What comes to mind when you hear the word “fascia?” It seems to be one of the more popular buzz words in the fitness industry. Fascial fitness, fascial stretching, fascial movement…it is paired with so many fitness terms, even fascial yoga.
Fascia is the connective tissue in your body that creates a web or network of tissues surrounding and supporting muscles, ligaments, tendons, bones as well as your internal organs. It is a fluid tissue containing blood and nerves that send signals throughout the body. Although fascia is primarily made up of water, the second largest material is collagen. This “glue” is what “connects” the pieces of the puzzle (muscles, tendons, ligaments, etc) together in an organized fashion. There is a strength component to this connective tissue being able to withstand compressive forces as well as an elastic component designed to resist the pull, both sides in a give and take relationship.
Too scientific? Look at it this way…when you go out for coffee and the waiter serves it to you, does he pour it out on the counter without putting a cup under the pot? Pretty difficult to drink your coffee that way! Well, that coffee that splashed all over the counter is like your muscle. Without a cup, there is no integrity to the coffee and you are unable to drink it. Without fascia, your muscle has no integrity and you would not be able to lift your arm or perform a squat. It’s fascia that determines your structure and allows you to move, even more than muscles and bones.
Because fascia is made up mostly of water it is important to keep it hydrated. Does drinking more water come to mind? Not water, but movement is the number one method! We are 3D beings, so we must not limit ourselves to linear movements. Yoga is one of the best programs to hydrate fascia as we move in all planes of motion. Become more in tune to the fascial network unique to your body- Yoga can get you there.