What is Fascia?

Fascia is a tough connective tissue which spreads throughout the body in a three-dimensional web from head to foot without interruption. Fascia is a specialized system of the body that has an appearance similar to a spider′s web or a sweater. This connective tissue is very densely woven, covering and interpenetrating every muscle, bone, nerve, artery and vein, as well as, all of our internal organs including the heart, lungs, brain and spinal cord.

Here is a two minute clip of living fascia from the DVD “Strolling Under the Skin” by Dr. Jean-Cleaude Guimbartea, MD.

Fascia plays an important role in the support and function of our bodies, since it surrounds and attaches to all structures. In the normal healthy state fascia has the ability to stretch and move without restriction. When one experiences physical or emotional trauma, scarring, or inflammation, the fascia loses its pliability. It becomes tight, restricted, and a source of tension to the rest of the body.

Trauma, such as a fall, car accident, surgery or just habitual poor posture and repetitive stress injuries has cumulative effects on the body. The changes trauma causes in the fascial system influences comfort and function of our body. Fascial restrictions can exert excessive pressure causing all kinds of symptoms producing pain, headaches or restriction of motion. Fascial restrictions affect our flexibility and stability, and are a determining factor in our ability to withstand stress and perform daily activities.

 

*Used with permission from John F. Barnes
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