Radoslav Radulov: Fascia is the most unknown and ignored tissue in the prevention and treatment of the body

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Radoslav Radulov: Fascia is the most unknown and ignored tissue in the prevention and treatment of the body
Radoslav Radulov: Fascia is the most unknown and ignored tissue in the prevention and treatment of the body

Radoslav Radulov is a kinesitherapist and physiotherapist who uses methods from holistic, innovative and traditional folk medicine. He is a teacher of kinesio taping and Bowen for the European Collage of Bowen Study, UK. He defended his master's thesis at the Academy of Medicine on Paneurthymia as a means of improving public he alth. He uses in his practice the new understanding of the anatomy of the human body and the physiological processes in it, according to which fascia and myofascial relaxation are the main subject of research, work and impact. Here is what Radulov shared on this topic especially for "Doctor" magazine.

Mr. Radulov, what are fascia?

- Fascia (a type of connective tissue) is perhaps the most important, unknown and ignored tissue in modern medicine. Large physiotherapy congresses are devoted to it. This year the Congress of Connective Tissue Researchers was in Berlin, and last year it was in Ulm, also in Germany, where the Fascia Research Institute is located. At these congresses, the means of treating the fascia for the purposes of prevention and treatment of the body are presented.

Fascia is both an organ and a reservoir for water and metabolic waste, but not only that. Fascia holds all parts of the body together. The body is a system of compressive element (bones) and tension element (connective tissue structures, fascia). Fascia is not well represented in anatomy textbooks, its properties and structure are not well known. And it represents between 70 and 80% of our physical body. Every organ, muscle, blood vessel, every cell is wrapped in fascia. From a neurological perspective

fascia is an independent information system

without the involvement of the central nervous system. With a thought, with a hormonal change, with every biochemical process in the body, there is an automatic transmission of information in this connective tissue. It is controlled by the reptilian brain, responsible for unconscious processes in the body. Fascia is both an organ and an information system.

Since it covers muscles and organs in applied kinesiology, fascia is considered as a connecting link between them. In effect, the muscle is a reservoir of nutrients for the adjacent organ. Thomas Meier's connective tissue meridians, which he called Anatomy trains, coincide 90% with the meridians of Chinese medicine. The vital energy that flows through them is converted from biochemical (in the visceral fascia in the abdominal area) to kinetic (in the fascia around the muscles) and serves the biomechanics of the body and its existence as a whole.


Radoslav Radulov

What is achieved with myofascial relaxation?

- When we act on myofascial points and meridians, we physical therapists can release energy for organs and muscles or reduce the load on internal organs. The release of, for example, the flexor chain of the forearm, biceps and pectoral muscles, positively affects the lung. When these muscles are relaxed and relaxed, an improvement occurs in the respiratory system. In this way, we indirectly influence the nervous system, respectively the hormonal secretion.

Remedial gymnastics, tai chi, paneurthymia, etc., have similar effects by influencing the fascia, which makes them very successful means of prevention and he alth prevention.

Until we have a modern scientific understanding of the role of fascia, there will be no modern physiotherapy and no modern sports rehabilitation. It is outdated to understand that the patient has a disease, for example a herniated disc, that we need to treat. We need to look at the patient's problems holistically, understand why he is in this condition, to help him overcome it.

What actually makes us sick?

- He alth according to WHO definition is mental, physical and social well-being. We must find out which of these three aspects of he alth is impaired. In modern times, there are three types of causes that plague he alth - lack of a loving social environment, immobility and stress. They directly affect the connective tissue (fascia). She is in excellent running condition. Static loading is the worst type of loading for fascia. Most fitness instructors recommend to their clients planks - static isometric contractions, and cardio. They largely contribute to the acidic environment in the body. Reasonable exercise should be in the parasympathetic mode of the nervous system. Such a load is obtained through paneurthymia, Tai chi, dances with light and with a wide variety of volumes and movements performed with mood. Through their reasonable volume and pace of movement exercises

we support circulatory processes

we consistently open organs and systems to prepare the body for daily needs. The creator of paneurthymia - the teacher Petar Dunov - recommends playing in the morning when the body is hydrated. Because the fascia is mostly water and when we restore the water balance in the body, we will open the respiratory system and prepare for the next loads. We get the opposite effect if we perform any exercise at the end of a stressful work day, when the body is exhausted, the supply of nutrients in the blood has also decreased and dehydration has occurred. At this time of day, the fascia is not in the right state to be stretched. This is why micro-tears of the fascia occur, leading to trauma.

Teacher Danov knew this, and it was no coincidence that he had a medical education, and he created paneurthymia as a practice for us, for our time and our way of life. While Asian practices were created for a different time, different climate, for people with a different way of eating, other needs and way of thinking.



Folk dance groups for amateurs are now popular in Bulgaria. Do you recommend them for he alth?

- Yes, I recommend them because folk dances are part of our roots. The fascination with folk dances is an attempt to return to our nature. Folk dances bring us psycho-emotional relaxation. In them, we have enough active movements that are performed in rhythm - similar to pan-rhythm. With each exercise that is performed with a specific rhythm, the body enters an energy-saving mode and makes it easier.

Folk dancing activates the work of the extensors - the muscles that straighten the body, mainly the back, and the load goes mainly to the calf and gluteal muscles. And it is precisely these muscles that are stunted the most by immobilization. Most people I see in my practice have a problem with shortened flexors due to immobilization.

Folk dances have a social meaning and put enough strain on the body. By the way, at the end of the pan-rhythm, in the so-called "Sunrays" exercise, the rhythm is seven-eighths like the handstand. But it is reached after the body has already been prepared and gradually loaded. Really the merriment we used to perform as kids at school in the morning,

includes 17 pan-rhythm exercises

These are mostly male, straight-line, electric exercises at the expense of female, magnetic exercises, which has somewhat hurt the performers. But if now an adult goes to play pan-rhythm for the first time, he will recognize many of the exercises and do them automatically. Any automated exercise for which a motor habit has been established is performed with less concentration and mental effort. Accordingly, there is psycho-emotional relaxation and transition into the mode of the parasympathetic, involuntary nervous system.

Which kinesitherapeutic techniques affect the fascia?

- Through the Bowen method, Kinesio taping, Roving and other techniques affecting connective tissue structures: soft tissues, fascia, myofascia, tendons and muscles. Now comes the "dry needling" method, similar to acupuncture, affecting connective tissue structures: soft tissues, fascia, myofascia, tendons and muscles.

In modern surgery, they now consider the myofascial concept of human anatomy and physiology and choose surgical approaches that are less traumatic, that injure less myofascial tissue.

When giving birth by section, we damage one of the most important areas of the body - the abdominal muscles and the waist corset. This inevitably affects the myofascial chains, they are interrupted, and the load on the back becomes enormous. This is a prerequisite for future complications and a lot of pain in the back. Any abdominal surgery has the same adverse consequences. Therefore, operations with sparing access are preferable. The best option is to save the scalpel if possible.

Explain the meaning of prevention through movement

- If an injury to the meniscus or ligaments of the knee is not the result of trauma or a sudden event, it is the result of limited and shortened adductors, of weak glutes. If we take care of the good functionality of the musculature, which determines the stability and mobility of the knee, there will be no injuries. When the fascia in certain areas loses its ability to stretch

due to immobilization,

it sticks together and then the symptoms are stiffness, pain, incorrect posture of the body. These adhesions are described by Gil Headley and called by him "fuzz". Fuzz accumulates between tissues and muscles that do not perform movements. When we perform the same type of movements, the body takes the corresponding shape. Form follows function. To change this incorrect form, we need to apply multi-directional actions - a wide variety of stretching exercises with a high number of repetitions, but not in cardio mode. Morning exercises are indispensable in this regard, so that we can maintain the elasticity of the fascia. This is precisely the prevention of arthritic changes in the joints, cardiovascular and respiratory system problems.

Psycho-emotional comfort is also decisive for the good condition of the fascia. We must begin with breathing exercises, for breathing is highest in the vital hierarchy. Next in importance is hydration, sufficient and reasonable water intake. Then there are the smooth movements in the necessary volume and in different directions, in order to keep the fascia elastic and not to shorten and weaken some muscles at the expense of others, so that there is a balance between the different muscle groups. All this should be supported by a good mood. This is the best approach to prevention and he alth prevention.


Radoslav Radulov with the creator of kinesio taping Prof. Kenzo Kase

What do you offer as a specialized therapy affecting the fascia?

- In my practice I use different varieties of myofascial therapy. In addition, I also give exercises. Adhesions of the fascia (fuzz) can be removed by physical slow and smooth exercises in the fresh air. I follow the systemic therapeutic approach. I find out what is he althy in the body and start from there.

I use Bowen Method

in which I activate the parasympathetic, i.e. the autonomic nervous system, thanks to which the body enters self-recovery mode. Through Bowen, the body relaxes and cleanses itself of metabolic waste. I can work on one or other organs or muscle groups. The special thing here is that we never know how the body will respond to therapy, we only guess based on experience. But the body always turns to self-healing and solving the higher-hierarchy problem. For example, it will not repair a muscle at the expense of the organ that the muscle supplies. For a person with a functional problem in the musculoskeletal system and with a deficiency of an organ or an endocrine gland, under the influence of the Bowen method, the body will solve the higher hierarchical problem - of the organ and the gland.

I also use kinesio taping in my practice, which is based on the myofascial concept. In this method, by means of elastic tape stuck to certain places on the skin, I affect muscles and organs through the fascia. This way you can relax or strain one or another organ.

Kinesio taping in combination with bowen allows me to create my own methodology, which I apply according to the individual problems of the patients. Before that, I take an anamnesis, what are the concomitant diseases, I review the biochemical indicators and the results of imaging diagnostics. Based on all this, I create a treatment program that I start working on. Sometimes the effect is very fast. With kinesio tape (special patches on the skin) it happens in seconds because the fascia transmits the information very quickly and thus systems or pathological patterns are released. The body immediately recognizes the effect of the stimulation.

I also use purely manual soft tissue impact techniques. With very gentle movements, I knead, relax and stretch the fascia. It recognizes non-violent movements, different even from massage, because its role is protective - to shorten and protect muscles and organs from pressure. The fascia feels good from non-invasive manipulations, but it also needs excellent hydration and time to assume the most physiological form. The fascia equalizes the intracellular with the atmospheric pressure outside. Breathing practices in fresh air and smooth movements are also beneficial to her. When the fascia feels good, the organs and systems feel good too. Then the person also feels good psycho-emotionally. If we consider a person as a way of thinking, a way of moving and a way of eating, I would put the highest in the hierarchy the way of thinking. Thought determines both nutrition and movement. And here is the problem, because patients come to us to solve some orthopedic problem, and we have to find the right psychological approach, to understand what psycho-emotional condition this person has this physiological problem. Then we must become psychologists and find out what events around the patient create a negative emotional background, steal his vital energy and make him sick. Instead, we must find the things that bring him joy, happiness and with that he alth. It is not so much the length of life as the quality of life.


Teacher Denov called the shell "matrix"

In his talks from 1926, Petar Dunov spoke about the fascia, calling it the "matrix". In English-speaking countries, they speak of "extracellular matrix" (pericellular matrix), which is again fascia, the same connective tissue. Recently there was a "news" in the media that Americans have discovered a new organ in the human body - "interstitium". I guess they are opening it now for some publicity purpose. But twenty years ago Americans discovered this organ again and called it "connective tissue". Before them, other scientists had seen and described it. Fascia is nothing new and unseen, but something that has been known for a long time. And since all the fascia needs is green food, water, psycho-emotional comfort and movement, there is a vested interest in medicine and industry in keeping this from being known and people getting sicker and more medicated.