Myotherapy + Remedial Massage
Anyone who has experienced muscular injury or strain can benefit greatly from myotherapy. If you are feeling stiff, sore, tense, and your muscles just feel in ‘knots’ then remedial massage is the answer! And for the mum-to-be, an incredible hands-on experience from an experienced practitioner who is a mum herself.
What is Myotherapy?
At Valley Health Group, our highly experienced Myotherapists incorporate advanced hands-on techniques, injury prevention and exercise prescription into your treatments, to help you achieve your healthcare goals. They work holistically and strategically and really understand the importance of listening and working with you as a team, in delivering the right outcome for you.
Myotherapy is a physical therapy service working with your muscles at a deep tissue level using a variety of muscular techniques. It is often used in conjunction with dry needling. Anyone who has experienced muscular injury or strain can benefit greatly from myotherapy. It is also great for office workers, sports people or anyone with a vocation with the potential to affect their muscles or joints.
The benefits of Myotherapy
Patients who come to us for myotherapy have a range of presenting issues. In today’s demanding work conditions, many people develop postural issues over time that may result in pain, injury, discomfort or stiffness. Myotherapy looks at the interconnectedness of our muscle and surrounding tissue to help address the root cause. We then tailor our hands-on treatments to our patients, using a range of techniques to help:
- Treat injuries, such as occupational overuse syndrome (OOS) or tennis elbow
- Alleviate tension headaches related to muscle tightness
- Bring relief from pain and stiffness
- Relieve strain, aches and numbness or tingling
- Lessen joint pain and stiffness
The difference between Myotherapy and Remedial Massage
At Valley Health Group, we provide both Myotherapy and Remedial Massage Therapy to assist you in reaching your healthcare goals. There are similarities between the two modalities, however there are also some important differences, which set them apart.
- Manual (hands-on) therapy that involves the assessment and treatment of soft tissue injury, including muscles, tendons, ligaments and fascia of the body
- Techniques include: soft tissue manipulation, stretching, myofascial release, trigger point therapy and thermal therapy
- Myotherapists use massage in their treatments where warranted (but not as much massage as remedial massage therapists use in their treatment)
- Myotherapists also use dry needling and joint mobilisation in their treatments (most remedial massage therapists will not, as they are not qualified to do so).
- The Myotherapy course includes extensive dry needling and joint mobilization training, whereas remedial massage therapy courses do not offer this. If a remedial massage therapist wishes to learn dry needling, they must complete separate training, which is not as extensive as the Myotherapy dry needling training offered
- Myotherapists incorporate advanced injury prevention, health and fitness advice and exercise prescription into their sessions
- Myotherapists do not offer relaxation treatments (whereas remedial massage therapists do)
- Myotherapy has its own separate qualifications, including a Bachelor of Health Science (‘Clinical Myotherapy’ or ‘Myotherapy’) or an ‘Advanced Diploma of Myotherapy’. This enables Myotherapists to have a greater understanding of the human body, anatomy and physiology over remedial massage therapists
- Myotherapists are more consultative, educational and holistic in developing their treatment plan: they aim to trace any pain, complaint or discomfort as far as possible back to the original cause, with the goal of healing both the cause of the concern, as well as the symptoms in which they are presenting with
- A Myotherapist has a broader scope of practice than a remedial massage therapist: they carry out a full postural analysis, medical history, range of motion testing and special tests for your presenting complaint in order to help diagnose your condition and formulate treatments plans
Trigger Point Therapy
A trigger point is the “knot” you can feel in your muscles. That niggly little pain you have in your shoulder, or even the cause of that pounding headache. To get a little more technical they are areas of tight muscle tissue (commonly referred to as myofascial trigger points) that are tender to touch, can affect your range of movement, and can cause characteristic referred pain like headaches.
A form of Needling that is specific to treating Trigger points in muscles. It works to release contracted muscles and relieve local and referred muscle pain.
Dry needling is not the same as acupuncture, although there are similarities between the two techniques. The main difference between dry needling and acupuncture is the theory behind why the methods work.
Dry needling is primarily focused on the reduction of pain and restoration of function through the release of myofascial trigger points in the muscle. In comparison, acupuncture focuses on the treatment of medical conditions by restoring the flow of energy (Qi) through critical points in the body (meridians) to restore balance.
Myofascial cupping is a soft tissue therapy that involves the application of decompressed cups on the skin, creating a vacuum effect that lifts up underlying tissues such as the fascia ( connective tissue ) and muscles, blood and other fluid, close to the surface of the skin. Myofascial cupping is typically applied on the back, shoulder, neck, sacrum, hip, abdomen, legs and arms.
Using massage techniques, areas of muscular restriction and tension are located and myofascial cupping techniques are then applied by moving the cups in a gliding motion over the surface of the skin or, where fascial adhesion and trigger points are found, the cups may be left on specific areas for short periods of time to reduce or eliminate those adhesions or trigger points. Cupping therapy is still very effective even if the cups are not left in place for very long.
Remedial Massage aims to treat muscles that are damaged, knotted, tense or immobile. It is useful for a number of problems that affect the muscles, tendons and bones and can address a number of other health problems.
Remedial massage is used to locate and repair damaged areas of the body and speed up the body’s own healing processes.
The pressure applied in this healing treatment can either be strong and deep or gentle and shallow, depending on the problem.
Problems with the muscles can trigger or radiate pain to other parts of the body. Remedial massage aims to trace the original reason for the pain, tackling both the cause of the problem and the symptoms.
A specific form of massage that takes into account the changes a pregnant woman’s body goes through. It is safe from the first weeks right through to your due date. We use a pregnancy pillow for your comfort during treatment.
What to Expect
A Myotherapy consultation will typically commence with thorough history taking followed by various muscle, joint and neurological testing.
Combined with manual palpation of muscles and joints, a Myotherapist aims to identify the cause of one’s pain to ensure quick, effective and long lasting results.
How can Myotherapy or Remedial Massage help you?
Myotherapists treat the cause as well as the symptoms of a wide range of conditions. Some examples of conditions commonly treated by myotherapists are:
- Neck & Back Pain
- TMJ (Jaw) Pain and dysfunction
- Chronic Overuse (RSI)
- Tennis/Golfers elbow
- Joint pain
- Carpal Tunnel
- Knee, hip & ankle pain
- Frozen shoulder
- Elbow & wrist pain
- Plantar Fasciitis
- Chronic Myofascial Pain syndromes
- Flexibility and Postural issues
- Pregnancy and Post Pregnancy pain issues
Do I need a referral?
A referral letter is not necessary to see a Myotherapist unless you are a WorkCover patient. Most myotherapists work in private practices and are usually the first point of call when patients are injured.
Health Fund Rebates
Private health funds provide varying levels of cover for Myotherapy and Remedial Massage treatment. Please contact your health fund for full details of these benefits.
Our amazing myotherapist and remedial massage therapist is Lauren Brennan. Lauren has worked as a Myotherapist for 14+ years. She studied at The Australian College of Sports Therapy and also worked as a lecturer at Holmesglen TAFE. She decided to study Myotherapy after studying ballet though her childhood and loving how the human body functioned and also learning how to treat injuries. She has two crazy daughters and loves nothing more than curling up on the couch with them for a good movie.