IASTM… What is it?

IASTM… What is it?

There has been a lot of buzz about instrument assisted soft tissue mobilization, or IASTM, over the last few years!  It seems like every week there are new tools, new brands, and new trainings being developed, with some of the most familiar being Graston or HawkGrips.  But really this type of treatment has been around for a very long time.  IASTM is really a descendant of the art of Gua Sha.  Gua Sha is more than 2,000 years old and originated in Eastern Asia.

Now referred to as IASTM (instrument assisted soft tissue mobilization), it is a technique we use as physical therapists to treat a wide variety of conditions.  Modern day tools are typically stainless steel and clinicians employ techniques to treat most musculoskeletal conditions, including tendonitis, muscle spasms, and more.  These tools are used as a compliment to therapists' hands to feel for irregularities in soft tissue.

IASTM aims to address the root of the issue that is causing your pain by breaking up scar tissue, decreasing adhesions, and increasing blood flow to the target area. For example, plantar fasciitis is a condition in which individuals develop pain and inflammation in the soft tissue in the bottom of their foot. Numerous studies have shown that IASTM in combination with skilled physical therapy intervention is effective in the treatment of plantar fasciitis.

The main idea is to allow the muscle fibers and tendons to glide and operate normally.
From there, we move on to restore strength, range of motion, flexibility,
or any other issues that are holding you back!


All of our therapists are trained in IASTM techniques to help our patients to get back to what they love!  Contact us or stop in any of our outpatient clinics to learn more about how we can help you reach your goals!