What do tennis elbow and cellulite have in common? Behind both are agglutinated fasciae. We explain how you can loosen fasciae.
Fascia keeps your whole body in shape
There are many different opinions about fascia in the media. Now there is clarity in the information jungle: We have compiled the essential facts about connective tissue and fascia training for you.
What are fasciae?
From your head to your toes – fasciae are everywhere. And they have some really important jobs. Among other things, they literally get us in shape: The ribbon-like, very tear-resistant collagen-rich connective tissue wraps the brain, bones, muscles as well as individual muscle fibers and holds internal organs together. In the past, their importance was underestimated: at most, the fasciae received attention when cellulite was a concern. Yet the fine, tough skins have far more influence on the body. Scientists even refer to fascia tissue as one of our most important sensory organs: this is where the largest number of receptors and nerve cells gather.
Why can fascia stick together?
In order for your fascia to remain stable and elastic, you need movement. Otherwise, their structure will stick together or harden, and the body will lose mobility. Do you have to sit a lot in your job and do you complain about pain in your neck, shoulders or back? Today, we know that this is mostly due to adhesions in the fascia. If the flexibility of muscle fibers is restricted, the affected nerves can be squeezed. This also results in pain.
It has been proven that agglutinated fasciae are the most common reason for back problems. Overloading damages the connective tissue just as much as no movement at all. By the way, it is usually not the muscles that are affected: even tennis elbow is nothing more than agglutinated fascia tissue.
What does stress have to do with fascia?
Are you constantly under stress? Stress is another factor that can lead to adhesions of fascia. Then hormones put fascia under tension without involving the muscles. Once the external pressure is over, the connective tissue relaxes again. It is different with chronic stress: then the fasciae lose their flexibility like a permanently stretched rubber band – they harden, mobility is reduced, tension and pain occur. The good news is: you can do something about it.
What can you do about stuck fascia?
Fascia training is more than a fitness trend that comes and goes. Rather, it is consistently gaining acceptance as an effective supplement to muscle training. Performed regularly, it stimulates connective tissue cells to replace old collagen fibers with new ones.
Five tips against fascia adhesions and pain.
- Take care of your fitness, move as often as possible and exercise your muscles.
- Plan enough recovery breaks during periods of stress.
- Revitalize your fascia tissue with a fascia roller. Top model Barbara Meier tells you how to do this here in the video. With the exercises you release tension and your muscles regenerate faster. The practical: You can take the fascia roller anywhere.
- Choose the right degree of hardness for your fascia roller. Are you a beginner and rather sensitive to pain? Then opt for a roller that is as soft as possible. The higher your performance level and the less sensitive you are to pain, the harder the fascia roller can be.
- Also strengthen your fascia through soft, dynamic movements, e.g. in yoga, Pilates or Tai Chi. They are an ideal complement to the exercises with the roller.