Orthopedic Massage

Madge practices two types of orthopedic massage:

Marnitz Therapy is a neuromuscular technique that addresses the entire region related to the pain, be it cervical, thoracic, lumbar or a combination.

The Ben Benjamin orthopedic massage is based on British orthopedic surgeon James Cyriax’s work. It uses deep transverse friction to reduce and eliminate adhesive scar tissue. Most chronic pain in muscles, ligaments, and tendons is caused by poor healing and repeated tearing of adhesive scar tissue. A little bit of scar tissue is a normal part of healing, but often the body overshoots the mark and haphazardly lays down too much. Adhesions to neighboring bone, fascia, muscles, and tendons form and set up a cycle of retearing and pain. This technique breaks that cycle by:

– Utilizing transverse friction to reorganize scar tissue, increase circulation and promote the growth of new collagen fibers

– Create conditions for optimal scar tissue formation without adhesions

– Prevent the formation of future adhesions with movement exercises, stretches and strengthening

– Identify factors that predispose one to injury and address them (poor posture, lax ligaments, improper lifting, etc)


Injuries that benefit from transverse friction therapy include:

  • Text neck
  • Whiplash
  • Rotator cuff injuries
  • Low back pain
  • Sacroiliac joint pain
  • Hip pain
  • IT band tendonitis
  • Tennis elbow
  • Golfer’s elbow
  • MCL strain or tear
  • LCL strain or tear
  • Sprained ankle
  • Patellar tendonitis

What is orthopedic massage?

Orthopedic massage is different from other forms of massage in that it is not a single modality, but a comprehensive system that includes assessment, treatment and rehabilitation to resolve soft tissue pain and injuries. Assessment consists of active, passive and resisted orthopedic tests to pinpoint which tissues (muscle, ligament, tendon, bursa, joint capsule, etc) are strained or injured. Depending on the assessment, the applicable massage technique is chosen for treatment or the person is referred out to the appropriate medical practitioner (physical therapist, physician, neurologist, etc) if massage is not indicated. Rehabilitation may be specific stretching and strengthening exercises or gentle self mobilizations.