Graston Therapy: Everything You Need To Know
If you have ever checked out my Instagram, then you have definitely seen me post some videos of Graston Technique! It has become increasingly popular, and it is extremely effective. I would like to give you a little more information on what exactly Graston therapy is, the conditions it is used for, and what you can expect out of a session!
1. What is Graston Technique? Graston Technique is a form of IASTM, which stands for Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization. In IASTM, various instruments are used to “mobilize” and treat myofascial restrictions. Myofascial restrictions consist of scar tissue and adhesions that build up in your soft tissue for various reasons. Those including overuse injuries, acute sports injuries, surgical procedures, and prolonged periods of inflammation. Treating and mobilizing these restrictions are important for pain relief, increasing range of motion, and returning the tissue back to normal, pre-injury status.
2. What is Graston Technique used for? Now that you know that Graston Technique is used to mobilize myofascial restrictions, you’re probably wondering , “great...so what exactly does that mean?!” What it means is that basically any sort of injury of inflammatory process has the potential to alter the composition of healthy tissue, so Graston can be used to treat a VARIETY of different conditions! Some of the most common things I treat in the office with Graston include Plantar Fasciitis, trigger finger, Golfer’s Elbow, Tennis Elbow, rotator cuff injuries, and knee and ankle sprain/strain injuries. I also use Graston to help relieve pain and stiffness in the neck and upper back specifically due to inflammation and over use of the upper trapezius muscles (this feels SO good, and can also be done on the hamstrings and quads!).
3. What To Expect Out of a Graston Session: A normal Graston session will take between 10-20 minutes, depending on the severity of the injury, and the part of the body that is being treated. First, topical ointment is used over the skin to reduce friction and skin irritation, allowing the instruments to glide easily over the skin and muscle. After the skin is prepped, stainless steel Graston instruments of various shapes in sizes are used with light to moderate pressure over the area, usually in a sweeping motion (some people refer to this as “scraping”). During or immediately after Graston treatment, it is normal for the skin to appear red.. You may even experience a little bruising and soreness 24-48 hours later, and this is due to the physical nature of therapy. Ice can be used for any discomfort, and after that passes you will more than likely feel improvement after just one session!