What is “Worse Before Better”?
by Ashley Black
What is “worse before better”?
If you’re reading this article, it’s safe to assume that you know what fascia is and how it affects our everyday lives and functions. Activities, habits, and lifestyle choices have a huge impact on our fascial health — being conscious of these things, as well as taking care of our fascia determines our fascial health. If this is mumble-jumble to you and you don’t know what I’m talking about, stop here, read this explanation of fascia, then read this article to understand cellulite, learn about the types of cellulite, and then come right on back!
When your fascia is tight and unhealthy, it can form what I like to call “fascia chunks”, or pockets of fat, skin, and muscle. This is unhealthy fascia that has tightened, adhered, and trapped the tissues into a “chunk”. Treating and loosening the tight fascia will cause this chunk to begin to release and smooth out. Imagine breaking up a huge block of ice: big chunk, smaller chunks, tiny chunks.
Does “worse before better” happen to everyone?
Your personal journey to fascial restoration will depend greatly on your lifestyle and health history. One way to determine where you are on the “fascial health scale” is to
do the “5 P’s test”. If your fascia is very bound, it will be tight and difficult to pinch, among other determining factors laid out in the test mentioned above. Another good chart to help you determine the state of your fascia is to refer to the “7 Phases of Fascia Freakout” chart. Understanding the factors that caused you to get to where you are will not only help you understand how you got this way, but will also help you to take the steps you need to restore your fascia.
With that being said, while everyone will experience their own journey, there are ways to approach the restoration process that will ensure the best possible experiences and outcomes.
How to avoid “worse before better”
Fascia runs in layers, and it’s important that we restore each layer one at a time to avoid beginning the “restoration process” in too many layers at once. As mentioned above, the restoration of these chunks will cause them to “break up”, which can result in an uneven texture that may show through on the outward appearance of your skin, as further discussed in this blog and the video below.
If you restore one layer at a time and progressively work through those chunks, they will smooth out, and you can move on to restoring the next layer. However, if you were to blast too hard, too soon, you would begin to break up the chunks in deeper layers as well as the surface layers. It’s simply easier to restore one layer at a time rather than…three at the same time!!
Starting out FasciaBlasting light and brisk at the surface level will help restore the initial, more surface layers of fascia first. Little by little, you can progress to adding slightly more pressure when your tissue is ready for deeper treatment in order to reach and restore the fascia in the deeper layers. It’s important to remember that years of fascial recoil will not be undone overnight and that this is a process. Slowly but surely wins this race!
What to do if you are experiencing worse before better
Here is an excerpt from a user who has been through the restoration process and has come out on the other side. Her story has been very helpful to other users going through this phase, so with her permission, we’re going to add it here:
“You’ll want to go through this process slowly by blasting light and fast to break through ONE fascia layer at a time. 1 big chunk, smaller chunks, pebble size chunks, rice crispy size chunks, sandy and “gravely”, then smooth! …. If you blast hard and deep or dig in with the nugget too soon you may create a chunky look by penetrating too many layers at once. If this happens, focus on lightly blasting the surface, fascia pulling, flushing and muscle activation to smooth back out. I am also a big fan of dry brushing, especially if you are sore from Blasting. It increases blood flow and stimulates your lymphatic system to carry out toxins and extra water retention.”
Here are some tips and pointers for anyone going through this stage of the restorative process:
Light FasciaBlasting sessions with the FaceBlaster™ are your friend during this phase! Focus on full body sessions, then take a day or 2 to rest and recover between sessions (i.e. 1 day blast, 2 days rest; repeat). You can put extra focus on your “trouble areas” – meaning you’re not “digging in” or trying to “go deeper”; you’re lightly smoothing out the layers with the FaceBlaster while still concentrating on the areas where the fascial distortions are more apparent.
Activating and conditioning the muscles beneath the tissue you just opened and loosened will flush blood and nutrients to the tissues and build the muscle, creating a hard surface beneath the skin. We recommend doing these activation exercises at least 3-5 times per week.
This is a really important step for skin tightening, toning, and smoothing the skin, since blood carries nutrients and stimulates elastin and collagen production! Besides isolating and contracting the muscles, we also recommend you do low impact cardio 3-6 times per week (elliptical, stationary bike, swimming, etc).
Stretching the full fascia lines will not only help you to determine areas of fascial R.A.D. (restrictions, adhesions, and distortions), but it also helps your fascia to stay pliable and healthy. Consider stretching an extra boost to your FasciaBlasting and fascia care regimen!
While “big chunks into smaller chunks” is part of the restoration process, staying light and brisk and addressing the fascial distortions layer by layer, like an onion, will ensure that you restore those areas at your own pace instead of breaking through too many layers at once, causing more dents and dimples to appear.
Your #BlasterSisters, my staff, and I are here to help and support you every step of the way and give you personalized recommendations, tips, and reassurance. We got this, and you’re on your way to restored fascial health!