5 Reasons to Try Active Release Therapy

5 Reasons to Try Active Release Therapy

Active Release Therapy (ART) is a technique that has been around for over 30 years. 

It was first developed by a Chiropractor named Dr. P. Michael Leahy. He was looking for a way to treat soft tissue problems in athletes and had a lot of success using a technique that combined massage and active movement.

ART works by identifying restrictions in your body to release tightness, improving local blood flow and range of motion.

What conditions does active release technique treat?

Many conditons and injuries usually present because of overuse. When this happens your body starts to produce dense collections of scar tissue that binds between your muscles. This causes pain, stiffness, and restrictions in your movement. When scar tissue builds up your muscles become shorter and weaker. 

The goal of Active Release Therapy is to reduce the tightness associated with this scar tissue to relieve pain and allow you to move freely without restrictions. It also helps to reduce pain and discomfort all over your body.

Active Release technique can treat:

  • Nerves
  • Tendons
  • Ligaments
  • Muscles
  • Neck pain
  • Back pain
  • Headaches
  • Plantar fasciitis
  • Fibromyalgia
  • And more

Soft Tissue Release benefits courtesy of Vitality Physiotherapy and Wellness Centre. (Read the caption)

What happens during an art treatment session?

When you consult a Chiropractor they will apply deep pressure to tight muscles associated with your injury. While applying this pressure they will have you lengthen the affected area through movement. This movement allows the tissue to glide over each other to release the muscle. Not only that, it also stimulates your bodies natural healing mechanisms to increase circulation which drives more blood flow to the injured area to accelerate healing. 

ART also works to:

  • Reduce pain
  • Increase range of motion
  • Reduce stiffness

5 reasons you should try ART

ART treatments are helpful for a variety of reasons. Take a look below to learn how it can help you!

1.) Prevent injuries

Scar tissue build up can cause your muscles to shorten and tighten. When this happens your chances of injury from strains, pulls, tears, and other injuries increases. ART works to reduce the tightness that comes on with scar tissue build-up.

2.) Enhance athletic performance

ART releases scar tissue that prevents you from performing at your best. This makes you more limber and able to move better.

Research shows that Active Release Therapy helps improve athletic performance especially during running.

3.) Reduces chronic lower back pain

Lower back pain is one of the most common conditions worldwide, affecting many people in their life time. Lower back pain can be caused by scar tissue build-up which can irritate nerves especially in the glutes and upper legs. ART can release this scar tissue, freeing up the nerves to relieve the pain.

Lower Back Mobility courtesy of Active Balance Physiotherapy. (Read the caption)

4.) Improve your flexibilty

Scarring around your muscles and joints can dramatically affect your flexibility. ART has been proven to be effective at increasing flexibility even after just one treatment session.

5.) Enhances quality of life

Chronic pain in your neck or back can dramatically affect your quality of life. ART can help alleviate the pain allowing you to get back to doing what you love again, pain-free or mostly pain-free.

Best of all it’s a natural and safe treatment instead of taking pain killers that can come with some nasty side effects.

There you have it, 5 reasons to try active release therapy. If you’d like to find a Chiropractor near you that performs active release therapy use the search box on this page.


What is Soft Tissue Release courtesy of Affinity Family Wellness. (Read Caption)


This appointment is your opportunity to tell us what hurts and discover whether physiotherapy or chiropractic care is a good fit for you! During this session, you will talk with a physiotherapist or chiropractor on a phone call (or online) and create the right care plan specifically for your pain. There is no obligation on this session is to find out whether physiotherapy or chiropractic care can help you getting back to doing the things you love in life.

Frequently Asked Questions

You may feel sore after, but that should go away within a day.

It depends on your condition and goals. For the fastest results you may start with 2-3 treatments a week then wean down until you have the relief you need. Some people only need one treatment.

Yes it can be painful because of the precise pressure. But after your session, it can relieve your pain.

About Taylor Sipos

Taylor is a physiotherapist at The Orthopaedic Therapy Clinic located in Toronto, Ontario. He treats patients with various musculoskeletal conditions using patient education, exercise therapy, manual therapy and acupuncture. His treatment philosophy involves giving his patient’s the means to self-manage their injuries. He does this through reassurance, education and health promotion. Taylor uses the same principles as a patient educator at Pain Hero. He aims to provide you with high-quality, easy to understand information to teach you about your condition and how to improve it.

Medical Disclaimer:

The information presented in this blog post is for educational purposes and should not be interpreted as medical advice. If you are seeking medical advice, treatment or a diagnosis, consult with a medical professional such as one suggested on this website. The Clinic Accelerator Inc. and the author of this page are not liable for the associated risks of using or acting upon the information contained in this article.

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