Muscle Energy Techniques

MET is the treatment procedure that involves the voluntary contraction of a patient’s muscle in a precisely controlled direction at varying levels of intensity, against a distinctly executed counter force applied by the therapist. In short it uses the clients muscle energy to produce a change in muscle tension.

It Is a technique that is used very effectively to treat deep, intrinsic muscles of the vertebrae, enabling the therapist to decrease muscle tension and increase segmental range of motion.

Reasons for using MET

  • To lengthen a shortened or contracted muscle
  • To strengthen a physiologically weakened muscle
  • To lengthen shortened fascia
  • To reduce localised oedema or passive congestion
  • To mobilise an articulation with restricted mobility
  • To treat trigger points.

Types

  1. Post-isometric relaxation – restores ideal range of motion to a muscle which is over facilitated and therefore shortened. By isometrically contracting a muscle against a resistance then relaxing the muscle, there is brief period of lowered neural input to that muscle. This allows the therapist to stretch that muscle into a range that previously was no available.
  2. Reciprocal Inhibition – useful when PIR above is too painful. Same theory as before however by contracting the muscle against resistance the nervous system inhibits (switches off) the muscle which performs the opposite function allowing it to stretch the muscle into a range that was not previously was not available.
  3. Isotonic MET – facilitates weakened muscles – using either concentric or eccentric contractions.

Areas that benefit from MET

  • Ilium
  • Iliac crest
  • Thoracic curves and rotations
  • Cervical joints
  • Lumbar spine
  • Pelvic tilts
  • Ribs
  • Inhalation restriction

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