Fascia is connective tissue. Long overlooked and underrated in the medical world, fascia is beginning to get the respect it deserves as the mighty governor of our wellbeing. Made of stretchy elastic collagen and ground substance, when hydraulically infused, it acts at once like structural glue, packing material, and an incredibly sensitive nervous system conductor in the body: cradling and nurturing every organ, muscle, nerve, blood vessel, artery, bone, and joint.
Describing its importance to our structure is like describing the importance of cables and bolts to a suspension bridge. Although the classification of tissues as fascial forms in the body constantly widens the more we study it, in basic terms, fascia can be divided into four main categories:
The interconnected structure of fascial tracks create the necessary tension needed for our bodies to spring in motion – our ability to adapt to the world around us with optimal energetic efficiency. Examples of structural fascia are ITbands, plantar fascia, thoracolumbar aponeourosis, all tendons, and ligaments… It is the incredibly strong filmy layer of tissue that envelops every muscle and bone. It comes in many shapes and sizes from tiny fiberous straps such as the ligaments in the knee, to large transparent sails that run between the large muscles in the legs and lower back.
Inter-structural fascia is the glue-like representation of fascia. It is a fractal web of highly adaptive, stretchy tissue that fills the spaces and binds groups of tissue together such as structural fascia, arteries, nerve tissue, dermis (skin), and viscera.
This connective tissue nurtures and supports. It creates space by lining the wall of our thorax and abdominal cavity, becoming a cocoon for our organs. Individual bags of visceral connective tissue also wrap around each individual organ acting as a conduit for precious nerves and blood supply.
A dense matrix of fascia, like darning on the seam of a sock is woven around the entire spinal column and in-between every vertebral joint. Again, the fascia has a dual purpose: both to support the spine and help to nurture and conduct the nerves and blood vessels that serve the central nervous system.