What Are Rockblades?
I had the opportunity to take a continuing education course for Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Manipulation/IASTM with a focus on Rockblades. Rockblades have four distinct edges so you can maneuver the tool around different bony surfaces depending on which area of the body you are treating.
The tools have several techniques that can be used which are gliding over a muscle to assess the tissue (feeling for grainy texture or bumps), feathering (for painful areas), scraping, oscillation (vibration), and chopping. The techniques used focus on releasing fascia around adhesion/scar tissue, with a goal of pain relief and returning the body to functional movement. The course focused on proprioceptive neurological training of the muscles.
Using sensory stimulation of internal force (Golgi receptors), Rapid Pressure (Pacinian receptors, much like fast movements that wake the muscle up and get ready for a sports activity), Ruffini receptors (long holds like releasing trigger points), and interceptors (light touch).
Using a variety of receptors depending on the goal of the client, rockblades help bring the body into functional movement faster than other therapeutic methods and in a nonpainful approach. Changing the angle of the tool and depth allows for more intense or less intense treatment.
How We Tested The Rockblade During The Training
We were also taught different assessments, utilizing a squat test, one-legged balance, and lunge test. The tests help discover what areas of the body to target and treat. The idea is to bring the body back into balance before fitness training to prevent injury. Treat the muscles and imbalances, then begin a fitness or exercise plan to strengthen the muscles.
I am very excited to add this to my massage treatments. If you would like to try it out please mention it to me otherwise look forward to me suggesting it!