What is Muscle Activation Techniques?
Muscle Activation Techniques (MAT) is a biomechanically based modality, designed to increase the contractile capability of the muscular system; thereby improving joint stability. MAT is the only modality which solely looks at improving the contractile function of the neuromuscular system.
Follow me here, this is important! A natural protective response to muscle inhibition is tightness in other ‘good’ muscles. This means that tight muscles are caused by other ‘weak’ muscles. This is a paradigm shift in how tight muscles are interpreted. For many decades other sports medicine modalities have interpreted ‘tight’ muscles as the problem, when actually tight muscles are a natural protective response to deficits elsewhere. Now that we have cracked the code on dealing with tight muscles and weak muscles, we can correctly improve the performance of your muscles by increasing strength, mobility, endurance and decreasing tightness.
When being treated with these specialized techniques you will notice an immediate strength increase in a muscle which was previously on vacation. You may also notice an increase in your range of motion with a reduction in tightness.
How do we do it?
Muscle Activation Techniques is a hands on assessment and treatment which incorporates a Comparative of Active Motion (CAM) which is basically looking for asymmetries in joint motion. Followed by an Active Muscle Contract & Sustain (AMC&S) test, this is similar to manual muscle testing. Once a muscle is determined as inhibited, a Digital Force Application at Muscle Attachment Tissues (DFAMAT) is performed or a Positional Iso-angular Contraction (PIC) is performed to restore neuromuscular function. Then after the treatment is completed of that specific tissue, we retest the muscles ability to contract. The outcome usually results in more force output of the treated muscle. We then move on to the next muscle(s) which could be potentially limiting a given range of motion until full muscular stability has been restored to the joint.
When looking at something as simple as a human walking, the nervous system has to communicate with the musculoskeletal system. There are billions of specific calculations made by your central nervous system every second. These calculations include specifically shortening and or lengthening all of the 850 muscles in the body simultaneously , this is nothing short of a miracle.
Unfortunately, not everyone has all of these muscles working for them on a given day. When this happens, it’s almost like having a few of your employees taking long lunches, chit-chatting by the water cooler and wasting their time on Facebook. For all the work to get done at the end of the day, unfortunately, the hard working employees have to WORK HARDER, this is known as ‘compensation’ in the muscular system.
Every now and then, the nervous system loses its ability to communicate with some of the muscles in the body. When this happens these muscles cannot contract fully on demand, commonly known as muscle inhibition. This impaired communication can be caused by many factors; however, the usual suspects are mechanical stress, trauma or overuse.
How can this benefit you?