Why NO Pain Means MORE Gain

Therein lies part of the secret to the NO Pain, MORE Gain philosophy of DSL Edgework. The therapy should NOT itself be irritating AT ALL. It should be as fully relaxing experience as possible for you. You should like or be totally neutral about what you’re feeling.

You, the Client, are ALWAYS in charge of how much pressure or sensation you’re feeling. And it’s NOT about what you can tolerate. If you are tolerating the sensation, it is too deep!

You should LIKE or be totally NEUTRAL about what you are feeling. …

You should be INVITING the sensations, NOT Fighting the sensations.

~ David Scott Lynn (DSL)

With a simple communication system you develop with your DSL Therapist, if you are feeling too much discomfort or ANY kind of pain, they will ALWAYS back off to the degree you want and ask them to.

They will NEVER suggest that you should just “breath through the pain” or somehow “just get though it.” Such instructions or suggestions are never necessary, despite what so many therapists and methods claim.

(Intense sensations are fine, as long as they are not really pain. You’ll learn how to feel the difference.)

FULL DISCLOSURE: If a Client walks in the door with a level of pain, THAT is, initially, the baseline of sensation. So the therapist’s job is, as best as possible, to NOT increase that pain from that baseline. Then, if all goes well, the baseline begins to change.

Frankly, this is in many cases a lot easier said than done. There are often incidents when the therapist applies even very light pressure somewhere and it hurts a LOT. This is NOT intentional.

But YOU need to let them know in as Real Time as possible what you’re feeling, especially if it gets too deep. You do not want to push your “pain limits” too much at all, if at all. At least not when you’re just getting familiar with the DSL Edgework process.

This involves sort of a “negotiation” process where you and your therapist come to understand that this rule, while quite effective in many ways, is not perfect. So you learn to work together to find optimum levels of sensation.

The Primary Factor is you should be able to RELAX into the sensation as best as possible.

While many people experience improvements, or even compete relief with painful bodywork, some people can NOT tolerate, and pain, or too much intensity of sensation, re-triggers their pain patterns.

It Bears Repeating …

You Want To INVITE the Sensation,
NOT Fight the Sensation

A different way of stating the No Pain Means More Gain approach is this …

It’s Easier to Open the Door BEFORE You Walk Through it!
And You Can’t Peel an Onion From the Inside Out!

~ David Scott Lynn (DSL)

If you find yourself “fighting” the sensation, your job is to say “less,” or “back off,” or whatever is easy for you to speak to get your message across.

And just because you tell them once does not mean you don’t have to communicate. Your soft tissues will, in most cases, be changing significantly, and so will your sensation levels.

As the tissue relaxes and softens, your therapist will sink into the relaxing tissue. But SOMETIMES, the pain sensations “catch up” to what’s happening, As the tissue changes, your sensations will most likely change.

So YES, to achieve Optimum Tension & Stress Reduction with Muscle Pain Relief, you are responsible to communicate your needs. But your therapist will, to the best of their ability, always be watching & listening to see if you’re slipping into discomfort or pain, which often happens without you realizing it. So they might ask you, sometimes on a frequent basis.

Then they’ll adjust pressure or technique as necessary. But it is not always smooth going or easy to tell when a Client is in pain, and often, the Client doesn’t even realize it either. It sometimes “sneaks up” on you. So ideally, it’s a two-way communication street.

We VERY often have to remind the Client of the No Pain Means More Gain principle. Frankly, many of them do not BELIEVE it, as they have so often heard the No Pain, NO Gain slogan. It’s almost a Culturally Conditioned idea.

Surprisingly, some clients are (at first) incapable of feeling for themselves where they are on the sensation / pain scale. This can be a result of Neuro-Musculo-Fascial DE-Sensitization which occurs in the brainstem. There are small nerves designed to block sensations that are redundant or low-grade.

(For the Physiology Geeks out there, those nerve endings are called Descending Sensory Pathways. They are found in the Reticualr Activating System.)

More commonly known are the Ascending Sensory Pathways, bringing information from the periphery of your body in and up the Central Nerve System and eventually to the Brain. The descending pathways act as a “brake” or “filter” on the incoming sensations.

This de-sensitization prevents the conscious part of your brain (cerebral cortex) from getting overwhelmed with too much input and sensation. It is a necessary “feature” of the brain that has its upside, and its downside.

Straw that broke the camel's back moment when old stress, tension and pain is re-triggered. - Why No Pain Means More Gain

That’s A LOT of Straw!

Sometimes, the redundant, low-level sensations build up gradually in the background, without you noticing it. Then, one day, you have a Straw That Broke the Camel’s Back Moment. Then, a lot of old stress, tension, & pain patterns lurking in the background suddenly cross a threshold, and you can suddenly or gradually experience varying degrees of weird or painful sensations.

These sensations often feel as if they are “new,” as if they came out of nowhere. But all too often, it is the body going through what is called a “retracing” process.

In such cases, it is up to the DSL Edgework Therapist to figure out ways to make such determinations until the Client has restored their sensitivities to the point they can perceive more precisely, and quickly, what is really going on with them. Some people take a LONG time, over many sessions, to regain this mind-body connection.

For those who “like it deep” and “can take a lot of pressure,” you’ll find that works for some things (like football or boxing), but NOT HERE. Not in therapy where your nervous system and muscles are hypersensitive to the slightest increases of pressure, which are often unconsciously perceived as an intrusion and then defended against by increasing muscle tension, often without you noticing it AT ALL!

You will get FAR MORE RELAXATION & RESULTS if you respect and respond to these often VERY subtle and “quiet” signals from your body. The very subtle reflex pathways of the nervous system are often SO subtle, you cannot feel them when they activate, nor if they persist.

In fact, much of the results from The DSL Method come directly from the RE-sensitizing of those often subtle and widely varied messages of your nervous system, brain and mind.

RE-Sensitized ==>> Response-Able Self-Correction

Why bother to do all that? Why pay that much attention to what might appear on the surface to be an “automatic process”? …

Because the experiences and skills you learn in therapy transfer over into your daily life such as working out or doing your job, or even love-making.

This way, your bodymind becomes far more conscious of what’s really going on within you. And, gradually at first, you literally STOP tolerating many of the things you do that are not all that good for you, if at all.

In many cases and circumstances, your bodymind Auto-Magically begins moving away from negative movements, actions, and postures — the not-so-beneficial actions & activities — you find yourself doing on a daily basis. Your RE-sensitized and increasingly Response-Able bodymind becomes Increasingly Self-Correcting in a positive way, often before you realize you’re doing so.

(Counterintuitively, much of “self-awareness” operates well before, or “below and beyond” the conscious mind feeling or realizing what’s going on.)

You also learn to find those many brief moments throughout the day where you can instantly relax one or more muscle groups for brief moments, so as to prevent long-term accumulation of too much C.E.M.&.N.T.

QUESTION: When does the heart muscle relax? …
ANSWER: In between beats.

You, therefore, learn to relax your muscles for very short moments at a time in between the many movements you do throughout your day-to-day activities. Done correctly, THIS MIGHT even be more valuable, in the long run, than doing a half hour or hour stretching practice every day, as important as I think THAT is.

The two approaches actually work together, achieving somewhat different yet complimentary results.

Hopefully that gives you a good idea of how the No Pain, MORE Gain approach works, and why.

Thank You for Reading about the NO Pain Means
MORE Gain aspects of DSL Edgework …

Take Care,
David Scott Lynn (DSL*)
* DSL: Your High Touch Uplink to the Inner-Net*
* Inner-Net: Your Psycho-Neuro-Musculo-Fascial Network