Leon Chaitow recently posted a great article on his website discussing the use of isometric contractions in pain management. In this post he discusses many topics including trigger points and muscle energy techniques. This is a must read article to truly get the most out of your trigger point work and muscle energy techniques.
I was going to include this article in last week’s stuff you should read article, but I really thought this was worth it’s own post.
Here are some tidbits of info that I really liked:
- Long, low level isometric contractions are best at reducing pain – Leon tells you a few possible mechanisms as to why this works
- All techniques, included isometric contractions and other methods of trigger point release, should be followed up with gentle stretching to lengthen the muscle
- This has many implications for trigger point releases and muscle energy techniques
- Combining everything Leon discuss, muscle energy techniques are simple and potentially very effective treatments to perform. This makes muscle energy a no-brainer to include in your tool belt – potentially large bank for your buck with minimal investment
Read the full article on Isometric Contractions in Pain Management from Leon’s site, but more importantly, take a deeper look at Leon’s book on Muscle Energy Techniques. This is one of the books that are including in my Essential Reading List and one that I recommend to everyone wishing to improve their manual therapy skills. Check it out: