The hype surrounding the fascia continues. Fight cellulite and strengthen your connective tissue with fascia training. Does that really work? And what else can fascias do?
What are fascias?
Have you ever removed the thin white skin while preparing meat ? These are the fascias. This almost transparent, thin and milky white skin does not look very spectacular at first glance.
The word fascia comes from Latin and means something like “band”, “bundle” or “bandage”. It is also referred to as connective tissue .
The fascia consists of collagen fibers , water and glue and is only 0.5 to 3 millimeters thick. They surround your entire body: muscles, organs, vessels, bones, ligaments, your vision and even your brain. Without this connective tissue with some kind of network-like structure , your body would collapse.
Several continuous fascia lines run throughout your body . It is a kind of chain of muscles, tendons and fascia. This chain is responsible for all movements .
There are three groups of fascia:
- The superficial fascia are part of your subcutaneous tissue . They connect your organs and tissues. They envelop your blood vessels, nerves and glands. And they store fat and water.
- The deep- lying fascia are the densest layers of the connective tissue . They envelop and connect your muscles, bones and joints. The deep fascia react to chemical and mechanical stimuli and are also called “the sixth sense”.
- The visceral fascia envelops and protects your organs. They hold them and keep them in place.
The most important facts in brief :
The gauze-like connective tissue envelops your organs, muscles, vessels, bones, tendons and ligaments. It keeps your body together and ensures that all parts stay neatly in place.
The functions and duties of the fascia
Fascia have very different functions in your body:
- They separate muscles and organs from each other and from the surrounding tissue and bone. They keep everything in place. They also prevent friction between the muscles.
- Power transfer : They transfer power from muscle to muscle.
- They store forces and release them like a spring.
- Transport and supply function : Breakdown and building products of cells are transported back and forth by the lymphs.
- Protective function : They envelop and protect organs and muscles.
- Defense function: As part of the connective tissue, they protect your body against intruders.
- Storage function : Fascia serve as water storage.
- They provide communication between vessels and nerves.
- Mobility: They are responsible for your entire mobility.
- Sense : They respond to mechanical and chemical stimuli and pass them on to your brain.
- Shock absorber function : They absorb the impact of acting forces.
- Shape and figure of your physical appearance .
- They affect your physical and mental condition .
The most important facts in brief :
Fascia has a protective and separating function. They are concerned with power transmission and power generation. They are decisive for your overall mobility and physical appearance. They also serve as a water reservoir and protect your body against intruders.
Why do the fascia stick?
Adhesion of the fascia is not only painful, but also leads to tension and an increased risk of injury .
There are several causes for adhering connective tissue. As you get older, the fascia is more likely to stick. The water content keeps getting smaller, the elasticity decreases. A lack of moisture generally means that your fascia can stick.
However, one of the main reasons for sticking is lack of movement and poor posture . Sitting all the time prevents proper lymph flow. The body’s own glue, which you need for example for the healing of wounds, cannot be transported (properly) in this way.
Continuous stress and a lack of sleep disrupt your hormone balance. Stress hormones are released, which puts your fascia under permanent tension. Increased acidity, caused by incorrect nutrition , can also seriously affect your fascia. The shape of your fascia changes. Your connective tissue becomes gel-like . The movement and transport functions no longer function properly. This ensures an accelerated accumulation of waste products or “slag” .
The consequences: your fascias will stick together.
The consequences for your health
If fascias cannot perform their tasks properly in your body, it has far-reaching consequences for your entire body. Your muscles, ligaments, tendons, joints and organs are affected. Your connective tissue loses flexibility . Back pain, shoulder pain, neck pain, joint pain and tendon irritation or inflammation are common complaints.
The consequences for your muscles
Not only your muscles are involved in your movements. Your fascias also play an important role here. If you have hardened fascia, this limits your freedom of movement . You are more prone to injuries in everyday life and during sports.
You have less success in training because you can no longer exercise within your full range of motion. You suffer from tension . Chances are you are adopting a wrong or cautious attitude .
The consequences for your organs
The stiff connective tissue can pinch your nerves and cause severe pain . Your blood vessels can no longer move as much blood. The strictures affect communication between your nerve cells and your brain.
The lymph flow is disturbed. Side effects can include swollen eyes and heavy legs , swelling and chronic diseases.
Your organs are less well supplied. Harmful substances from your organs are no longer properly removed. If your organs are not adequately cared for over a longer period of time, they can no longer function properly. This can lead to heart, respiratory and digestive problems.
The most important facts in short:
Fluid deficiency and lack of exercise cause your fascia to stick together. Your mobility is limited. You become more prone to injury. Bonded fascia lead to tension and nerve pain. Your organs are less well supplied and in the worst case lose their functionality.
Resolving adhesions – fascial training and exercises
Trained fascias protect your muscles from injury and keep your body in shape. The fascial training strengthens your connective tissue . Your ligaments and tendons become more resilient. And you can prevent pain, such as back pain and shoulder pain . Painful friction in your joints is also reduced.
Fascia adapt to loads and stimuli. You can train them in different ways so that you can loosen adhesions and hardening. The training of connective tissue takes time. It takes longer than your muscles to adapt to the load.
Connective tissue fibers are replaced and the structure of your fascial network is rebuilt. This process can take up to a few months.
The fascial exercises
In addition to classic fascial therapy with a physiotherapist or osteopath, you can also include a few exercises in your own training program.
# 1 Stretching exercises
One possibility are chain exercises and dynamic stretching . You do not stretch one muscle, but a muscle group. While stretching you perform light swinging movements . This keeps the fascia supple and elastic. And you reduce the risk of injuries .
# 2 Springy movements
Elastic, springy movements, such as hopping and jumping , also train your fascia. In this way you stimulate collagen production and strengthen your connective tissue.
# 3 Fascia roll and massage
Massages , such as with a fascia roll, can also have a supportive effect. Self-massage stimulates the cells in your connective tissue and your blood circulation. This creates a “sponge effect” . Which results in an exchange of fluids in your connective tissue.
Our tip: training with a fascia roll can be very painful. Do not go beyond your pain threshold and get informed about the correct technique in advance.
# 4 Fascia, yoga and pilates
Thanks to the springy, compound and stretching exercises , yoga and pilates are also very suitable for taking care of your fascia.
Fascia training plan
You are probably wondering how, in addition to your busy daily life and your “normal” muscle training, you also have time for fascia training? Don’t worry, your fascias do n’t need a long workout . Short training units are sufficient.
You can for example in dynamic stretching exercises in your warm-up integration . And after training you can roll out your muscles with a fascia roll. Or you incorporate a few jumping or spring movements into your daily rhythm. If you are waiting for the tram, bus or train, you can, for example, jump on the spot a few times.
The most important things in brief:
You only need a few minutes for your fascial training. Stretching exercises, spring movements, massages, fascia rolls, fascia yoga and pilates are particularly suitable.
The influence of nutrition – nutritional tips
As with strength training, exercise is only one side of the coin. You will achieve the best results if your diet also matches your training goal.
A wrong diet can lead to acidification of your fascia. Make sure to eat more basic foods . This supports the regeneration of your connective tissue and balances your acid-base balance. Suitable are: salad, vegetables, fruits, coconuts and herbal tea.
Fascia consists of collagen, a fibrous protein . If you are protein deficient , your fascial tissue will lose its important functions. Your connective tissue cannot regenerate, heal and grow. Proteins are therefore not only good for your muscles, but also for your fascia.
Your body also needs the amino acid lysine for collagen formation . This is found in whole grain products, walnuts, quinoa, buckwheat or dairy products.
Also, don’t forget to bring a good supply of micronutrients. For example, zinc and vitamin C are also involved in collagen production.
Your connective tissue consists of 75% moisture. Drink at least 2-3 liters of pure water per day to properly hydrate your tissue.
The most important facts in short :
Combine training with the right nutrition. Watch your acid-base balance. Provide sufficient micronutrients, such as vitamins, minerals and trace elements. Drink 2-3 liters of water per day. Provide your body with complex carbohydrates, healthy fats and sufficient protein.
Fascial training: Prevent connective tissue weakness and cellulite
Cellulite , dents or orange peel skin are caused by a combination of genetic disorders, weak connective tissue and fat deposits . But why are women more likely to suffer from cellulite than men?
This has to do with the structure of the fascia. In men , the fascia are cruciform, while in women they are columnar and parallel. Its columnar structure makes women’s connective tissue more prone to cellulite . Fat cells can push their way up through the columnar structure. And that creates bumps and dents .
You can stimulate your connective tissue through targeted training . You ensure that more collagen fibers are produced. Your connective tissue becomes stronger and firmer. The fat cells find it more difficult to push themselves up. The combination of strength training, fascial training and nutrition can reduce cellulite and improve your skin texture .
The most important facts in brief :
Women’s connective tissue has a different structure and is therefore more sensitive to knocks and dents. Fascia training strengthens your connective tissue and can reduce cellulite.
- Fascia keep us together like a species and shape our appearance.
- Fascia have many important functions in our body.
- Bonded and hardened fascias have serious consequences for your body.
- You can train your connective tissue with stretching, jumping, bouncing exercises, massage, yoga or pilates.
- You can easily integrate the training into your daily life.
- Eat good carbohydrates, healthy fats and enough protein.
- Pay attention to the supply of micronutrients.
- With fascial training you can reduce cellulite.