Fascia is a specialized system of the body that has an appearance similar to a spider's web or a sweater. Fascia is very densely woven, covering and interpenetrating every muscle, bone, nerve, artery and vein, as well as, all internal organs including the heart, lungs, brain and spinal cord. The most interesting aspect of the fascial system is that it is one continuous structure that exists from head to toe without interruption. Each part of the entire body is therefore connected to every other part by the fascia, like the yarn in a sweater.
Fascia plays an important role in the support and function of our bodies, since it surrounds and attaches to all structures. In the normal healthy state, the fascia is relaxed and can stretch and move without restriction. However, when one experiences physical trauma, emotional trauma, scarring, or inflammation, the fascia loses its pliability and becomes a source of tension to the rest of the body.
Trauma, such as a fall, car accident, whiplash, surgery or just habitual poor posture and repetitive stress injuries can have cumulative effects on the body’s fascia. Fascial restrictions can cause all kinds of symptoms including pain, headaches or restriction of motion. Fascial restrictions affect our flexibility and stability, and are a determining factor in our ability to withstand stress and perform daily activities.
*adapted from myofascialrelease.com