Some Fun & Interesting Facts About Fascia
You’ve heard the word “fascia” used in connection with exercise or stretching. Maybe you practice self-myofacial release or SMR. But what exactly is fascia and why is important to you as a competitor or casual athlete? Let’s learn some facts about fascia.
From the Latin meaning “band”, fascia is “a band or sheet of connective tissue, primarily collagen, beneath the skin that attaches, stabilizes, encloses, and separates muscles and other internal organs. Fascia is classified by layer, as superficial fascia, deep fascia, and visceral or parietal fascia, or by its function and anatomical location.”
Why It’s Important
We know the largest organ in/on the body is the skin. Sheets of fascia beneath the skin help you move about, help your body heal and even feed itself. According to The Urban Monk, fascia:
- Creates Scar Tissue
- Acts As A Cell Highway
- Effected By Water and By Emotional Trauma
When you don’t move about or stay hydrated, your fascia shrinks and gets stiff, making you generally sore. Chances are if you have a knot in a muscle, it’s not the muscle itself but the fascia around the muscle. Do your shoulders get tense when you’re sitting at a computer? Chances are that’s the fascia talking to you.
Padram Shojai, Doctor of Oriental Medicine and former Taoist monk recommends several things you can do to keep the “skin under your skin” healthy and happy.
- Stretching and/or Yoga
- Foam Rolling
- Cardio Exercise
If you’ve been with MissionFiT for any length of time, you already know how Coach K stresses the importance of stretching and mobility. As well, foam rolling or SMR, should not be ignored before or after a workout. Giving your muscles and, therefore, your fascia a chance to release tension is extremely important.
If you can, try a sauna. Fascia also responds well to heat. That’s why cardio exercise can also be beneficial. Cardio helps to heat up your body. So keep yourself happy and healthy. Care for your fascia!