Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization

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Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization is a technique in which the practitioner uses a hand held instrument to treat soft tissue injuries. IASTM is a form of deep tissue massage that is thought to remodel soft tissue at the cellular level, and promote quicker healing time. This is believed to be accomplished through a process in the body called “mechanotransduction”. This is a fancy way of saying that when the body senses a mechanical stimulus it responds with a biochemical reaction.

In the case of IASTM, the instrument used acts as the mechanical stimulus and creates a controlled microtrauma to the targeted area. This microtrauma creates a localized inflammatory response that then signals the body to create a cascade of healing activity. IASTM has been shown to facilitate the formation of new extracellular proteins such as collagen. Not only does it increase the number of these proteins, but also facilitates healthy re-alignment of the fibers that make up the matrix of our cells. Contact our Gilbert AZ or Tempe AZ chiropractors at Axis Spine and Sport today to see how IASTM can help you.

What to expect from the treatment

Due to the targeted nature of IASTM each specific lesion is only treated for roughly 30-90 seconds, therefore, the treatment is relatively quick. The practitioner will glide an ergonomically designed tool over the area of complaint with moderate pressure until he feels that the adhesions have released and that the tone of the muscle has softened. It is common for the patient to feel a “crunchy” feeling as the practitioner glides over the area, these are the adhesions within the scar tissue, that will dissipate as the body responds.

Due to the microtrauma created, it is common to see some redness or light to moderate bruising called “petechie” following treatment. This is due to the localized inflammatory response and typically goes away with in a day or two. This is a sign that the healing process is taking place and that the treatment is doing its job. This response varies from person to person, and typically is no cause for concern.

Is IASTM right for me?

Spinal pain and stiffiness, tendonosis, trigger finger, shin spints, and plantar facities are just a few of the common conditions that benefit from IASTM. Additionally, athletes, post-surgical patients, and those with chronic inflammation have shown great results with this therapy.
As always your doctor at Axis Spine and Sport will determine the safest and most effective modalities for you based off of your initial exam and history however, IASTM is safe and effective for most people.

IASTM is a great way to reduce muscle tension, get deep into the tissues and heal on a cellular level. Due to the shape and size of the tool, your practitioner is able to reach areas that are difficult to reach with traditional massage or manual techniques, adding to its wide array of healing benefits. “Scrape” away years of scar tissue in just a few minutes and experience how great your body can feel with IASTM in Gilbert AZ and Tempe AZ!