Carpal Tunnel Trigger Finger

Carpal Tunnel syndrome occurs when the median nerve, which runs from the forearm into the palm of the hand, becomes compressed or squeezed at the wrist, or somewhere along the course the nerve. Common treatments of carpal tunnel include surgery and medication, but these are not necessary with a treatment plan that includes the use of ART. Individual ART protocols have been designed to treat the median nerve and the muscles and ligaments that can compress the nerve. The release of the related muscles and the nerve itself by administration of Active Release Technique is the best modality of treating carpal tunnel syndrome

LBP—and relation of psoas

Cases of low back pain, facet syndrome, back pain with menstruation, and hip not extending well during gait all have one thing in common…The Psoas/Iliacus muscles. In each of the situations above the psoas and iliacus become accustomed to being in a shortened position, forming adhesions preventing the complete relief of symptoms. ART is the most efficient treatment at removing these adhesions and allowing the muscle to relax and function properly

Medial/Lateral Epicondylitis

Epicondylitis is one of the most common elbow problems in adults, occurring on both sides of the elbow. (Lateral epicondylitis AKA “tennis elbow” and medial epicondylitis AKA “golfer’s elbow”). Each of these conditions is triggered by overuse injuries to the musculotendinous junction of the muscles of the forearm. This results in pain and inflammation of the tendons where they attach at the elbow. ART is highly efficient at decreasing the pain and inflammation caused by epicondylitis. The removal of adhesions formed in the muscles, tension is taken off of the tendons where they attach allowing restoration of proper muscle function

Piriformis syndrome

The muscles of the posterior hip are commonly involved in cases of low back and leg pain and in cases of pain radiating down the leg. The same way that adhesions form in individual muscles adhesions can also form between muscles and structures surrounding those muscles. One of those structures is the sciatic nerve. ART has been shown to be very effective at not only decreasing adhesions in the muscles of the posterior hip, but also releasing adhesions that build between the sciatic nerve and surrounding muscles

Plantar fasciitis

Pain when walking/running, cramping in the foot during rest, running or swimming.

There are several muscles and related soft tissue structures in the foot and each has a specific job. When any of these soft tissue structures are injured or become too tight the function of that structure changes the biomechanics of the structures around it also change. The application of ART is beneficial at both helping to diagnose the specific structures involved but also in the treatment of those structures by returning normal tone, texture and most importantly function to the area.

Lateral knee pain

Commonly seen in runners and cyclists

One of the common causes of lateral knee pain is the result of an over active iliotibial band. The IT band is a thick band of fascia on the outside of the leg that attaches to the knee. The IT band functions to help stabilize the knee during running. When the IT band becomes injured and becomes overactive due to repeated flexion and extension of the knee during running causes the area to become inflamed. This inflammation leads to the formation of adhesions in the tissue as a way of preventing further injury by limiting the range of pain free motion. The administration of ART has been shown to be invaluable in the treatment and prevention by breaking up these adhesions and helping to restore normal function to the knee

Rotator Cuff Injuries

There are many conditions that can affect the shoulder; one of the most common is damage to the rotator cuff. The rotator cuff is made up of 4 muscles that help to move and stabilize the shoulder joint which is comprised of 3 bones. Injuries to the rotator cuff range from varied grades of strain, injury to the musculotendinous, varied grades of tears to one or multiple muscles, tendinitis or arthritis. With any of these injuries the result is often pain, spasm, fluid accumulation within the joint due to inflammation and all of these lead to a decrease range of motion. No matter what the type of injury is or whether surgery needs to be done or has been done, the treatment must include restoring proper function to the muscles and the shoulder. ART is essential in this process. By releasing adhesions in the muscles, tendons and joint capsules that comprise the shoulder proper mechanics can be restored to these structures helping to return proper range of motion and helping to prevent further injury.

Upper Back

The likelihood that your job requires you to spend a good amount of time at a computer is pretty good. Even if your job doesn’t, the chance that your posture is putting increased tension on the muscles and joints of the upper back and neck is all too common. Active Release Technique is a crucial measure that must be utilized in the process of retraining your body to maintain an ideal posture. The initiation of this retraining starts with the restoration of proper functioning of muscles by releasing adhesions formed in those muscles. The next part is getting them to fire properly so that proper posture can be maintained

Chest Pain with deep breathing, Rib Fracture

Muscles called intercostals fill the space between each pair of ribs. When these muscles become shortened they will prevent normal rib movement during breathing and spinal movement. ART has been shown to be so effective at decreasing adhesions in the intercostals that almost all of the pain associated with a rib fracture can be removed by proper treatment of these structures.


Chances are that at some point in your life you have had a headache. It is true that many headaches can be treated and prevented by proper diet. In these cases and specifically in the cases of occipital and tension headaches, the utilization of ART as treatment for removal of soft tissue origins is irreplaceable. By removing soft tissue adhesions in addition to specific dietary and exercise recommendations the majority of headaches can be prevented

Whiplash or Headache

If you have ever been in a car accident it is likely that you experienced some degree of whiplash, causing strains to muscle and sprains to ligaments. When this happens the body creates scar tissue as a way of repairing the tissue to quickly stabilize the affected area. This scar tissue causes muscles to shorten, which leads to a decrease in strength and range of motion. The most effective way of returning range of motion and restoring normal length to the affected tissue is by the application of ART. Through specific protocols scar tissue is removed and the chance of nerves becoming entrapped is removed.

What is Active Release Technique®?

Active Release Technique®, or ART®, is a hands-on soft tissue treatment used to correct problems from various kinds of soft tissue injuries. ART restores the normal function of your muscles and related structures, allowing full and free ranges of motion and restoring biomechanics. ART breaks down scar tissue that builds up within muscles and between muscles, and it helps to restore your nervous system’s control of the muscles.

This state-of-the-art treatment system works on problems in the back, neck, arms, legs, hands, and feet. Certified Active Release Chiropractic Providers apply their advanced knowledge of anatomy, muscular mechanics, peripheral neurology, and motor patterns to achieve excellent results, even in cases where all else seems to have failed.


The History of ART® Soft Tissue Treatment

ART® has been developed, refined, and patented by P. Michael Leahy, a Colorado Springs chiropractor widely regarded as the top soft tissue expert in the country, if not the world.

Dr. Leahy noticed that his patients’ symptoms seemed to be related to changes in their soft tissue that could be felt by hand. By observing how muscles, fascia, tendons, ligaments and nerves responded to different types of work, Dr. Leahy was able to consistently resolve over 90% of his patients’ problems. He now teaches and certifies health care providers all over the world to use ART®.


How Do Soft-Tissue Injuries Occur?

Over-used muscles (and other soft tissues) change in three important ways:
  • acute injuries (pulls, tears, collisions, etc)
  • accumulation of small tears (micro-trauma)
  • not getting enough oxygen (hypoxia)

Each of these factors can cause your body to produce tough, dense scar tissue in the affected area. This scar tissue binds up and ties down tissues that need to move freely. As scar tissue builds up, muscles become shorter and weaker. This causes reduced range of motion, loss of strength, and pain. If a peripheral nerve is trapped you may also feel tingling, numbness, and weakness.


How Does This Affect Normal Function?

As scar tissue builds up within your muscles and between your muscles, they can lengthen and shorten normally. Take a moment and flex your bicep muscle. It gets shorter. Now relax it. It gets longer. When scar tissue starts to clog your muscles, it prevents this normal action of muscle. The result is weakness, tightness, stiffness, and pain, as well as altered biomechanics. ART® breaks up this scar tissue so your muscles can move freely again.

In addition, soft tissue injuries have another, more subtle effect. They interfere with your brains ability to control your muscles via the nervous system. Once your muscles start to get tight, your body will think that tightness is normal. It will resist your attempts to stretch the muscle. This is why stretching rarely corrects a problem. ART® helps reset the normal tone of your muscles by correcting the nervous system’s feedback to the brain.


Who Can Benefit From Active Release Technique®?

ART® can help people from all walks of life. From pro athletes to weekend warriors to stay at home parents to entire work forces. It doesn’t matter who you are or what you do, if your injury is related to soft tissue, chances are that ART® will help you.