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Updated: Apr 11

In the pursuit of optimal health and wellness, flexibility and mobility are paramount. However, achieving and maintaining these qualities can be challenging, especially for individuals with limited range of motion or tight muscles. Enter assisted stretching, a practice gaining popularity for its ability to enhance flexibility, improve mobility, and promote overall well-being.

Understanding Assisted Stretching

Assisted stretching involves one person facilitating stretches for another, often under the guidance of a trained professional such as a massage therapist, physical therapist, or personal trainer. Unlike solo stretching, where individuals rely solely on their own strength and flexibility, assisted stretching leverages external assistance to deepen stretches and target specific muscle groups more effectively.

Techniques and Methodologies

Assisted stretching employs a variety of techniques and methodologies tailored to individual needs and goals. These may include:

Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation (PNF): PNF techniques involve a combination of passive stretching and isometric contractions to improve flexibility and muscle length. This approach is highly effective in targeting tight muscles and enhancing range of motion.

Active Isolated Stretching (AIS): AIS focuses on isolated muscle groups, with individuals actively contracting the opposing muscle while stretching the target muscle. This technique helps improve flexibility while minimizing the risk of injury.

Dynamic Body Stretching: Dynamic stretching involves continuous movement through a range of motion, gradually increasing flexibility and mobility. This approach is particularly beneficial as a warm-up before physical activity or as part of a regular stretching routine.

Fascial Stretch Therapy (FST): FST targets the fascia, the connective tissue that surrounds muscles, bones, and joints. By applying gentle traction and movement, FST aims to improve flexibility, reduce stiffness, and enhance overall mobility.

Benefits of Assisted Stretching

Assisted stretching offers a myriad of benefits for individuals of all ages and fitness levels:

  • Improved Flexibility: By targeting specific muscle groups and applying controlled pressure, assisted stretching helps increase muscle length and joint flexibility, allowing for greater freedom of movement.

  • Enhanced Mobility: Regular assisted stretching sessions can help reduce stiffness, increase joint mobility, and improve overall functional movement patterns, making daily activities easier and more comfortable.

  • Injury Prevention: By addressing muscular imbalances, tightness, and restrictions, assisted stretching can help prevent injuries related to overuse or poor biomechanics. It promotes optimal muscle length-tension relationships and encourages proper movement mechanics.

  • Pain Relief: Assisted stretching can alleviate muscle tension and reduce discomfort associated with conditions such as back pain, neck stiffness, and tight hips. It promotes relaxation and releases endorphins, the body's natural pain relievers.

  • Stress Reduction: Assisted stretching induces a state of relaxation, reduces stress hormones, and promotes a sense of well-being. It provides a valuable opportunity for individuals to unwind, recharge, and connect with their bodies.

What to expect during a session

Assisted Stretching utilizes the principles of passive stretching with the expertise of a skilled practitioner. Here’s what typically happens during a session:

  • Assessment: Your initial session starts with an assessment to understand your specific needs, concerns, and any limitations. Corey will guide you through a 3-point mobility assessment to identify potential areas of limitation, stiffness, and pain.

  • Warm-Up: Corey begins the session with a warm-up to prepare your muscles for stretching. This can include gentle movements or light massage, focusing on static stretching and mobilizations.

  • Progressive Stretches: The stretches progress gradually to ensure comfort and avoid excessive discomfort. Corey introduces advanced techniques such as PNF and therapeutic massage techniques to enhance flexibility.

  • Cool-Down: The session concludes with a cool-down period, incorporating gentle movements and relaxed stretching to help your body transition smoothly.

How often should you go?

We recommend starting with 2 sessions per week, available in 30-minute or 60-minute durations. Depending on your mobility level, you may need more frequent sessions. Corey, our highly experienced Licensed Massage Therapist at Waha Massage Studio, customizes each session to meet your unique needs and ensure safety and effectiveness.

Embrace Assisted Stretching at Waha Massage Studio in Arlington

At Waha in Arlington, I specialize in assisted stretching sessions tailored to your unique needs and goals. I am dedicated to helping you unlock your full potential, whether you're an athlete looking to improve performance, an office worker seeking relief from stiffness, or anyone in between.

Experience the transformative power of assisted stretching and embark on a journey towards greater flexibility, mobility, and well-being. Schedule your session at Waha today and discover the difference it can make in your life.

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