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Fascial Release for Structural Balance 2nd Edition

by James Earls & Thomas Myers

listed in bodywork

[Image: Fascial Release for Structural Balance 2nd Edition]


Manual therapies have come a long way in the last few decades. Not only do these therapies contribute much to the relief of pain and suffering but can now be seen to be pioneering scientific understanding in the musculoskeletal realm. Work which a few decades ago would be regarded as ‘wacky’ is now leading edge.

The Importance of fascia is being increasingly recognised in many therapeutic modalities such as osteopathy, chiropractic, and structural integration. The conventional view of fascia is that of supporting tissue. However with the recognition of key physiological characteristics we can see how important fascia as a communication system, and for short and long term adaptation to external and internal environmental change.

Perhaps the most important advance is the realization that the mechanics of the organism is not the same as the mechanics of say a car or a house. The concept of tensegrity allows us to understand how the organism can remain mobile whilst all it’s components such the viscera remain contained, supported, protected and functional.

The fascial net with the body consisting of gross structures such as aponeuroses down to the microtubules of the cells and having bones suspended within give the organism coherence.

All this is covered in the introduction to the book, which assumes some knowledge but also provides references for further reading including the very valuable Anatomy Trains concept developed by co-author Thomas Myers.

The book then introduces concepts of development and analysis of palpatory skills. This section is well referenced and for the reader new to bodywork especially valuable. This chapter explains how to perceive different tissues and especially fascia and how manipulation may be performed with the cooperation of the patients tissues to get the best response.

Visual examination is referred to as Bodyreading and is introduced in Chapter 3. This is emphasized as part of the assessment process and though not definitive, it is nevertheless extremely important. This is further illustrated as the book progressed with photographic examples.

The rest of the book looks at the body from the feet upwards whilst at the same time emphasising the integrity of the whole person. This incorporates the structure and function of the connective tissue systems. Especially good is how the book integrates the elements into a functional whole.

An excellent example of this is with the foot. The arches are explained and analysed. The bones and their articulations work with well-tensioned ligaments as well as with the muscles of the foot and leg to achieve functionality. Remarkable how this works considering the degree of weight bearing the foot is required to achieve with the range of physical challenges experienced.

Examples such as these allow us to marvel at the extraordinary nature of the human organism. It is also remarkable how little the body breaks down considering all that it is asked to do. However stuff happens and the body will need to repair, adapt and compensate. Whilst this process does not always cause discomfort pain or illness in the short term in the long term these will break down and lead to uncomfortable symptoms and loss of function.

The book is clearly and liberally illustrated with diagrams and pictures showing the relevant anatomy as well as hand positions for performing the techniques. The position of the operator is emphasised so that the techniques can be performed with the comfort of both the patient and practitioner in mind.

In addition to useful information and insights this book is well written with some of the more difficult concepts understandably explained.

Who is this book for? It is essential that the reader has more than a basic understanding of anatomy and physiology. I think if you are starting from scratch as a practitioner this would make a good reference book. If you are an experienced bodyworker then it would be very useful indeed. If you are familiar with structural integration and anatomy trains then it would be an excellent addition to your library.

Those trained along more conventional line such as doctors or physiotherapists could find a work such as this very enlightening.

This book is an excellent contribution to a body of knowledge that not only adds to our understanding of this extraordinary structure but will also contribute to the relief of pain and suffering.

Further Information

Available on Amazon

Jonathan Lawrence
Lotus Publishing / North Atlantic Books
2nd Edition 2017
£24.99 / $34.95
978-1905367764 / 978-1556439377

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