Muscle Tension Relaxation:
How Long Does It Take?

How Long Will it Take to Get Better?

Or, how long does it take to reduce, relief or release C.E.M.&.N.T. ( Chronic, Excess Muscle & Nerve Tension & Stress ) This is totally dependent upon your specific conditions and past history, as well as constitution. Unfortunately, it is very near impossible to predetermine.

For people with long term, chronic, complex conditions, your first session could run from 3 to 4 hours, depending upon the complexity of your condition. Some people have had so many traumas and injuries, just the history intake can take an hour or two!

The next several sessions will usually be kept to three hours. Yet if it is determined your condition is very “localized” and not very urgent, 90-minutes sessions will work.

“Localized” means the “tight muscles” are in the same location as the pain, dysfunction, or other symptoms. … Yet many Clients have conditions where the CAUSE of their pain or dysfunction is distant from where they FEEL it. Sometimes VERY distant. … It can often take a LOT of time to track these relationships down.

Generally, it takes three to six sessions to get most people “over the hump” of their problems. This is in part determined by how frequently they come in for sessions. The closer they are together, the better. (See Pattern Interrupts.)  Subsequently, an additional three to six sessions to produce the majority of the results is usually sufficient. (This is not a prediction for substantially ill people.)

NOTE: Why 3 Hours?
There is nothing “magical” about the 3-hour time frame.

Personally, in an ideal world, I would prefer that a person just come in and we start and we just see what we need to do, and not worry about “the clock.” But most people cannot do that. They need to have some sort of time frame they can schedule around. And people like to have some degree of certainty as to what they are signing up for.

It took a few years, but I had to come up with a number that satisfied a potential Client’s need for some degree of clarity. It needed to be long enough to work with the most “tough cases,” but not an all day affair.

After years of experimentation, I came up with 3-hour sessions as the approximate amount of time most people respond well enough in to feel like they are making progress.

Although shorter sessions ARE available, we focus here on 3-hour sessions because that is what most of our Clients need, want, and receive. Most of them quickly realize, given their situation, that that amount of time is reasonable.

We usually get Clients that have “been everywhere” and “done everything,” receiving many types of therapy and have not gotten the results they want. This means they probably have more to handle than the average individual, because MANY people ARE helped with shorter sessions of much less complex types of therapy.

I do not represent DSL Edgework as a replacement for all other therapies. Modalities such as NMT, MFR, Deep Tissue, Shiatsu, and so on are VERY successful for MANY problems of many people.

However, if the various therapies never seem to work, or the problem keeps coming back, something is missing. That is what structural bodywork is good at tracking down and resolving.

Will you need or want 3-hour sessions? This question has a number of issues involved, and you will need to discuss this with your DSL Practitioner to find out what will work best for you.

Tougher Cases
Some individuals have required two to three hours just to get the whole story of how they got the way they are, which is necessary if they are to understand the nature of their condition and just what is required to handle it. Remember, the “L” in DSL stands for Learning.

And very often, it takes a LONG time before a particular piece of information comes out that is a Game Changer. For instance, the Client remembers an accident they had MANY years ago but had forgotten about. Such as a broken bone. Or maybe no broken bones, but significant impacts to their body such as a car or ski accident.

People seldom realize how events of their past can have such a profound affect on their present condition, even decades later. If all one’s past is not put into a proper context, his or her condition could remain an unsolvable “medical mystery.”

It is amazing how some physicians, even so-called “wholistic” ones, are able to write off very significant though apparently remote events as irrelevant. Or never find out about them at all!!!  The process of remembering and understanding takes time.

How Far Can We Go?
On the other hand, there are individuals who have come in and achieved all of their perceived needs in one or two sessions. This is probably because their Conditioning Process was very minimally facilitated into their BodyMind, into their psycho-neuro-musculo-fascial system, and required very little external input to change it.

Of course, there are also people who are deeply interested in and committed to their long-term BodyMind development, and there is really no end to what one could do in the way of fine-tuning and deepening Awareness and PsychoMuscular Response-Ability.

Some of our Clients have had numerous sessions because they believe it helps them in their daily life on an on-going basis, just as eating well every day works better than eating well for a month once a year, or one day a week. You are constantly being exposed to influences that can accelerate the negative impacts of the Conditioning Process, and some people more so than others.

There are those individuals whom nothing seems to bother, even though it might seem traumatic to anyone else. They seem to be the exception now-a-days,  as more and more of us are less able to adapt to and handle the rapidly multiplying stressors and toxicities of life.

Some people use DSL Edgework for on-going maintenance on a regular basis.

Too Much At One Time?
We see little truth to the allegations that Human Beings cannot tolerate more than 45 to 60 minutes per day or week of deep muscular and fascial therapy.

Of course, if a Therapist is working way too deep, way beyond the Client’s Edge, then of course the Client, and possibly the Therapist, will burn out in a very short time. However, if one is working within the Client’s range of relaxation, not gouging the tissue, not triggering negative reactions, always keeping the person in the relaxed phase and going deeper into relaxation as the session progresses, then it is unlikely, and very rare, that it will be “too much” for the Client to tolerate.

In fact, we have had Clients on the table for 4 to 8 HOURS of DSL per day for 5 to 10 consecutive days at a time. They are almost always astounded by how deeply relaxing the work is, and how fast the time passes. This includes Clients who have had no previous BodyWork, as well as those who have had great amounts of BodyWork.

Some of thee people had not been able to lie flat for more than a few minutes at a time. Yet we had them there for HOURS with NO problem!

Many therapists inadvertently keep their Clients in the Fight or Flight mechanisms of the sympathetic nerve functions by working too deep and/or too intrusively. We find that optimum results are achieved by keeping the client out of the Fight or Flight systems and in the Parasympathetic nerve functions which take one to much deeper levels of relaxation and healing.

If this requires barely touching the surface of the skin for several hours, it is okay, and sometimes necessary.

Some of the most sensitive nerves in the body are in the surface of the skin anyway, and much can be done at this level.

NOTE: There are, of course, exceptions to most rules. A very FEW Clients, not being able to move into relaxed nerve activity at all, have been able to go only one or two hours in the first few sessions. Finding the key for them may take longer, but there are very few who are unable to stay on the table for extended periods, and enjoy it. Or at least appreciate the results

More On How Long?
Although The DSL Method has an excellent track-record of solving many long-standing and severe problems very rapidly, and sometimes immediately, we do not perform miracles, at least not in the “mystical” sense of the word. Most of our Clients are among the five to ten percent or so of their Clients other therapists and physicians have given up on, so they usually have substantial problems to deal with.

Out of that percentage of “tough clients”, we have about a 80% or greater success rate. (This has been especially true since Linda Calandro brought her extensive clinical NMT experience to The DSL Method, insuring David to go deeper in to the deep medical sciences underlying Massage & Bodywork therapies.)

A person who has merely been sitting in a poorly designed chair for twenty years will not usually be as hard to work with as someone who has also done thousands of sit-ups at the  “health” club. Nor will either of these be as difficult as someone who has also been in a severe car accident or had major abdominal surgery. … Or someone who was a boxer for football player.

Most people DO feel positive results within the first session, or at least the first three. However, we have done as many as thirty or more 3-hour sessions on certain individuals who are still working toward “normal.” Unfortunately, some individuals are so damaged they will never fully return to “normal.” Others will have to do corrective and preventive stretching and exercise for the rest of their lives to stay out of pain and severe dysfunction.

And, we have a very small number of people whom we were not able to help sufficiently to satisfy us.

Finally, there are those few in such “bad” jobs, relationships or other circumstances that, until they change those circumstances, they will have little, if any, success in altering or changing their stress levels or their physical reactions to them, regardless of their choice of therapy or stress management techniques.

Then there is the whole Emotional Aspect of pain …

You can Read or Listen about that HERE.

Thank You Very Much for Reading about DSL’s
approach to Muscle Tension Relaxation …

David Scott Lynn (DSL*)
* DSL: Your Hi-Touch Up-Link to the Inner-Net*
* Inner-Net: Your Psycho-Neuro-Musculo-Fascial System