One of the main causes of lower back pain comes from our holding patterns in the psoas and the abdomen area below the navel. Holding tension in this area can lead to many ailments and muscle dysfunctions.
Fascia is a structure of connective tissue that goes from head to toe. It surrounds and supports all our internal organs and binds our muscles, blood vessels and nerves together whilst permitting other muscles to slide over each other. When the body holds tension, fascia can build up to help nerve transmission to the area so when tension is held in the psoas area under load conditions, the psoas will naturally dominate other muscles, with MFIT we have various new technique procedures to balance this.
Western cultures spend a lot of their time sat down for prolonged periods in slouch positions. Certain areas will be under contraction all the time, one of these is the psoas which is attached to either side of the five lumbar vertebrae (lower back) and inserts in the lesser trochanter of the femur. It’s primarily a hip flexor so holding in this position for long periods will lead to a shortened position of the psoas. This can set up an inhibiting factor of the glutes which is its opposing muscle. When this happens other muscles must compensate. The hamstrings and QL must work harder – this holding pattern creates tension on L4 & L5 unless other core muscles are strong. The reason why L4 & L5 and not so much L2 & L3 is because the diaphragm is connected to L2 & L3 which have an upward force. This is the most common holding pattern and the cause of most sportsmens’ woes. Footballers have hamstring problems due to this, but tend to do strengthening exercises which do not correct the inhibiting factors. MFIT, using the sterling-nunn procedure is able to correct the imbalances which are common.
Sterling-Nunn procedure is a technique devised by Michael Sterling which can be seen on his website mfi-therapy.com
These holding patterns which we have whilst sitting generally carry on when walking or standing. Much can be made of the way someone walks. Two of the most common ways of walking are the people who over stride and psoas carriers. The latter involves the holding pattern which causes millions of people a year problems, and billions to the health industry. This holding pattern causes tension in L4 & L5 and back problems. The over striding causes tension in the knees and hips which can lead to arthritis. When joints hold tension fascia builds up causing more loading through the area and in many, deterioration of that joint. Using MFIT techniques and others, we balance out muscle loading through joints. Injuries which seem unexplainable and hard to treat are normally traced back to fascia in the abdomen area. Footballers tend to get hamstring injuries not due to weak hamstrings but because loading through the psoas is dominant. Thus the hamstrings and lower back take more load.
We have 28 points we work with, held within the fascia which affect muscle loading and function. Muscle and fascia are inter-connected, so for better results with training, both should always be assessed. Using new techniques many problems only need one or two treatments as the body heals a lot quicker when it is not carrying tension.
Many ailments which people suffer from can be treated by addressing the fascia in the abdomen area. Digestion/reflux can be treated by releasing around the diaphragm the points which have a direct effect on the stomach and heart areas.
We can go for weeks without food, days without water, but only minutes without breathing. We get 95% of our energy from breathing. Most of our internal organs are situated below the diaphragm, so with a good breath they get a massage from oxygenated blood. This is why yoga is good as its movements creates a sponge affect on the abdomen helping to clear away toxins. When you see a baby breathing, its belly expands on inhalation. As we get older we can adopt other breathing patterns which inhibit the body’s natural energy flow. At MFIT we address these issues helping the client to release patterns which inhibits energy flow.