Trigenics® in Sports Chiropractic
In addressing soft tissue injuries from both a mechanical and neurological level, Trigenics® is versatile and highly effective.
By Dr John De Finney DC, FCCSS(C), RTP, FIIT
Canadian Chiropractor- October 2001
Dr John De Finney is a 1976 graduate from the Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College with a specialty in sports chiropractic. He is also one of the founding members of the College of Chiropractic Sports Sciences and one of its first three Fellows. He is the clinical director of a multi-disciplinary practice in Markham, Ontario, Canada, and is also a world-class age group runner who has published journal papers and articles on the topic of running. Dr. De Finney the director of sports sciences and a research consultant with a specific interest in running and sports injuries and rehabilitation with the Trigenics® Institute.
A new treatment approach, which attains an unusually quick recovery in soft tissue injuries, is Trigenics. My first experience with Trigenics® came about after reading an article by Dr Seymour Pisarek in the February 2001 issue of Canadian Chiropractor entitled, “Trigenics: A New Paradigam in Soft Tissue Therapeutics. Rhomboid Decelerator Dysfunction Syndrome.”(1) I read the article and after only one treatment of using my version of Trigenics, the patient reported complete relief from the discomfort. Several months later he still remains pain-free.
The therapy involves an interactive and integrated assessment and treatment system that combines Eastern and Western manual medicines. It is distinctly different than other manual treatments in that it is primarily based upon a neurological rather than a mechanical model of treatment. The synergistic application of three established treatment methodologies instantaneously relaxes, strengthens and/or lengthens muscles, as well as reduces inflammation and pain. Patient assessment involves a combination of standard chiropractic, orthopedic and neurological diagnostic tests with muscle testing based on Kendall and Kendall.(2) An appealing aspect of Trigenics® is that is also functions as an active resisted exercise involving direct therapeutic interaction between the patient and the Trigenics® practitioner or “Trigenist”. This establishes a powerful healing bond between patient and doctor and enables the patient to be an active participant in their recovery. During treatment, a specific form of acupressure (PDA) is applied in a similar yet different manner to the work by Travell and Simons.(3) Controlled diaphragmatic breathing (4) with target visualization is adjunctively incorporated. The principles of reciprocal inhibition (5,6) are applied to allow the practitioner deeper access into the muscle with reduced pain and resistance. Using the inverse myotatic reflex (7), muscle are then lengthened to re-establish healthy neuromusculoskeletal dynamics and prevent further injuries. For rehabilitative therapy, Trigenics® neurogenically unloads (relaxes) muscles and strengthens or lengthens them by resetting their gamma bias to restore and optimize their functional integrity. Effect of treatment is instantaneous, yet also cumulative with successive applications.
It is also believed that with the muscle in many different successive position or lengths during application of a Trigenics® procedure, additional cross bridge binding potentials are instantaneously produced with an overall cumulative increase of vast muscle power. This unique instantaneous strengthening effect is seen to have tremendous potential in providing athletes with a drugless alternative to performance enhancement therapy. For performance enhancement, the Trigenist will initially do ‘balancing’ of an athletes’s muscles. Results of strength and length tests on the athlete’s musculature are mapped out on a chart indicating which muscles need to be strengthened and/or lengthened. The athlete will thus be treated accordingly with Trigenics® strengthening or lengthening procedures. In addition, each sport requires specific muscle groups to be stronger or longer for optimal performance. In order to create this state, the Trigenist then uses another portion of the Trigenics muscle-testing chart targeting specifically which muscles need to be additionally lengthened or strengthened to enhance performance for that particular sport. The athlete will then be treated accordingly to optimize their performance with a coordinated combination of Trigenics performance enhancement procedures.
1. Pisarek, Seymour. Trigenics: A new paradigm in soft tissue therapeutics. Rhomboid Decelerator Dysfunction Syndrome. Canadian Chiropractor, Vol.6, #1:18, 41, Feb 2001
2. Kendall F.P., Kendall McCreary E., Provance P. G., Muscles Testing and Function 4th edition with Posture and Pain. Williams & Wilkins, 1993
3. Travell, TG. and Simons, Dg., Myofascial Pain and Dysfunction: The Trigger Point Manual, Williams and Wilkins, Baltimore, MD, 1998.
4. Monaldi Arch, The pathophysiology of hyperventilation syndrome. Folgering H. Dept Rulmonology Dekkerswald, University of Mijmegen, Groesbeek, The Netherlands. Chest Dis 1999, Aug: 54 (4): 365-72
5. Sherington, CS.: Reciprocal innervation of antagonist muscles. Fourteenth note. On double reciprocal innervation. Proc. R. So. Lond. B. Biol. Sci., 91: 249-268, 1009.
6. Ikai T, et al. Reciprocal inhibition in the forearm during voluntary contraction and thinking about movement. Electromyograph & Clinical Neurophysiology, 36 (5): 295 – 304, 1996, July-August.
7. Knott M and Voss DE. Proprioceptive neuromuscular Facilitation: Patterns and Techniques, 2nd ed; New York: Hoeber Medical Division, Harper & Row, 1968