Therapeutic Massage Newberg Oregon

Pennington Massage Clinic providing pain relief, healing and restoration for chronic pain, repetitive strain and restricted motion through massage therapy treatment.



Control Muscle Release Therapy

control-muscle-release-therapy-helpsMuscles form a massive web, connecting one location to the areas around it and moving out progressively to other regions at greater distances. What we notice is the tight muscle that restricts our movement or the location that is painful, grabbing our attention. The most frequent treatment is to massage the painful region. Various types of massage can be done on the painful location, some of these can lead to inflammation and soreness. Repeatedly the difficulty remains and the pain returns. This cycle can last for years. One way to change this is to find the fibers that are forcing the problem region to tighten. As this pattern was noticed, Control Muscle Release Therapy was developed.

Many of us work at computers or spend time sitting or working in a manner that tends to pull the head forward. The issue is that we seldom relax enough when the task is done. We need to allow all the muscles to release and let the head return to its home above the neck and upper back. If the head movement becomes restricted, the head frequently starts to be pulled forward. Muscles that are meant to control the head now are called upon to support the head. As the head is pulled forward, the neck vertebrae stack in such a way as to restrict movement of the head. The head-forward position is supported and or caused by muscles tightening in other areas.

When the head is pulled forward
it has many effects on the body:

    • The shoulders round forward.
    • Head rotation is reduced because vertebrae are moved progressively toward structural restrictions.
    • The nerves in the neck have muscles tighten over them, frequently causing pain.
    • Blood vessels for the head have side pressure placed on them.
    • The forearm bones rotate such that pressure is placed on the Medial Nerve at the carpal tunnel.
    • The spinal muscles tighten to support the head. This can compromise sports performance.
    • The occipital muscles (base of the skull/top of the neck) tighten to allow the head to be held upright, so that vision looks forward. The problem is that these muscles can get so tight that blood flow is restricted. This can cause a headache or even a migraine. It can also can cause restricted head movement
    • The low back tightens to help compensate for the back supporting the head.
    • The quads tighten to help counterbalance the low back.
    • The calves tighten to help support the quads and the low back.
    • Many more items can be added to this list, all are part of your body’s method
      of supporting the head being in front of the home position over the neck.

This same type of example can be given
for many other zones in the body:

  • The pelvis can start the cascade of support changes.
  • The feet can start the cascade.
  • Hand use can be the beginning of a long cascade of support changes.

Sports frequently involve repeated actions that teach the body to develop certain muscles. Sports also result in force applied to the body, such as tackle in football, a fall in basketball, a hit in hockey and the list goes on for many sports.

Jobs may teach the body to have an imbalance of muscles. Playing the violin is done on one side; as are many musical instruments. Many times a plumber assumes positions that are not easy on the muscles. This list can be extensive with each task having its own way that it teaches the body to compensate for abnormal functioning.

Everyone has fallen down at some time in their life, and the body remembers some of these falls by holding muscles tight (this is a defense to help the body heal). Difficulty with mobility occurs when muscles stay tight and scar tissue forms, holding the body in a fixed position.

Control Muscle Release Therapy requires an extensive understanding of the relationship between the functioning of a joint and the distant locations that can restrict the motion of the joint. Releasing the distant tensions is normally much gentler and frequently fairly easy. Based on the 20 years of developing this theory, the long term stability of this type of release is substantial. Some of the clients that I am still in contact with after 10 years (or longer) after this release therapy have kept the improvement!

Schedule an appointment to start feeling better today

Contact Pennington Massage to schedule an Appointment or call our office at 503-244-4427

Massage for Shin Splints + Leg Pain

Shin Splint Muscle Therapy + Leg Pain

  • Has anyone ever mentioned shin splints?
  • Have you felt or been told that you have a short leg?
  • Do you walk or run with pain?
  • Do you have knee, quad, hamstring or calf pain?
  • Do you walk on the inside or outside of your feet?
  • Is walking an effort?
  • Do you avoid walking?

If you said yes to one or more of these questions, then it is likely that part of what you have experienced is some form of leg muscle tightness. In many cases, it is possible to relax the muscles so that the legs can work with greater ease and less pain.

First of all, if you have knee problems, be sure to check with a doctor to find out if there is any torn cartilage or injured ligaments in the knee. That type of a problem may require surgery and later muscular therapy. Also, it is possible to tear muscles. That is another problem which may take medical intervention and massage therapy afterward. Accidents and surgeries of all types require the primary healing be completed before massage therapy, can be added which will aid in mobility and comfort.

If you develop sudden, unexplained leg pain, see your doctor. There are some long term medical conditions which can also result in leg pain. If you have questions consult your physician.

There are many different types of massage that can help you. It may be necessary to sample more than one type in order to find what works for you. Control Muscle Release Therapy is one type that has been beneficial to many people in reestablishing normal movement to the body.

Once the primary healing from an injury is finished, massage becomes an option. The massage therapist may begin by relaxing the muscles nearest the painful area or area of restriction. If the problem is not yet resolved, the massage therapist may choose to work on a more distant site which can influence the restricted area. For example: When the muscles in the back of the upper leg (hamstrings) are painful, it is possible that the problem may be in the pelvis. When the pelvis is tilted either forward or backward on one or both sides, it changes the tension of the muscles in the legs. Muscles and connective tissue in the ankle or foot, if they are tight, can also produce imbalance. Putting weight on either the outside or inside of the feet can translate tightness all the way to the low back. Often these imbalances are not new but can still be improved by Control Muscle Release Therapy or another type of massage.

There can be hope of change.

If the problem is due to

muscle tightness, then

NeuroMuscular Therapy and

Control Muscle Release Therapy

are likely to help.

Massage for Knee Problems

Knee problems can have many causes. When muscles and tendons are tight, any sudden impact against the legs can tear the cartilage which cushions and provides a gliding surface, or ligaments which hold bone to bone. And again, the orientation of the foot under the knee is important for proper alignment of the knee and the hip. The connective tissue that exists within the feet (fascia) is connected to the muscles, tendons, ligaments and joints of the knees, hips, and low back.

Differences in leg length can have different causes. Either the leg is structurally shorter or is functionally shorter due to tight muscles in the low back and pelvis. The psoas muscle is anchored into the side of the spine (vertebral bodies) from the region of the lower back (T10-12 and L1-3) extending into the inside of the pelvis connecting to the upper leg in the groin area (the lesser trochanter). It is used when we sit or bend, and in lifting the leg. If one psoas muscle is tight, that leg will appear shortened. That tension created by one shortened psoas will change the way a person stands, sits, or moves, which can create pain from the low back to the feet, due to the differential in tension from one side to the other.

Massage for Shin Splints

Shin splint muscle therapy can help shin splints, which are very sore muscles on the outer front side of the lower leg. Frequently, the leg will need to rest for a few days if the reason for the pain is that the muscle has pulled away from the bone. And the tension in the muscles needs to be released, from the ankle all the way to the upper leg. Control Muscle Release Therapy or another shin splint muscle therapy can be helpful in releasing the tension in leg muscles to enable the leg to heal more completely.

Schedule an appointment to start feeling better today

Contact Pennington Massage to schedule an Appointment or call our office at 503-244-4427


Everything in the body seeks balance or homeostasis. Injury or dysfunction challenge the body to return to balance.

Imagine the musculo-skeletal systems in terms of mechanical levers and weights that balance the body constantly, keeping us in homeostasis. When you bend or move one way, you shorten the angle on one side, you lengthen the angle on the other. (Fig. A) There are counter balances to keep you from going too far in that direction. Those counter balances come in the form of ligaments that connect bone to bone, tendons that connect muscle to bone, muscle, which allows for the change of angle of a bone, and fascia which connects everything.


Bend forward at the waist. The muscles in the front of your legs help to pull you forward, along with several abdominal muscles. However, the muscles on the back of your legs, your buttocks, and back, control the action of forward bending (Fig. B) and enable you to stand upright again.

Some muscles, when they are stressed, lengthen (Phasic Muscles). Others shorten in response to stress (Postural Muscles). Imagine that you have broken your foot. You have a walking cast to protect the bones from further injury. The weight of the boot or the cast plus the pain when you step on the broken foot, causes you to shift your weight to the opposite side. You are now bearing the majority of your weight on the unaffected side. Now the balance that existed in the connective tissues and muscular tensions between the right side and the left side of the body and between the front and the back side of the body have been changed, from the unaffected foot all the way to the head and back down the affected side. The previous balance before the injury helped to keep you in an upright position. Now you must change the tensions throughout the body to restore balance and keep you upright.

The body works like a series of cogs

There is interdependence and influence, such that when one thing changes, others must follow. Remember that I said some muscles in response to stress will lengthen and some in response to stress will shorten. This creates or increases imbalance throughout the body, forcing muscles to do jobs which they were not specifically designed to perform, in order to maintain homeostasis or balance.

So how do we escape the distortions of muscles and connective tissues that occur in response to imbalance? How do we restore balance?

The longer an imbalance persists, the greater the potential toward a permanent dysfunction. If the problem lasts for years, structural changes can take place in muscle and bone. Collagen (a component of connective tissue which gives flexibility and strength to the tissue) is laid down in direct proportion to the stress (or lack of stress) placed on it. (Wolf’s Law)

The key then, is to get the pain under control in order to not favor the affected side. Pain medications and muscle relaxants, prescribed by a physician, can help with this. Your massage therapist will help to relax the muscles that have become excessively tight (hypertonic) using Control Muscle Release Therapy, myofascial techniques or some other type of muscle therapy.

Time is of the essence.

It is important to get help at the beginning of any injury. When you have been injured, first see your physician, go to an emergency room or immediate care facility for treatment. After the first 48 to 72 hours have passed, see a massage therapist to help restore balance to muscles, tendons, ligaments and connective tissues.

Schedule an appointment to start feeling better today

Contact Pennington Massage to schedule an Appointment or call our office at 503-244-4427

Fibromyalgia Massage for Pain Relief

Doctors Frequently Recommend
Fibromyalgia Massage for Pain Relief

Fibromyalgia Massage — what does this mean? Fibro (meaning tissue) my (or myo, meaning muscle) algia (meaning pain)

Fibromyalgia can cause:

  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome
  • Sleep Disturbances
  • Memory Loss and Cognitive Disturbances, aka “fibro fog”
  • Headaches
  • Painful Menstrual Periods
  • Temperature sensitivity
  • Morning Stiffness
  • Fatigue
  • Numbness and Tingling of Extremities
  • and a variety of other symptoms

Fibromyalgia massage can provide relief of chronic pain caused by fibromyalgia, a common condition that has been characterized by chronic pain with tenderness throughout the body. It is classified as a rheumatic condition (one that impairs the joints and/or the soft tissue) and as a syndrome (a collection of signs and symptoms that occur together). Approximately 2 to 4 percent of the population (between 3 and 6 million Americans) suffer with this condition. Between 80 and 90 percent of the people diagnosed with fibromyalgia are middle-aged women.

Diagnosis is Usually Based on Two Criteria:

  • Widespread pain that lasts for three or more months.
  • Presence of trigger points (sensitive areas) in all four quadrants of the body.

Factors Related to Fibromyalgia Massage:

It has been suggested that sleep disturbances may contribute to the muscle pain. Some people may also have an auto-immune response. (They may have an immune response to self.) There are many who believe it may be related to central nervous system abnormalities resulting in faulty perceptions of pain. You may even encounter those who believe it is not a real problem at all.

The frustration and stress of not being heard when in pain, can be overwhelming. Find a healthcare provider who will listen to you. Depression may be a part of the syndrome. Talk to your healthcare provider. You may want to get into a support group or see a talk therapist. You are not alone.

Treatments may include:

Treatments for fibromyalgia may include medications for pain (analgesics), antidepressant medications which help to elevate certain chemicals in the brain that not only cause depression, but also fatigue and pain; Benzodiazepines that may assist the brain in sleep cycles and medications for irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Other methods of treatment include Occupational Therapy or Physical Therapy, Naturopathy and herbal medications, or dietary supplements, Acupuncture or Fibromyalgia Massage Therapy and Manual Lymph Drainage.

Studies suggest that…

Studies suggest that both Manual Lymph Drainage (MLD) and connective tissue massage (which include Neuromuscular Therapy and Myofascial Massage Techniques) may be effective in the relief of pain and aid in overall improvement of health status. With my advanced myofascial massage and connective tissue massage training, you can receive gentle caring and compassionate massage.

If you have been diagnosed with fibromyalgia, follow your Doctor’s instructions and try massage therapy as part of your pain management regimen. Contact Todd Pennington of Pennington Massage Clinic today – call 503-244-4427 to talk about your situation.

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Massage FAQs

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For massage we charge $90 an hour. Receiving bodywork at regular intervals is truly an investment in your health and well-being. Consider massage therapy sessions a necessary part of your personal healthcare plan.Read more...

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Feeling “better” is usually easy to achieve. Most people feel better after just one or two sessions. Read more...

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