Soft Tissue Mobilization

What You Should Know About Soft Tissue Mobilization?

Soft tissue mobilization is a type of manual therapy that is usually performed by physical therapist and chiropractors. It deals with manipulating the soft tissue that encapsulates a joint and muscles over joints that have a restricted range of motion. Soft tissue includes ligaments, tendons, muscles and the covering that protects them, which is known as fascia. They can suffer injury as a result of direct trauma such as after slipping and falling, after performing some athletic activities or after getting involved in a car accident. Soft tissues can also suffer injury as a result of stresses for daily activities such as typing on a computer.

The common symptoms that you can experience when your soft tissues are injured include tingling, numbness, weakness, tightness, swelling, aches and pains. At the histological level, tissues that are normal should run parallel to each other and they should be full in length. If they have suffered acute or chronic trauma, the tissues have micro tears within them. When the tissue starts healing, it heals in a shortened manner with collagen fibers being laid down in a manner that is cross bridged. This means that you will not have parallel tissue that is full in length and the injured are will not achieve the mechanical or original features of healthy tissue. This will result into abnormal tissue texture, length and tone.

A muscle or tissue that is shortened is more susceptible to injury and it adds more tension, friction and pressure to the tissues surrounding it. This is what brings about cumulative stress injuries and they can turn into a self-perpetuating cycle. The best treatment option for such a condition is soft tissue mobilization. This form of treatment attempts to loosen tightness in tissues and minimize pain by stimulating the tissues.

Soft Tissue Mobilization
Not all Chiropractor use effective Soft Tissue Mobilization techniques.


Chiropractors use their hands or Graston Instruments to apply varying amounts of pressure by using different stroke patterns against the soft tissues. Soft Tissue Mobilization increases movement and strength by allowing the muscles to reach their full length. The goal of this treatment is restoring the length, texture and tone of soft tissues as close to their original function and structure as possible. The techniques that chiropractors use to mobilize soft tissue include the Graston technique and Active Release Techniques. They also combine Kinesio Taping with Trans-Friction Massage.

This form of treatment shows promising results especially because it is affordable and does not take a lot of time. The key to effective treatment through soft tissue mobilization is knowledge about how the muscles are constructed. Since medical practitioners need to apply a certain amount of pressure in order to treat a patient, they take care to avoid sensitive or bony areas. For example, if they are massaging the legs, they avoid the area around the knee.

Soft Tissue Mobilization technique can cause increased soreness or tenderness in the area being treated. It can also cause skin bruising or redness. However, qualified medical professional to perform the procedure in a manner that reduces the risks of adverse effects. Soft tissue mobilization is a great technique for treating muscle tightness that has occurred due to injury. This treatment ensures that anyone suffering from damage to soft tissues gets healed and continues living normally.

About DustinYoungDC 66 Articles
Dr. Young is Sports Medicine Certified and uses the latest treatments available to insure his clients make a quick recovery. Dr. Dustin Young offers Chiropractic services in the heart of Seabrook, Texas. He is the lead chiropractor for the LaPorte high school football team and heads the Sports Medicine Team for the Pasadena Rodeo.

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