Myoskeletal Alignment Therapy (MAT) is a Client-Centered, Results-Based Therapy which combines orthopedic massage and movement assessment to find the root of the problem, and get you moving toward your full, pain-free life.
Myoskeletal Alignment Therapy Assessment, Planning and Treatment
“New Client” MAT appointments begin the process. Previous clients who haven’t been seen by my office for 6 months or more should also make this type of appointment.
These first appointments include:
- History Review – We collect all available information regarding your health history to begin your assessment.
- Posture Imaging – We take images of your spine and stance.
- Posture / Pain assessment of movement patterns – We evaluate your current health condition and determine a plan for treatment.
- Myoskeletal Alignment Therapy – Using the massage table; 90-minute, therapeutic, hands-on treatment.
What MAT Addresses: Pain Therapy, Posture Programs and More
Myoskeletal Alignment Therapy is highly recommended for the person with concerns of:
- Chronic Pain – Your pain cycle can contribute to increased posture and alignment issues, which then, also creates more pain. Addressing your original pain can end this cycle.
- Increased Sports Performance – Restoring freedom of movement, increasing the ability to train, reducing pain that inhibits maximum effort, and preventing future injury are common results of MAT.
- Scoliosis – MAT combines gentle muscle and bone manipulation to correct and minimize damage to your joints as you age.
- Postural Issues – Many aspects of this therapy can minimize or correct posture problems.
- Improve Balance – Corrected alignment increases physical balance, which contributes to other aspects of performance and wellness.
- Migraines – Improving your body’s alignment can have impact in lessening effects and even the onset of migraines.
- Tingling, Numbness – Creating a healthy central nervous system positively affects nerve function, which often relieves such symptoms.
- Range of Motion (ROM) – Often, issues with ROM can be relieved with corrected myoskeletal alignment.
- Post- Surgery – Helps counteract symptoms and challenges after orthopedic and other surgeries.
- Post Physical Therapy – Improving myoskeletal alignment can help avoid negative side-effects from some orthopedic therapy.
- Hyper-flexibility – Headaches, high blood pressure, POTS, hyperhidrosis, and slow-healing wounds are some side-effects of hyper-flexibility which might be addressed with MAT.
- Carpal Tunnel / Tendonitis / Tendinosis / Arthritis – The bones, tendons and ligaments of your hands, arms, shoulders and other joints need to work well together, and it can be confusing which condition you are suffering from. MAT can address each of these painful conditions.
Myoskeletal Alignment Therapy for Athletes
Myoskeletal Alignment Therapy is the perfect pain, posture & performance addition for any athlete or weekend warrior.
At Shift Fitness & Massage we offer client centered advanced therapies to empower everyone to be pain free, move better, stand taller through Alignment, Posture rehabilitation & Posture Re-education. No pills, needles or surgery.
Tammy Shaw-Sykes is the only Master of Myoskeletal Alignment Therapy in Minnesota and one of 30 MMTs as of 2018. Read more about Tammy’s expertise.
Frequently Asked Questions regarding Myoskeletal Alignment Therapy
What can I expect with my first appointment?
The first part of the appointment is discussion. We review the client history information you filled out and ask questions. Usually about 15 minutes.
Please wear athletic wear or tighter clothing as photos and a video of walking are taken for review.
Full body massage is done in most cases.
Another set of photos are taken.
Review of findings.
Some walking or moving to incorporate muscle retraining for quicker brain re-education.
Why do you do a full body massage instead of other assessments I have done at another place?
Using my experience as a Corrective Exercise Specialist (NASM) and Functional Movement Specialist I have found that with these techniques combined with MAT which can stretch used muscles & strengthen weaker muscles. This can advance a client by 4-6 weeks from traditional corrective exercise or personal training.
Is Myoskeletal Alignment Therapy (MAT) like Rolfing?
Erik Dalton was a student and teacher of Ida Rolf’s training and enhanced those teaching to incorporate techniques combining massage, Rolfing, anatomy, comples impact of the nervous system on muscles and fascia and Osteopathy.
Rolfing has been know as a Ten Session Protocol which involved first session of head, neck and moving downward throughout the sessions.
MAT is unlike that.
At SHIFT I use Phases.
Phase I – 1 time a week with the focus out of pain and proper movement patterns. These session can be 4-8 times depending on client some exercises using body weight will be given moving out of pain or disfunction.
Phase II Option 1 This can be shorter appointments 2 times a week as we are in the strengthening and stretching mode. Some table work may be done.
Option 2 1 longer appointment every other week as they are doing the exercises regularly on their own so table work incorporated with exercises are done.
Phase III Maintenance. This is a 90 minute 1 time a month or every other month to make sure that the proper movement patterns stay in balance and keeping out you out of pain.
What are you not more specific on how many times to come in?
Everyone is unique and different. Things to consider. For example: client with injury from 15 years before that wants to improve range of motion on shoulders. Her results and length of time may be different from the person that has a frozen shoulder for 3 months.
I like to run and now it hurts to walk. How can this help?
I was trained in massage & personal training by 2 instructors that were Ironman participants and Ironman coaches and went on to train trainers to coach Ironman athletes. In this case MAT is the first place to start to make sure muscles are moving and firing in proper order. Running on the treadmill can then indicate a specific area to go back to focus on to get you back to doing the things you love as quickly as possible.
I have chronic migraines would MAT help me?
Yes, the focus is on you. Assessments are done visually and on the massage table. Testing to see what area it encompasses. Disc facets not opening, TMJ misalignment, nerve impingement can all be worked on with these gentle techniques.
Why have I not heard about MAT before?
Myosketelal Alignment Therapy (MAT) has been around since 1997. Erik Dalton the founder lives in Oklahoma and only teaches 2 times a year. With the availability of DVD & Web Training more therapists are investing their time & money on these advanced training techniques. I am sure that you will be hearing more about it.
Where you trained only online in MAT?
To be a Master of Myoskeletal Alignment Therapist you have to attend at least 2 workshops and 1 must be with Erik Dalton. I have done 2 OKC workshops and 1 with Paul Kelly, Sr MMT in San Diego and will be attending a 1 week Intensive MAT Training in Costa Rica in 2019 Over 225 hours of training has been reached for my MMT Certification.
Why did you decide to do MAT work?
I myself had pain, tingling and it was a massage therapist not medications that helped the most. I appreciate that MAT incorporates all of the body. I am able to incorporate the best of massage, personal training and yoga into each session.
Is it only massage therapists that do MAT?
No, Athletic trainer, personal trainers, physical therapist and chiropractors in addition to massage therapist are being trained in Myoskeletal Alignment Therapy.
About Tammy Shaw-Sykes, MMT
Master of Myoskeletal Alignment Therapy from Erik Dalton’s Freedom From Pain Institute. Renowned myoskeletal therapist Erik Dalton, PhD, has a broad therapeutic background in massage, Rolfing and manipulative osteopathy. Read more about Tammy’s approach.