The Active Release Technique (A.R.T.) – Active Care Chiropractic York

Active Release Technique (A.R.T.) involves a form of non-invasive massage therapy that helps us to locate scar tissues and treat soft tissue injuries. It is a patented technique involving an in-person course and examination to register as a provider. Some of the most common issues that A.R.T. can treat include; back, neck and shoulder pain, as well as debilitating conditions like carpal tunnel syndrome and repetitive strain injuries. ART is often considered as one of the most effective at treating soft tissue and muscle injuries due to its efficiency and ability to produce rapid treatment results.

How Does Active Release Technique (A.R.T.) Work?

A.R.T. is a 2-step process, involving the identification of structures through touch and movement, as well as treatment. As providers, we can be confident in identifying specific tissues, be they muscles, tendons or ligaments which ensures we are treating the source of the problem.

The cause of soft tissue damage that is causing pain is usually a build-up of scar tissue. Scar tissue formation reduces blood flow, shortens and weakens soft tissue, and restricts movement and function of the afflicted muscles and joints. In addition to causing pain, scar tissue can cause nerves to become trapped, resulting in numbness or tingling. A.R.T. addresses the underlying cause of the issue, resulting in rapid resolution and long-lasting pain alleviation.

Who Does Active Release Technique (A.R.T.) Help?

This technique is not exclusive to one group of people or a certain kind of injury. In fact, it is designed to help people of all ages by treating chronic pains being caused by soft tissue abnormalities. 

The formation of scar tissue can occur over time (through the overuse of certain muscles, joints and ligaments)  or you can damage these tissues in one singular instance (for example, straining whilst lifting a heavy load in the workplace).

Active release technique is also commonly used by professional sportspeople and athletes to help relieve pains caused by the overuse of parts of their bodies. Using this technique can help these people with injury prevention or injury treatment, and in the UK, Premier League football clubs such as Arsenal and Newcastle United have registered A.R.T. providers on their medical teams.

Which Common Ailments & Injuries Does Active Release Technique (A.R.T) Treat?

As briefly mentioned above, A.R.T. is there to provide treatment to a whole range of people with different problems. Because there are over 500 different treatment protocols A.R.T. therapy is most certainly not a one size fits all approach to chiropractic treatment. However, below are some of the most common problems that can be treated effectively with Active Release Technique.

Sciatica Shoulder Pain Neck Pain Back Pain Sports Injuries Frozen Shoulder Headaches Carpal Tunnel Repetitive Strain Injuries (RSI) And More…


What To Expect From an Active Release Technique (A.R.T.) Session?

Here at Active Care Chiropractic, our A.R.T. sessions work to combine examination with treatment. One of our friendly chiropractors will first use their hands to observe different parts of the muscles, tendons and ligaments whilst looking for where abnormalities in the soft tissue are. 


To then treat these abnormal tissues, the techniques will combine carefully guided pressure and tension on the affected area with specific movements from you (the patient) to help alleviate pain and improve the mobility that has been affected by soft tissue abnormalities.

At Active Care Chiropractic we want every patient that we see to feel comfortable and relaxed in our clinic. So, if you would like to know some more about what you can expect on your first, take a look at this page for more information.

Active Release Techniques – Aftercare Exercises

In order to ensure the painful symptoms brought on through soft tissue abnormalities do not return, it is important to regularly focus different exercises on the area to keep tissues strong. To prevent the return of symptoms, any exercise programme has to focus on the following 4 essential areas:

Muscular & Aerobic Endurance.

A common cause of the degradation of soft tissues that leads to pain is a lack of oxygen to muscles, tendons and ligaments. By partaking in cardiovascular exercises regularly and training affected muscles for endurance you will greatly increase circulation and ward off a relapse of painful symptoms.

Stretching & Flexibility Exercises.

Muscles and joints should be able to move through their complete range of motion with good flexibility. Muscle, tendon, and ligament injuries are more likely to occur when one is not flexible enough. Joint-specific flexibility means that a person may have exceptional range of motion in one joint while having limited range of motion in another. However, only once the adhesions inside the soft tissue have been removed are stretching exercises helpful.  

Proprioception & Balance.

The capacity of the body to respond effectively to outside pressures (via balance and touch) is referred to as proprioception. Exercises to improve proprioception should start early in the recovery process.  The agility, strength, and endurance needed for thorough recovery from soft tissue damage are built upon this kind of exercise.

Strength Training.

Strengthening exercises should only be done after A.R.T. therapy has been fully completed by one of our chiropractors. If strength conditioning is undertaken whilst affected muscle movement is still restricted, then there is a risk of further aggravating the underlying issue – resulting in a longer recovery period.