THE JOHN F. BARNES APPROACH
The John F Barnes’ Approach to Myofascial Release is a mind-body therapy that is safe, gentle, and effective in producing results that last. Therapy sessions are performed directly on skin without oils, creams or machinery. This enables the therapist, through tactile and proprioceptive senses, to accurately detect fascial restrictions and apply the appropriate amount of sustained pressure to facilitate release of the fascia.
The John F Barnes Approach to Myofascial Release (JFB MFR) is a multidisciplinary treatment. It consists of myofascial release, soft tissue mobilization, craniosacral therapy, myofascial movement facilitation (unwinding), and effective communication. It is used to eliminate pain, structural dysfunction and emotional issues.
All the components of JFB MFR can be thought of as fitting into a triangle consisting of three points; Myofascial Structural Release, Myofascial Rebounding and Myofascial Unwinding. Myofascial Structural Release consists of the gentle application of sustained pressure into fascial restrictions. Time/the sustained pressure is an essential element as it, when combined with light pressure, creates what is known as the piezoelectric (pressure electric) phenomenon. The piezoelectric phenomenon allows for the flow of bioenergy throughout the mind-body complex and facilitates the solidified ground substance to rehydrate and return to a more fluid state. As the ground substance of the fascial tissue rehydrates it allows for the elongation of the myofascial tissue, relieving the pressure caused by restrictions on pain-sensitive structures. The fascial system takes time to release. After 90-120 seconds of sustained pressure the fascial tissue will begin to release. 3- 5 minutes or longer of sustained pressure is then required for each release. If the time element is ignored only the osseous (bone) and elastic components of the system will be affected.
Myofascial Rebounding is a gentle oscillating motion the therapist introduces into the client's mind-body complex by utilizing the bodies fluid as a therapeutic tool. Rebounding enhances the frequency and rhythmic vibration of energy in the body and transforms the energy of the fluid system into resonance. Resonance is the basis of release in myofascial release. Myofascial rebounding can also be used as an assessment tool by the therapist to detect areas of the body that are hard and immobile.
Myofascial Unwinding is a highly effective movement facilitation technique used to decrease pain, increase range of motion, eliminate subconscious holding or bracing patterns, increase proprioceptive awareness, and increase functional mobility of the neuro/myofascial/osseous systems. The client’s movements during unwinding can take many forms but are all from the client's intuition or feeling intelligence. During unwinding the client engages in spontaneous therapeutic motion in which the body assumes positions in space that represent positions of past traumas. These positions portray one’s subconscious fear, pain, and/or negative memories that have created holding, bracing, and/or avoidance patterns that block the progress of traditional therapeutic approaches. By re-experiencing these non-injurious memories the threat is taken out of the system and the mind-body complex is able to let go so healing can occur.
JFB MFR can be combined with medical, dental, therapeutic, psychological, and alternative and holistic based interventions. It can also enhance the effectiveness of therapeutic modalities, mobilization/manipulation, massage, muscle energy techniques, exercise and flexibility training, neurodevelopmental intervention, sensory integration, and movement therapies.