When people who are in pain come to see us three or four things can happen; they can get better despite our help (self-healing), they can get better because they perceive what we do will work (placebo effect), or they can get better because what we do does work (appropriate intervention). Teaching them self-help techniques can reinforce these gains as well as give the sufferer additional control over their issue.
The Trigger Point Therapy Workbook 1st Edition
Clair ‘Cork’ Davies was a pain sufferer back in the 1990s. He was a piano tuner, technician and rebuilder in the Lexington, KY area who had developed a stubborn ‘frozen shoulder’. After reading Travell and Simons he ‘cured’ his shoulder in just four weeks using self-pressure techniques (some of the best teachers emerge by solving their own problems). He went on to author the Trigger Point Therapy Workbook and The Frozen Shoulder Workbook, and run self-help workshops with his daughter Amber. Although Clair died in 2006 he has touched the lives of hundreds of massage therapists and thousands of ordinary, hurting people.
The Trigger Point Therapy Workbook 3rd Edition
The first and second editions have sold 350,000 copies since 2001. In the newly revised third edition, daughter Amber has modernized the pain science, and added symptoms guides, new drawings and techniques; another 30 pages-worth. At the recent NAMTPT conference she demonstrated many of these highly effective techniques. My hip thanks you, Amber. Although written for the lay-person, the book, and her website, includes plenty of science, references, resources and not-so-well-known techniques for the curious manual therapist.
The David emerges
I often use the metaphor with my clients of Michelangelo seeing a David inside a marble block. To get the David out he couldn’t use a sledgehammer. He had to chip away, chip away. We can use this approach for trigger point deactivation. Davies recommends self-pressure, repeated many times a day. Follow this up with gentle, rhythmic repeated stretching and the David will emerge. Chip away at the pain.