In a recent Wall Street Journal online article By Kevin Clark , Clark introduces readers to, what some NFL teams are calling, 'Feel-good Fridays". He mentions that the Green Bay Packers and the Philadelphia Eagles have both adopted this new, somewhat unusal, practice schedule. Now, although they didn't make it to this weekend's, Superbowl, both teams had a great run (Packers 13-5 and Eagles 10-6).
'Feel-good Fridays' include massage, Graston Technique ® and an off day from practice. Wouldn't it be nice to end your work week like that?! Traditionally, NFL teams have contact practices on Friday (2 days before a game) and light practices on Saturday (the day before a game). According to players, utilizing Friday as a rest and 'Feel-good' day seems to work--The Packers clenched NFC North and the Eagles finished 2nd in the NFC East.
As many of the NFL players are discovering, letting your body heal is essential for top performance. As with anything in life, a balance is necessary between work and rest, or play and recovery. So why use techniques like Graston Technique a couple days before game day?
Well, Graston Technique® is a form of instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilization used to break down scar tissue, fascial restrictions, and reduce inflammation. The metal tools are pressed over the effected area to help identify tissue dysfunction, then the tools are used to break up scar tissue or fascial restrictions (knots) that may be present. After the scar tissue is broken up, the body sends fresh blood to the area to allow proper healing to take place. Usually this healing process that Graston starts, takes about 24-48 hours (makes sense to do it on Friday, two days before game day) to start 'working'.
Think about it this way. You rip your jeans at the knee so your grandma sews them up for you. This is great, no more holes. However, next time you try to bend your knee it wont bend as far because Grandma sewed up your jeans without adding any extra fabric. A scar or "knot" will act the same way Grandma's sewing job did. It will restrict movement and inhibit certain actions that may be required of a task. The NFL staff seems to finally understand this (with no help, however, from my great analogy). Allow players an opportunity to un-due all the scar tissue and knot formation that they did Sunday - Thursday and then they will (hopefully) be able to function more efficiently.
The same concept is true for runners, cyclist, swimmers, dancers, gymnasts, soccer players, ice skaters, wrestlers, baseball players, basketball players... you understand. So, they're doing it...why aren't you?
Check out the article referenced here.
Ask any Achieve Sports Medicine staff member if you have any questions about how Graston Technique ® can benefit you.