AIS Corner

AIS Education

First Blog of 2021 Better Days to Come!!

This has been a very challenging year for the whole bodywork/massage industry or any personal service business. Now it is time to move forward and adjust to a new norm which we will all have a part in creating. I closed my clinic and I am now back to teaching CE’s and working privately with Active Isolated Stretching sharing the work of Aaron Mattes.

I thought it would be appropriate to share a few stretches for the neck to let go of some good old Covid 19 stress.

Here are a few stretches that can be done from a massage table and incorporated into your current sessions. I have found with being a massage therapist for over 25 years the neck is a very guarded area and building confidence in your client to trust movement again is essential.

Lateral Neck Flection Stretch:

Technique

Client will lay on their side dropping lower arm and head off the table, they will then lift their head laterally. Apply downward pressure on the shoulder toward the foot of the table to keep the shoulder from shrugging and create space for better neck movement.

Muscles Stretched

The three scalenes, sternocleidomastoid, erector spinae, and prevertebral muscles

Muscles Contracted

Same muscles (antagonist) opposite side

 

Neck Extension

 

Technique

Client will be laying prone on the table with arms hanging off table and holding on to the table legs. They will drop their head down then move into extension while you support at C-7 to isolate the movement.

Muscles Stretched

Upper erector spinae, splenius cervicis, splenius capitis, semispinalis cervicis and semi- spinalis capitis

Muscles Contracted

Sternocleidomastoid and prevertebral

Feel free to check back in for Active Isolated Stretching posts and let us know if you have any muscle you would like us to cover.

Written by: Bruce Baltz LMT

Spiriphysical, LLC

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AIS: Lateral Hip Stretch

Over the past 2 newsletters, we have been looking at the hips/pelvic girdle and some of the primary muscles and how to stretch them. We will now be looking at several muscles on the outside of the hip (lateral side of the femur). Some of these soft-tissue attachments travel from the hip and crosses the knee. One specifically we will be focusing on is a long tendinis like structure (fascial tissue) called the IT band. In order to stretch this tendon, the leg you are stretching must have a locked knee and the movement must come from the hip.  [···]

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Active Isolated Stretching: Shoulder adduction and abduction

Active Isolated Stretching works with 3 basic principles

  • Contract the apposing muscle to send a signal to let go to the muscle you want to stretch
  • In order to increase the stretch apply light pressure at the end of range of motion and hold for 2 seconds
  • Allow the muscle to relax into a neutral position after each repetition

 [···]

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Active Isolated Stretching: Pectoralis Major Stretch

Active Isolated Stretching works with 3 basic principles

  • Contract the apposing muscle to send a signal to let go to the muscle you want to stretch
  • In order to increase the stretch apply light pressure at the end of range of motion and hold for 2 seconds
  • Allow the muscle to relax into a neutral position after each repetition

 [···]

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Active Isolated Stretching: wrist adduction and abduction

Active Isolated Stretching works with 3 basic principles

  • Contract the apposing muscle to send a signal to let go to the muscle you want to stretch
  • In order to increase the stretch apply light pressure at the end of range of motion and hold for 2 seconds
  • Allow the muscle to relax into a neutral position after each repetition

 [···]

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Active Isolated Stretching: Hands and Fingers

In following the theme with arm care we can’t ignore the hands and fingers. There is very little we do without the closure of our hands from opening a door, picking up a bag to any eye hand coordination sport. When joints stop moving they can no longer function which leads to instability and muscle weakness.   [···]

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