New A.R.T. Offerings

Posted by on May 15, 2016 in Bodywork Techniques, Exercises, Health and Wellness, Stretches


As San Francisco Bay Area’s premier sports massage and bodywork clinic, we are always working towards providing our clients with some of the best and most effective treatments available. Our crew of therapists love studying new techniques and practicing with each other to perfect their skills. As such, we are excited to announce more A.R.T., Active Release Technique, offerings with therapists David Bacome and Megan Brooks! David and Megan are well known amongst their clients for providing exceptional treatment, and now both being fully A.R.T. certified, can officially add this bodywork method to their impressive repertoires.

Take a look at our video demonstrating what you can expect during your next A.R.T. session. Also, read a bit about this modality as explained by David and why he loves this highly effective technique.


What is A.R.T?
Active Release Technique, commonly referred to as “A.R.T.,” was designed by Dr. Michael Leahy, who discovered a way to maximize the breakup of tension, scar tissues and adhesions. This is done by stretching a muscle or moving a ligament in one direction while holding the adhesion in the other, which effectively and quickly shreds scar tissue and allows the area to fully heal.

Why do you practice A.R.T?
I love how quickly people often see results with difficult issues and the reduction of severe pain, although of course complex or long term issues can produce more gradual progress. I find it’s often empowering for clients who start to see change when they previously believed it to be impossible because their doctors, physical therapists, or other practitioners were unable to provide them with positive results. To see people hopeful about being able to get back to what they love doing and feeling great again is why I wake up and do this. For this reason, A.R.T. has easily become one of my favorite techniques.

Why choose A.R.T.?
It is very effective at breaking up scar tissues, long-held tension, decreasing pain, and help regain ranges of motion that have been limited. It can also often be helpful with stubborn conditions that haven’t fully recovered with conventional therapies. Some issues don’t improve until ligaments, nerves, and joint capsular tissues are treated, and A.R.T. is able to specifically and accurately treat them. There are Active Release protocols, or release motions, for every structure in the body, so it’s a fairly comprehensive treatment system.

What types of conditions or issues would lead you to getting A.R.T.?
Carpal tunnel syndrome, sciatica, headaches, ligament sprains, strained muscles, chronic pain, stiffness, joint immobility, limited ranges of motion, nerve pain and any tension that doesn’t seem to decrease with traditional therapeutic methods.

Can you provide a few examples of successful treatments with A.R.T.?
I’ve seen a handful of people fully recover from carpal tunnel symptoms, regain strength, and not need to wear a brace anymore after a series of ART appointments, which was amazing! More recently several people with surgical plates and screws got their full range of motion back. It’s been amazing seeing people recover from issues they thought they’d live with forever.

What does it feel like and what should a client expect?
A.R.T. sessions are quick (usually 30 minutes, sometimes 15 minutes for tuning up one issue or finishing one area off after improving it significantly). Sessions will start off by feeling any areas a client has pain or issues with as they move it, and based on that examination we’ll identify what needs to be treated. Sessions are stretching intensive as it is required to break up adhesions, knots, and scars in soft tissues. Clients usually wear shorts and a shirt so they can move around to test their pain/weakness/stability/etc. before and after a few areas are treated to see what differences they notice. Based on this feedback the areas are treated again, usually over several sessions, until symptoms are much more resolved. To treat an area I’ll put a muscle or ligament in its shortest position, feel for any abnormal tension, hold my hand against it and comfortably stretch the tissue as far as it can go without pain as the adhesion breaks up.