Dr. Janet Travell was a pioneer in the examination and treatment of what she labelled "trigger points". A trigger point is clinically described as a tender nodule within a taut band of muscle. There are often "trigger point pain referral patterns"; meaning that when the trigger point is active, referred pain can be felt else where. For example, active trigger points in the scalene muscles can be felt all the way down the arm into the fingers. This can sometimes lead to the pursuit of unnecessary pain killers, and procedures.
The therapist relies on their knowledge of anatomy, palpation skills and communication with the client to locate and resolve a trigger point - which can be as small as 1/64". Once the trigger point is located, static pressure is applied, at a pressure level within the client's level of comfort. The process is repeated until the trigger point improves or is completely resolved. Gentle stretching is applied to the affected muscle afterward, to address any decrease in flexibility or range of motion.
Neuromuscular therapy is the massage to request when you are having a specific acute or chronic pain issue as it can help improve the following conditions:
- TMJ disorder
- neck pain including thoracic outlet syndrome
- adhesive capsulitis/shoulder pain
- tennis/golpher's elbow
- carpal tunnel syndrome
- breathing restrictions
- runner's knee
- low back pain and sciatica
- plantar fasciitis
NMT is an integrative approach to opt for when you have been having pain or muscular restrictions that a standard massage can't seem to touch. NMT gets to the root of the pain to help resolve it. Each session includes deep tissue massage of a targeted area coupled with trigger point release, using static pressure, and can include stretching of the affected muscles.