What is My Psoas, and Why Does it Need Myofascial Release?
What is a psoas?
By now, you’ve probably been bombarded with ads about psoas muscle release tools. And maybe you’ve wondered, “what is a psoas?” Well, the psoas is a muscle that’s located on the lower lumbar region of the spine and spreads out through the pelvis and to the femur. When you flex your hip joint, lift your upper leg towards your body, or walk, your psoas muscle is doing much of the work! Since doing these common, everyday movements relies so heavily on your psoas muscle, it’s very easy for this region of the body to get tight, tense, and sore. That’s where these psoas muscle release tools come into play. These tools work to provide myofascial release to easily strained and commonly tight areas of the body, such as the psoas.
What happens when my psoas is tight or tense?
If you continuously neglect your psoas muscle, it will get tighter and tighter, causing tension and pain in the lower back, hips, legs glutes, pelvis, or groin. A tight psoas can also lead to lower back spasms, lumbar disc problems, limited flexibility and mobility, and instability in your core. When your psoas is tight, you lose a lot of mobility around the mid section of our body, so a lot of balancing work gets redistributed to your shoulders and knees, causing a stiff neck, tight shoulders, and wear and tear on the knees. Long term wise, it will also cause back pain, low hip mobility, and prohibit us to sit or walk with good posture, which then leads to more problems... basically a vicious cycle.
What is myofascial release?
Myofascial release is a massage therapy technique used to manage muscle pain and discomfort that has accumulated in your myofascial tissue -- the tough membranes that wrap, connect, and support your muscles, like the psoas (they're pretty important!). Using tools like MFLEX helps to knead and gently stretch these fascia and muscles to work out those stubborn knots.
How to properly release your psoas muscle:
Since the psoas muscle is buried deep inside your torso, it is not as easy to locate as other muscles. Most psoas releases are done through a physical therapist or a physician. However, thanks to the innovative design of MFLEX, you now can safely and easily locate and release your psoas muscle at home.
Step 1: Adjust MFLEX base so it’s slightly narrower than the width of your hip bones.
Step 2: Align MFLEX to your pelvis and gently lay down on your stomach.
Step 3: Relax your whole body, control your breathing, and slowly let your body sink into MFLEX.
Step 4: Adjust MFLEX up and down along the space between your rib cage and your hip bone to massage the entire length of your psoas muscle.
*Tips: In order to release a muscle, it must be completely relaxed first. If your muscle is tense or flexed, then the whole practice is counterproductive. For best results, remember to relax your muscles and let the MFLEX massage your psoas with minimum resistance.
What other parts of my body need myofascial release?
Now you may be thinking, “well, what about the other parts of my body, they get tight and sore too!” Well, you’re not alone, and MFLEX may just be your saving grace. Unlike the other psoas muscle release tools, MFLEX has an adjustable base that you can change to fit different parts of your body other than your psoas muscle. Myofascial release is an amazing tool that can be used on muscles all over the body, especially ones that are overworked, or in fixed positions for long periods of time, like the neck, shoulders, lower back, hips, quads, and feet. You also may have noticed that many of these psoas muscle release tools are shaped in a way that does not seem beginner friendly. That’s why MFLEX comes with two detachable heads, one pair is lower while the other is higher. So, when you’re starting to work on parts of the body that may not be quite ready for the high heads, we recommend you begin with the low heads and work your way up.
When performed regularly, myofascial release can provide many benefits for the body. It can improve your range of motion, reduce soreness by helping to assist the tissue recovery process, improve circulation, help the body relax, and release tension, knots, and even stress!