Visceral manipulation involves organ specific fascial mobilization that combines pressing, deep strokes and friction to strip away the adhesions. The goal is to restore the pliable, mobile state that helps your organs get the circulation, nutrients and suppleness they need to function properly.
The goal of visceral manipulation is to restore homeostasis, or stability, within the affected organ(s). This, in turn, will also positively affect the lymphatic, circulatory and neurological systems that surround the organ being mobilized. Palpating or using gentle touch, to locate tensions in the fascia (connective tissue) by a trained hand can reveal much about the organ’s function.
It can be the result of many factors such as surgeries, diet, posture and physical trauma to name a few. When the fascia and fluid around the organs becomes stiff, it limits their movement and pliability and hinders your organs’ function. A small dysfunction in one area can lead to problems elsewhere in the body due to the interconnectivity of the fascial system. Therefore, the origin of pain can actually be in a different place. The body is essentially forced to develop a compensatory pattern until the source of the dysfunction is located and treated.
The viscera, or the internal organs located within the chest and abdomen, have an inherent motion and this motion is connected to the physiological functioning of the organs. Most people don’t realize that our organs are indeed in constant motion as we move. For example, our kidneys slide up and down our Psoas muscle, a major hip and trunk flexor. When the viscera become restricted, the body is forced to compensate in various ways, leading to a functional problem. And if not remediated it could eventually lead to a structural problem. Getting back to the example of our kidneys, if its mobility is restricted, it can contribute to someone’s back pain.
Anecdotally, people report improvements in many areas, like: