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The breakdown/realignment of collagen fibres is a common benefit gained through massage. A massage helps to break down and realign collagen fibres that have been formed to repair damaged tissues. A variety of techniques can be used to break down and realign collagen fibres during a massage. Breaking down and realigning collagen fibres can help reduce restriction, decrease pain and increase relaxation. Our massage therapists at Physio.co.uk use massage to help decrease tightness, reduce pain and increase range of movement.

What is the breakdown / realignment of collagen fibres?

The breakdown/realignment of collagen fibres involves breaking down cross links formed by collagen fibres and encouraging them to be placed in a normal position. Collagen fibres are fibrous connective tissues that have many functions. The most common function of collagen fibres is for the repair of damaged tissues. Collagen fibres create a form of adhesion after injury. An adhesion is formed as collagen fibres lay in a haphazard position across muscle fibres and fascia. An adhesion can increase restriction and reduce range of movement. A massage aims to break down and realign collagen fibres to help reduce restriction and increase range of movement. A massage increases the temperature of tissues, reducing their tightness. As the temperature of collagen fibres increase, a range of techniques are used to help encourage the realignment of collagen fibres so that they align with the body's natural muscle fibres. As collagen fibres are realigned the restrictions caused by adhesions are reduced and pain is decreased.

What are the benefits of the breakdown / realignment of collagen fibres?

There are many benefits of the breakdown / realignment of collagen fibres. The most common benefits include:

The breakdown and realignment of collagen fibres can help improve recovery. After injury or surgery, collagen fibres are produced to help repair damaged tissues. Collagen fibres are laid unnaturally across muscle fibres, so normal movement is reduced. Collagen fibres contribute to an increase in pain during recovery as they form adhesions that restrict movement and increase muscle tightness. A massage helps to increase the temperature of collagen fibres. An increase in temperature allows them to be broken down and realigned. Realigning collagen fibres so they are positioned in the same direction as muscle fibres decreases pain as adhesions are reduced.

Increased range of movement is a common benefit gained when collagen fibres are broken down and realigned. Collagen fibres are placed across muscle fibres in a haphazard position, resulting in an increase in restriction. An increase in restriction reduces range of movement. As collagen fibres rise in temperature during a massage, they are broken down to reduce their restrictiveness. An increase in temperature also increases their elasticity and flexibility to help further reduce restriction. After they have been broken down, they are encouraged to realign with the body's natural muscle fibres using a range of techniques. As collagen fibres align with the muscle fibres, restriction is decreased even further, increasing range of movement.

The breakdown and realignment of collagen fibres can help reduce scar tissue. Scar tissue is made up of collagen fibres and can become very tough and fibrous. Scar tissue can also have a different appearance on the skin when compared to the person's natural skin. Scar tissue occurs when the skin has been broken and so needs to be repaired. As collagen fibres are broken down and realigned during a massage, scar tissue is also broken down. The breakdown of scar tissues decreases restriction and their appearance is reduced.

Customer given a shoulder massage while in a relaxed position in Manchester Physio Clinic

What techniques are used to break down / realign collagen fibres?

A variety of techniques can be used to break down / realign collagen fibres. Common techniques used include:

Acupressure is commonly used to break down and realign collagen fibres. Acupressure is a technique performed using fingers or thumbs. Acupressure involves applying pressure to specific areas of the body to help break down adhesions. Adhesions can often be a result of a build-up of collagen fibres. Acupressure restricts blood flow to the area pressure is being placed on, resulting in an ischemic reaction. As pressure is applied, the adhesions are broken down. As the pressure is released, an increase in blood flow is encouraged to the area. An increase in blood flow helps to further increase temperature of collagen fibres, enabling realignment. Breaking down and realigning collagen fibres using acupressure helps to reduce restriction and improve blood circulation.

Frictions are often used to break down and realign collagen fibres. Frictions are performed using the fingertips or thumbs and involve applying pressure along muscle fibres. Frictions help break down a build-up of collagen fibres that has occurred within muscles. Frictions are applied transversely across the muscle fibres to help break down the collagen fibres and increase their temperature. When the collagen fibres are broken down and temperature has increased, the direction is changed to try and realign collagen fibres. Using frictions to break down and realign collagen fibres helps to increase range of movement and decrease pain.

A common technique used to break down and realign collagen fibres is kneading. Kneading is used on areas of the body containing soft tissues. Kneading involves slowly pulling and squeezing muscles to increase their temperature and reduce restriction. Kneading helps to break down and realign collagen fibres by encouraging an increase in temperature. An increase in temperature occurs as blood flow is increased. Increasing temperature of collagen fibres through kneading enables them to be broken down more easily to then be realigned with the natural muscle fibres.

Customer given an arm massage while in a sottong position in Manchester Physio Clinic

What situation would the breakdown / realignment of collagen fibres help?

The breakdown / realignment of collagen fibres can help in many situations. Situations the breakdown / realignment of collagen fibres can help include:

The breakdown and realignment of collagen fibres can help post injury. After an injury has occurred, a build-up of collagen fibres form to help repair the damage to tissues. As build-up of collagen fibres can restrict movement as they are not as elastic as normal muscle fibres. A restriction in movement can further increase pain and can also result in an increase in muscle tightness. A massage helps to reduce restriction and muscle tightness to decrease pain. During a massage the temperature of collagen fibres rises. A rise in the temperature of collagen fibres helps them to loosen and stretch. As collagen fibres loosen, they are broken down and realigned. Breaking down and realigning collagen fibres reduce restriction and therefore pain.

The effects of scarring can be helped when collagen fibres are broken down and realigned. Scarring can affect a person both physically and mentally. Physically, scarring can be restrictive resulting in a decrease in movement and increase in restriction. Mentally, scarring has a different appearance to a person's natural skin. Breaking down and realigning collagen fibres also helps to break down scar tissue. The breakdown of scar tissue helps to reduce restrictiveness and increase movement. An increase in movement helps to decrease pain. Breaking down scar tissue also reduces their appearance. Reducing their appearance helps to reduce the mental effects scarring can have.

Summary

The breakdown and realignment of collagen fibres involves breaking down and realigning collagen fibres that are laid in a haphazard position across muscle fibres. There are many benefits of the breakdown and realignment of collagen fibres including improved recovery, increased range of movement and the breakdown of scar tissue. A variety of techniques including acupressure, frictions and kneading are used to break down and realign collagen fibres. The breakdown and realignment of collagen fibres can help a person in many ways including post injury and scarring. Our massage therapists at Physio.co.uk use massage to break down and realign collagen fibres to help decrease pain, increase range of movement and decrease tightness.

How can I arrange a sports massage for the break down/realignment of collagen fibres?

The easiest way to arrange a sports massage for the break down/realignment of collagen fibres at Physio.co.uk is to email us at office@physio.co.uk or call us on 0800 033 7800.

Alternatively if you have any questions please feel free to contact us.

We offer a 7 day service and provide home and clinic appointments.




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