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odywork Masterclass
Bodywork Masterclass Series-5
Learning to Release Muscles with MET

© Leon Chaitow ND, DO, MRO

DiGiovanna9 states that side-effects are minimal with MET, ‘MET is quite safe. Occasionally some muscle stiffness and soreness after treatment. If the area being treated is not localised well or if too much contractive force is used pain may be increased. Sometimes the patient is in too much pain to contract a muscle or may be unable to cooperate with instructions or positioning. In such instances MET may be difficult to apply.’

Note for Beginners
If beginners to MET stay within the very simple guideline which states categorically - cause no pain when using MET - and stick to light (20% of strength) contractions, and do not stretch over-enthusiastically but only take muscles a short way past their restriction barrier when stretching, no side effects are likely apart from the soreness mentioned above, and this is a normal part of all manual methods of treatment.

In the next article in this series an introduction will be given to the ultra-safe methods of ‘positional release’ including Strain/ counterstrain.

Leon Chaitow DO, former editor of JACM, practices at The Hale Clinic London (0171-631-0156). He teaches widely in the UK, Europe and the USA, and is author of major textbooks including ‘Soft tissue Manipulation’ (available from Green Library). He is a senior lecturer on the University of Westminster’s MA in Therapeutic Bodywork course.

1. Goodridge J MET, Definition, explanation, methods of procedure. Journal American Osteopathic Association, Vol. 81, No. 4, P249 1981

2. Scariati P Neurophysiology relevant to osteopathic manipulation in DiGiovanna E(ed) Osteopathic Approach to Diagnosis and treatment Lippincott Philadelphia 1991

3. Guissard N et al Muscle stretching and motorneurone excitability. European journal of applied Physiology 58pp47-52 1988

4. Lewit K Muscular and articular factors in movement restriction Manual medicine 1:83-85 1985

5. Janda V (in Grant R) Physical Therapy of the cervical and thoracic spine. Churchill Livingstone New York 1988

6. Mattes A Active and assisted stretching Mattes Sarasota Florida 1990

7. Liebenson C Active Muscular Relaxation Methods J Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics 12(6)198

8. GreenmanP Principles of Manual Medicine Williams&Wilkins Baltimore 1989

9. DiGiovanna E An Osteopathic Approach to Diagnosis and Treatment Lippincott 1991

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About The Author
A practicing naturopath, osteopath, and acupuncturist in the United Kingdom, with over forty years clinical experience, Chaitow is Editor-in-Chief, of the Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies. He regularly lectures in the United States as well as Europe where he instructs......more
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