CHARLOTTE – I’ve been reading a lot lately about CARS. CARS stands for Controlled Articular Rotations. It’s used to take your joint through it’s natural rotation. For instance, shoulder related CARs is where you take your arm and move your shoulder joint through all it’s natural ranges of motion. These types of movements are designed to move your joints through their natural progression, which in turn encourages lubrication and blood flow (which in turn keeps them healthy). If you don’t move your joints, you’ll lose the ability to move.
Most health professionals will tell you that one key to living a long, healthy life is to keep moving and encourage joint mobility. Therefore, keeping your joints and muscles in the best shape possible can improve your daily experience. Where does the CARs method fall into massage? Your massage therapist can gently move your joints in a passive way through their range of motion. You massage therapist can also show you what the normal range of motion for your joint should be and can help guide you through stretches or movement that can help encourage your mobility.
The great thing about CARs is you do not move through any pain. If you feel a pinch or pain, the idea is not to continue the movement but to back off and go around the pain. If you feel pain, bring it to your massage therapists attention so they can adjust their routine. A therapist can also massage areas around the joint to encourage mobility.
-Lisa Lane (LMBT #13098) is owner of Massage Sanctuary in Mint Hill. Go to www.ncmassagesanctuary.massagetherapy.com to make an appointment.