Muscle Activation Technique (MAT)

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Muscle Activation Technique (MAT) is a revolutionary muscle technique that treats neuromuscular imbalances that cause pain and limits performance. Unlike other modalities, MAT gets to the root of the pain by addressing muscle weakenss rather than muscle tightness. MAT is built upon a strong scientific foundation and is combined with years of practical application in the clinical treatment for correcting muscular imbalances and repetitive stress type injuries to eliminate pain, reduce risk of injury, and improve overall performance. 

When muscles across a joint become weakened, other muscles across that joint will become tight to prevent the joint from going into a position of weakenss or instability. These tightened muscles can create excess friction in the joint causing an inflammatory response that can eventually lead to further joint degeneration.

MAT views muscle tightness as the body's natural protection mechanism that is activated when the brain detects an unstable joint due to weakness. Simply stretching, massaging, or manipulating the joint in order to release tightness does not get to the root of the problem. MAT directly addresses the dysfunctional muscles responsible for joint instability and restores normal joint function by eliminating the body's need for muscle tightness without overriding its important protective mechanism. 

Many times due to factors such as stress, trauma, or overuse, the neurological connections of muscles may become altered creating a reaction in the body, similar to loose battery cables in cars. When the brain sends a message for a muscle to contract, and the muscle does not respond immediately, it creates increased demand on other muscles to perform the desired movement. The result of this increase in demand is what we call compensation. Over time, these compensation patterns create altered alignment in the joint, leading to joint instability and abnormal wear on the joint surfaces. The end result becomes pain and can eventually lead to osteoarthritis. This progressive degeneration has been correlated with aging. If identified and properly addressed, it does not have to occur, and overall performance can actual improve. 

The 4 Step Process of Muscle Activation Technique:

Step 1: Range of Motion
The first part of the MAT process is to identify what restrictions in movement may be occurring at the joint. This series of test referred to as a comparative assessment of mobility will identify restrictions in joint range and guide the MAT specialist to the muscles that may be inhibited or weakened.

Step 2: Muscle Test
The muscle testing process is what really sets Muscle Activation Technique apart from other types of therapy. This process is performed precisely with very little pressure or stress and is done for the purpose of testing the neurological ability of a specific muscle.

Step 3: Muscle Treatment
Then a precision palpation technique is performed to the muscle to restore communication back to the central nervous system. This process is referred to as "jump starting the muscle". Isometric exercises specific to the identified weaknesses are given to reinforce the neurological connection between the central nervous system and the muscle.

Step 4
Step 2 and 1 are repeated to determine if the muscle function and range of motion have been restored. 

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