OPTM24 Advanced Soft-tissue Techniques

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Level: 6
Credits: 15

Directed Learning hours: 75
Workplace or Practical Learning hours: 10
Self Directed Learning hours: 65
Total Learning Hours: 150


This course aims to provide the students with the knowledge and skills required to effectively apply advanced soft-tissue techniques such as neuromuscular therapy and myofascial release in their massage practice.



  • None

Learning Outcomes

At the successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of fascial anatomy, physiology and theory
  2. Identify and analyse the condition of fascia
  3. Select and apply myofascial release techniques in a clinical massage setting
  4. Demonstrate knowledge neuromuscular technique theory.
  5. Identify and analyse trigger point-related dysfunction
  6. Select and apply neuromuscular techniques to selected muscles in a clinical massage setting.


  • Fascial anatomy, physiology & theory
  • Fascial assessment techniques
  • Fascial release techniques
  • Application of fascial release techniques
  • Treatment planning incorporating fascial release
  • Neuromuscular technique theory
  • Assessment and neuromuscular considerations
  • Application of neuromuscular techniques
  • Treatment planning incorporating neuromuscular techniques


The following strategies may be used: • Assignments • Theoretical examination • Journalling/diary • Demonstration of practical skills • Supervised clinical assessment • Practical testing • Case studies • Video/DVD or Voice Recording of Role Plays and/or work with clients

Attendance Requirements

Students are expected to attend 90% of practical classes. If in the opinion of the programme manager students have a valid reason for non-attendance, their total attendance may be permitted to drop to a minimum of 80%. Non-participation in these classes is treated as non-attendance. Students are required to attend all clinical- and work- placement activities except when the programme manager judges that there are extenuating circumstances.

Completion requirements

Students must achieve competency in all assessment tasks for completion of this course. Students attendance and participation must also comply with the attendance requirements of the course.

Student Reading List

Required Reading Resources:

  • Finando, D., & Finando, S. (2005). Trigger point therapy for myofascial pain – the practice of informed touch. Vermont: Healing Arts Press.
  • Myers, T. (2004). Anatomy trains – myofascial meridians for manual and movement therapists. London: Elsevier Limited.

Recommended Reading Resources:

  • Chaitow, L., & DeLany, J. (2000). Clinical application of neuromuscular techniques volume 1: upper body. Edinburgh: Elsevier.
  • Chaitow, L., & Fritz, S. (2006). A massage therapist’s guide to understanding, locating and treating myofascial trigger points. Edinburgh: Elsevier.
  • Travell, J., & Simons, D. (1999). Myofascial Pain and Dysfunction – The trigger point manual. Volume 1. Upper Half of Body (2nd ed.). Baltimore: Williams & Wilkins.
  • Travell, J., & Simons, D. (1993). Myofascial Pain and Dysfunction – The trigger point manual. The Lower Extremities. Philadephia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

The course coordinator may recommend additional reading resources.