microStretching® is an active realignment soft tissue manipulation technique based on the gentle passive stretching techniques developed by Dr. Nikos Apostolopoulos.
The study of pain, specifically chronic pain, and the musculoskeletal patterns developed, was the motivation behind the development of the technique.
From physiology and the anatomy of muscles one easily appreciates the basis of microStretching. The myofibrils are constituted of myofilaments of actin and myosin proteins, which themselves are well controlled, protected, and maintained in a system of reflexes with stretch/tension sensors such as muscle spindles and tension receptors (Golgi Tendon Organ). Any overstretch of muscle is reflexively protected as the muscle goes into spasm. If the stretch is beyond physiologic limits and there is damage of the myofilaments, the spasm continues and there is a degree of formation of fibrous tissue in the repair mechanism. Restoration of muscle function must be gradual and within limits of function and stretch of the muscle fibres. if this is not carefully controlled, you end up causing more stretch damage and more fibrous tissue is formed with a greater limitation to movement. The technique of microStretching considers the micro-anatomy of muscle fibres, their physiologic functions, and their limits of activity.
In addition, whenever there is inaction of muscle, fibrous tissue around joints where the muscle acts begins to shrink, this may cause freezing and a limitation of movement within that joint. microStretching takes this into consideration so that the capsular fibres are not overstretched and damaged. The technique also considers the circulation of blood in the region affected. As blood supply to the area is improved, the healing process is facilitated and function is more readily restored