The majority of sports injuries, and many less dramatic aches and pains, are not injuries to the muscles, but to the connective tissue. Most sensory nerves which tell us we are in pain, are also in the connective tissue, not the muscle. An exciting area of research in recent years, is into connective tissue, or fascia. The new findings are influencing sports training, general exercise and rehabilitation work. The work of
Tom Myers of Anatomy Trains links muscles and areas of the body in a completely new way which makes more sense of how the body functions than traditional anatomy. Robert Schliep, a German scientist has developed Fascial Training. He advocates incorporating techniques to condition the connective tissue into normal sports training, believing this could reduce injury, among other benefits.
There is connective tissue everywhere in the body, but there are areas where there are large concentrations. One of these is the lower back, where so many painful problems occur. Pilates, yoga, the Alexander Technique and others, have exploited the properties of fascia long before science could explain it. Now that science is catching up and giving us more information, we can develop fascial training to be even more helpful.