What Is Fascial Integration Therapy (FIT)?
When you do not move enough, do repetitive movements or have poor posture for too long, your fascia can get spasmed and lose their elasticity. Adhesions between the different layers of this tissue develop leading to a loss of mobility and pain in some parts of your body.
Did You Say “Fascia”? What Is That?
Generally called connective tissue, fascia is made of protein fibers like collagen and elastin bathed in ground substance. It provides support to your muscles, bones and organs. It holds their shape and transmits mechanical tension. Richly innervated and vascularised, this continuous webbing helps your different muscle and visceral systems connect with one another.
Ideally, your fascia should be loose enough to assure normal gliding between the different tissue layers. When they are not functioning properly, signals from the nerve endings are disturbed and they can be interpreted by your brain as pain and discomfort.
What To Do Then?
A good way to address fascial tightness on your own is to stretch or roll out your body. Unfortunately, sometimes it is not enough and you need an educated hand to unwind these local spasm restrictions. This is where FIT can help.
FIT is a body manipulation therapy that uses specific moves on key-points (often located at fascia crossings) throughout your body. Performing the whole sequence helps to restore the balance of the fascial system of your body.
FIT is a unique hands-on, pragmatic approach. This manual therapy uses only one tool to feels and treat: the hand.
Every touch and interaction with someone else’s body induces changes and modifications such as in temperature, tone and blood flow. Even as little or few as they were, they always occur. Therapeutic touch triggers a chain reaction on your body’s different systems and your body will then need to process this information. We call this response Integration.
Fascia are everywhere in your body. They provide structure, support and interconnects all your systems together. Myofascia for muscle. Retinaculum or aponeurosis for your tendons. Ligaments and periosteum for bones. Peritoneum for your visceral organs. It is in fact one uninterrupted tissue that connects from your head to your toes.
The fascial system is now considered an organ by some scientists. The Fascia Research Society was created in 2005 and holds a congress every 4 years.
FIT is a unique treatment approach. It is:
- Asymptomatic: it will not necessarily aim to treat your symptoms but more their cause
- A derivative of osteopathy: the therapist will scan and release all the active fascia key-points throughout your body and various systems
- A unique, pragmatic approach that helps to stimulate the self-healing potential of your body
An Interview With Damien, An Osteopathic Practitioner
Q: Why do you think FIT is a great method of treatment?
Damien: I like to begin my osteopathic treatments with this method because it helps scan and treat the whole body. This unique therapy is amazingly effective yet simple. Patients often come out with 50% improvement after the first session. The technique is completely harmless and secure. It requires no particular setup, no tools, and the patient stays fully clothed
Q: What is meant by “no particular setup”? Is a treatment table needed?
Damien: Unless the patient has difficulty standing, the treatment generally starts in a standing position beginning your the neck and shoulder areas. It then moves to your arms, returning to the thoracic and lumbar spine. To perform the sequence on your lower body such as your knees, ankles and feet, your would sit on a chair. This is one of the unique aspects of the method – your are treated while in your 2 most common physiological positions. These are also usually the positions where your experience your symptoms
Q: What conditions can FIT help?
Damien: FIT does not cure anything. Patients are sometimes surprised with this answer. It is a contextual healing approach like every osteopathy treatment. Your self-regulatory potential is stimulated by releasing the fascial imbalances throughout your body. Processing the given information, your body will self-reorganize to find the most comfortable adaptation
Q: Is it suitable for everyone?
Damien: It certainly is! It is adaptable to all ages. Newborns to seniors can be treated with this method. Pregnant women also find this natural therapeutic approach very helpful
Q: What should I expect after a session?
Damien: Immediately after the treatment starts the process of integration in your body. It may take up to 2-3 weeks for your body to fully adjust and find a new balance. You are generally recommend to avoid vigorous physically demanding activities during the next 24 hours. You are then suggested to keep up your daily walking and sufficient water intake. Subsequent sessions can take place 1-2 weeks after your first visit