How to perform trigger point therapy

18.133 Find a trigger point by palpation (examining by touch) and apply sufficient pressure to cause discomfort, hold it for about 5-7 seconds—or 10+ seconds if you can tolerate it—then release. (According to what you have been doing to yourself, whether in or out of the gym, the trigger points you need to concentrate on the most may change from day to day. You will probably have your "regulars," though.) Treat another trigger point or two, and then return to the first one. Nimmo recommended two or three sweeps on the same trigger point per treatment.

18.134 With my personal treatment—but remember that I am not professionally trained in trigger point therapy—I do whatever I need to do to feel the required easing of tightness, discomfort or pain. Sometimes one application of pressure per trigger point does the job, but usually two or three are needed. Sometimes I temporarily had to be very aggressive in a specific area, according to need.

18.135 According to Cohen and Schneider2, though, Nimmo

.found that daily treatments are too much for the patient to handle. He felt it was important to give the body time to respond to pressure therapy by resetting itself and rebalancing its efferent-afferent control. Also, since mechanical bruising may occur after deep pressure therapy, the muscles tend to be sore for a day or two.

18.136 Despite being very aggressive in my therapy, especially in getting after the trigger points in my glutei, which were the most bothersome ones for my lower back, I very rarely got any bruising. Perhaps I would have gotten the great benefits I did from treating a given trigger point only alternate days.

18.137 While it is best to get all the troublesome trigger points seen to in a given area, for quickest benefit, just fixing some of them has a knock-on effect in reducing the impact from the other ones.

18.138 ^is is only the beginning of the trigger point therapy, though it is the essence of the "quick fix" (as Prudden calls it) aspect of pain control. It is the quick fix aspect I have focused upon in this chapter, and that I concentrated on in my own early therapy—I was quick fixing myself almost daily. To do a permanent job, a more thorough approach is needed.

18.139 In Prudden's book there is more to pain control than the quick fix, despite the quick fix being so essential for immediate pain control. In Prudden's words on page 49 she says:

^e Purpose of this Quick Fix section is to first show you how to get rid of pain quickly and on the spot... ^e painlessness may last for hours, days, weeks or even for always. But if it doesn't, you must realize there was more work to do. See the Permanent Fix section to learn the next steps to take.

^en on page 117 she writes:

^e permanent fix is an extension of the quick fix. ^e latter is first aid for pain. like knowing where to walk in a minefield. Permanent fix gets rid of the minefield and the enemy.

18.140 Prudden details the "permanent fix" which entails an investigation of the deep-rooted causes of pain, trigger point therapy much more comprehensive than in the quick fix, and exercises (especially stretching). It is a very comprehensive yet cheap book. ^e Schneider manual is the Nimmo technique in great detail, aimed at the professional rather than the lay person.

18.141 Read one or both of these books. For expert hands-on guidance, link up with a chiropractor who has received training in trigger point therapy, a Bonnie Prudden certified myotherapist, or any other therapist with experience in this area. ^en find your own way from there. Unless you are very well off you will be unable to afford to have a professional therapist treat you several times a week. ^is is the reason why it is important to be independent but while being able to get professional help when you need it.

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