Therapeutic Massage : General Articulatory Technique
General Articulatory Technique (GAT) was originally named “General Osteopathic Technique” by Simon Fielding, a visiting osteopath from the UK, who taught this therapy approx. 20 years ago at South Pacific College of Natural Therapies in Ellerslie, Auckland. This is the College where I studied for my Bachelor of Health Science Degree in Complementary Medicine which incorporates GAT and other forms of Therapeutic Massage, as well as Herbal Medicine and Naturopathy.
What is GAT?
GAT is a system of moving the joints of the body, the client being absolutely passive. It is used to:
- Improve the range of motion and function of restricted joints.
- Improve functional postural deviations and misalignments.
- It may improve performance in athletes and aids recovery.
- It helps to release muscle tension and improve muscular skeletal conditions or diseases.
It is a technique that works well with, and complements other body therapies such as Muscle Energy Technique (which is an active osteopathic technique, where the client actively pushes against the therapist), Lymphatic Drainage, relaxation massage or sports massage and cross-fibre techniques, to give optimal results.
GAT is used to gently stretch restricted muscles, ligaments and joint capsules. The movements are slow and deliberate, enabling the therapist to monitor response and adjust accordingly. Common conditions which may be helped with this form of bodywork include ‘frozen shoulder’ and pelvic dysfunction which contribute to ‘sway back’ and lateral tilt, where one hip is higher than the other. Regular sessions may help to gently mobilize, relax and stretch the muscles around the spine, neck, shoulder and pelvic areas, providing greater freedom of movement, reducing pain caused by muscle tension and joint restriction and improving posture.
As with all massage therapies and bodywork, GAT should not be performed if the client has suffered recent injury resulting in fracture of bones, joint dislocation, open wounds, any acute infections or inflammation, severe osteoporosis or metastatic disease.
Before any treatment is undertaken, your therapist will record essential information to make sure there are no medical contra-indications, make a note of presenting symptoms and determine the client’s expectations and requirements. Additionally a postural analysis may be undertaken to look at body alignment and if indicated, perform ‘range of motion’ tests to ascertain the most beneficial treatment plan for each individual.
You may be provided with simple exercises or advice to support your treatment and it is important to record client feedback – both improvements and any problem areas – in order to reach the best outcome.
For information or to make an appointment for a consultation about GAT, other forms of massage, Naturopathy or Herbal Medicine, please feel free to give me a call J
09-235 7098 or 021 133 8981
Clinic hours: (Appointments outside these hours available by arrangement)
Tues 1 – 5 pm Wed 10 – 7pm Thurs 1 – 6pm Fri 10 – 6pm