Massage Techniques

Soft Tissue Release

soft tissue releaseSoft tissue release (STR) is a highly effective massage technique popular among athletes and trainers. Using hands and tools, it manually manipulates the fascia, tendons, and ligaments. The objective is to help these tissues recover faster from activities by improving their elasticity and increasing blood flow.

Whether you have pain in your body or trying to prevent it from occurring, understanding what STR is will help you in your endeavors to relieve pain and tension.

If you’ve heard of STR and are unsure if it’s right for you, this article is here to fill you in on everything you need to know to make an informed decision regarding your pain management care.

What Is Soft Tissue Release?

Soft tissue release is a type of massage therapy that uses specific techniques to stretch and manipulate the tissues in your muscles and joints. Soft tissue release works by manually stretching the primary muscle fibers (fascia or connective tissue) within the body to release adhesions and scarring that can build up over time.

When we suffer from an injury, the body responds by forming thick scar tissue to protect the site and try to heal. The problem is that this scar tissue can often adhere to the surrounding muscles, joints, and other soft tissues, causing pain and discomfort. By stretching the fibers, we can manually break up this adhesion, effectively releasing the tight, painful area and allowing the injury sites to heal correctly.

The tissues in these areas are called “soft tissues.” STR practitioners believe these tissues can become restricted — or “bound up” — through everyday activity. This can lead to pain and other physical problems. STR aims to help these tissues recover faster from activities by improving their elasticity and increasing blood flow.

What Are the Benefits of Soft Tissue Release?

While STR effectively relieves pain in the targeted areas, the benefits extend beyond healing injuries. Here are just a handful of the various benefits regular STR sessions can provide:

Relieves Pain and Stiffness

One of STR’s most obvious but important perks is pain and stiffness relief. Deep massages like this help to stimulate blood flow and circulation, which in turn speeds up healing and releases tension from the muscles.

Increases Mobility

You may notice increased mobility after STR, thanks to the pain relief and improvement in your circulation.

Decreases Muscle Soreness

STR helps restore muscle circulation and decreases inflammation, which reduces the soreness from your everyday aches and pains.

Helps Prevent Injuries

When your muscles get tight, they’re more susceptible to injury. With STR, your muscles become loose again, helping to prevent future damage.

Speeds Up Recovery From Activity

Sessions of STR help to significantly decrease recovery time from soreness, overuse, and injury. This is particularly helpful for athletes who want to get back to training faster.

What Should I Consider When Searching for Soft Tissue Release Near Me?

In search of the best STR therapist near you to help manage your pain? Here are some important things you’ll want to consider as you begin:


The most important thing to check first is their qualifications. Check their education and licenses to ensure they’re specifically trained in STR.


See what people are saying. If you can get a personal recommendation, that’s even better. But if you can’t, do some internet sleuthing to see what other people are saying about the STR therapist you’re considering. This can help you decide if you want to book an appointment.

Your Comfort

Your needs aren’t limited to focusing on your body’s injuries and painful areas. Your needs also include all the things that help to make you comfortable. Do you have a gender preference for your STR therapist? Where would you like your sessions to take place? Depending on how often you’ll be going, you may want a therapist closer to your home or work. Determine your specific preferences and keep those in mind as you begin your search.

What Should I Expect During Soft Tissue Release?

Once you’ve found the best STR therapist near you and your appointment is all set, you may be curious about what comes next. While every STR therapist and every individual session will be different, there are certain things that you can expect.

During the treatment, you can usually expect to be asked about your medical history, what symptoms you are experiencing, and your lifestyle. The therapist will also want to know about any previous injuries or areas of tightness that you may have been experiencing. They may also want you to change into loose-fitting garments so that they can better access and treat the areas that need attention.

During your treatment, the therapist will look for areas of tightness, tenderness, and spots in the connective tissue that feel stuck or held together with adhesions. These can be found in the muscles of the back, hips, legs, neck, shoulders, upper arms, and anywhere else the fascia exists.

They may also be able to feel areas of swelling or fluid build-up that is restricting movement. The therapist will use their hands to manually stretch the area, breaking up the adhesions and allowing the tissue to move and heal properly.

You might feel a slight pulling sensation where they are working, but it should not be painful. You may also feel a warm sensation as your blood circulation increases, bringing more oxygen and nutrients to the area to help it heal faster.

You should also expect to be advised on how many sessions you will need and how often you should return for follow-up treatments to keep seeing improvement.

Where Can I Book the Best Soft Tissue Release Near Me?

Finding the best STR therapist near you has never been easier, thanks to MassageBook’s directory of professional massage therapists.

Simple-to-use tools and a selection of over 25,000 therapists across the US and Canada make it convenient to find and book a highly rated provider near you.

Plus, you can view licenses and education, read reviews from verified clients, and see therapist profiles to help you make an informed decision.

Save yourself valuable time and energy. Book an appointment on MassageBook today!

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