to try the Gaston Technique, I would like to recommend Dr. Mui of Mui Chiropractic in West Newton, MA. Using the Gaston Technique, with one treatment Dr. Mui managed to do more to improve my flexibility than everything else I've tried over the past 25+ years.
Dr. Mui's Information:
437 Cherry Street,
West Newton, MA, 02465
For Further Reading:
Your Pose Running Coach's Blog: Myofascial Release for Improved Flexibility