Massage the Full Length of Muscle

437685_lowLet’s say you have a big, beefy athlete of a client on the table, with lots of delicious areas to work on. You dive in. You get the belly of the muscles. You get into the soleus, work their erectors. You proceed to work on their arms and get into the deltoids. Everything’s great, but you have to ask yourself: are you massaging the whole muscle?

I find that, a lot of times, therapists will focus on the belly of the muscle, spending lots and lots of time getting in there: fluffing, buffing, twisting, turning, compressions, and such, but not tracing the muscle all the way to its origins or insertions. It is important to recognize that a muscle has its own intelligence, and when you touch any part of it, the rest of it wants to be touched, as well. If you’re going to use a technique, be sure you use it to work the full length of the muscle, to its tendon and its attachment point. The muscle doesn’t end in the middle. It ends where it ends, and it starts where it starts. Go from end to end, and your clients will love you even more-so.

7 thoughts on “Massage the Full Length of Muscle

  1. ThumbsOfSteel

    I love this wisdom!!
    I have been intuitively exploring the origin/insertion points with GREAT EFFECT on my deep tissue clients, and yes indeed, they do appreciate that scrupulosity in my work!
    I’ve had some Amazing releases exploring this technique, resulting in faithful, recurring clients.
    This is a skill that will set you apart from the pack, truly!
    Thank you for this!

  2. Tim McGrath

    Great stuff. I would add the effectiveness of pin and stretch, “pin” the muscle at the tendonous attachment with one hand and eccentrically stretch it with the other hand, tendons also contain the Golgi tendon organ, controlled pressure on the tendon can help release hypertonic muscles. So great to learn from the body’s incredible wisdom.

    Tim McGrath LMT

  3. Anthony

    Omg please say it ain’t so. Please say your kidding no one in my profession should ever need to be told to work from tenden to tenden. They should be focused on not missing even one fiber of every mussel in the body! how could any one flame to care about anyone they have ever touched if they don’t do this simple thing. How did that incompetent ignorant fool get into a massage school much less pass a test. Shut down that school and report the teacher now!!!

  4. Val Lawrence

    I ABSOLUTELY BELIEVE WHAT YOUR SAYING this article says it all We who do this need to recognize the power of touchand what a gift we have to impart the best work. God gave us the ability to find the bad and the good so use it the best you can.
    Cmt Valerie Lawrence


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