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What is Fascia?

John F. Barnes is a Physical Therapist (PT), Licensed Massage Therapist (LMT), and has his National Certification for Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork (NCTMB).


Barnes is an internationally recognized physical therapist, an author, offers lectures for his methods, and the leading authority on Myofascial Release.


Through over 50 years of experience and creative thinking, Barnes has developed the most innovative and highly acclaimed and effective whole body approach to evaluate and treat the pain and dysfunction in the body.


Myofascial Release treatment has grown in the therapy scene with an undisputed impact and often referred to as the most effective form of healthcare therapy.


Our bodies are held together with an extensive connective tissue network. It is what shapes, forms and protects our bodies, and holds our skeleton together, keeping organs, vessels and muscles in their place. Fascia is the toughest portion of this connective tissue network. Resembling an intricate spider web, it spreads throughout the body touching every single cell from head to toe without interruption.


Trauma, inflammation, infection, injury and posture can create a binding down of tissues or tension within the fascia; often resulting in excessive pressure on multiple structures throughout the body including nerves, vessels, bones, and organs. This fascial straightjacket of pressure can cause pain, numbness, tingling, stiffness and a general feeling of disorder in the body.


Although a restricted fascial system can cause a multitude of discomforts and disease, it is seldom diagnosed as the problem because it cannot be discerned by standard testing (such as x-rays, MRI, CT scan, EMG, etc).



The JFBMFR approach uses gentle sustained pressure to areas of fascial restriction (throughout the body) for a period of time long enough to create a complete and lasting release of the tissues. The “release” requires gentle but firm pressure for a minimum of 5 minutes. This essential “time element” is what separates JFBMFR from the old forms of myofascial release (MFR) and other types of bodywork. This approach promotes a bioelectrical flow in the body, produces our own natural anti-inflammatory agent, and rehydrates at the cellular level. The result is relief from the crushing pressure of a restricted fascial system.


JFBMFR fosters “resonance” between the therapist and the patient. Vibratory rates are usually quite different between humans on the molecular level. With sustained pressure during treatment, vibratory rates of therapist and patient become identical, thereby creating an environment for tissue softening and release. These releases are felt by the therapists, and eventually by the patient as body awareness improves. This resonance between patient and therapist takes time to achieve, and is a crucial factor in creating a body free of restriction and pain.