What is Instrumental Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilisation?

Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilisation or Simply IASTM is a new range of ergonomically designed tool that allows clinicians to efficiently detect and treat fascia restrictions, encourage rapid localisation and effectively treats areas exhibiting soft tissue fibrosis, chronic inflammation, or degeneration with the appropriate amount of pressure.

What are the benefits?

Studies have shown that IASTM provides improvements in range of motion,strength and pain perception following treatment with their physiotherapist. Researcher Melham and his team found that IASTM significantly improved range of motion in a college football player following 7 weeks of IASTM and physical therapy. He also found that scar tissue surrounding the lateral malleolus was reduced and remodelled structurally following IASTM application. He additionally  found improvement in pain reduction and impairment scale  at 6 & 12 weeks following IASTM application for patellar tendonitis.

Common benefits therefore include:

  • Increased range of motion
  • Decreased pain during motion
  • Better motor control
  • Reduced muscle recruitment issues

What to expect?

IASTM usually consists of:

  1. The warming up of the tissue to make it more pliable (heat, aerobic exercise, etc.)
  2. Physiotherapist performing IASTM
  3. Engagement in light exercises to promote proper movement patterns

IASTM is then often accompanied by home exercises such as yoga or home stretches to build flexibility and strengthening in the area of the injury. Patients who perform the home stretches and exercises prescribed by their physical therapist greatly accelerate the process.

Conditions that IASTM treats include:

  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome from usually excessive gaming or phone usage 
  • Chronic neck pain or back pain due to long working hours or repetitive strain 
  • Plantar Fascitis, Patellar Tendinitis,  Tibialis Posterior Tendinitis
  • Heel Pain /Achilles Tendinitis
  • Myofascial Pain and Restrictions which causes musculoskeletal imbalances
  • Chronic Joint Swelling Associated with Sprains/Strains

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