News from the road...and ABR illustrated :-)

Conferences on Cerebral Palsy and on Fascia Research -- at a glance... PLUS an amazing Video about Viscoelastic surprizes

Dear Friends,

Thanks a lot for your patience and understanding –for the last 5-6 weeks I have not managed to update this blog with any decent frequency due to the heavy schedule on the road.

I am finally back from the long trip and after few days of sleep recovery ready to deliver some content, which I hope will be of value to a parent of a special needs child. Both conferences: Fascia Congress in Amsterdam and Cerebral Palsy conference in Utrecht (another city in Holland, 20 min away from Amsterdam) provided tons of materials to contemplate and to process.

Our papers were included in the proceedings books of both conferences.

Fascia Congress:  
Article and Cover_Proceedings_Fascia Congress_1_small

A Global Status Quo On Cerebral Palsy 

BOSK_Abstract and Cover_small

As you can see from the titles, these are not exactly ‘ABR’ presentations but the deeper level theoretical works, mathematical models laying down the framework for the fundamentals of long-term fascia re-modeling, which is at the core of the ABR technique as specific set of tools designed to induce that fascia re-modeling in the deep layers, which is especially important for kids with Cerebral Palsy.


As a diligent conference attendee I have most of the important presentations recorded on audio with slides photographed. Together with the notes taken on the spot that provides for a comprehensive coverage and accuracy of quotes, however, at the same time that means a lot of post-conference work in order to sort all these piles of info and translate them into the coherent presentations that will be of value to you.

I must say that taking photographs of the slides turned out to be a somewhat challenging endeavour. My beloved Nikon D300 camera (the one we use during ABR evaluations) produces a loud ‘click’, which I am personally a big fan of – actually that’s the reason why we favor Nikons over Canons at ABR :-). It turned out that my fondness of the ‘Nikon click’ wasn’t shared by the rest of conference attendees – in the big hall of a lecture room the click echoes amazingly loud competing for attention with a speaker and drawing the irritated “Shhh-ss” from the crowd. Even though I was initially prepared to brush it off for the sake of better quality pictures to share with you, at the end I had to succumb to the public pressure and settle for the pocket camera, which turned out ok as well, although not as clear as I’d like to have.

Actually, in hindsight, I must concede that ABR delegation looked as quite an odd bunch: me with 2 photo cameras – because the pocket one runs out of battery fast, taking notes at the same time with a pile of colored pens; Sarah Lee (ABR Asia) with 2 digital audio recorders (just to make sure we do not miss anything) and occasional video recording of most important presentations; and Marc Driscoll (our biomedical engineer/research guy – if you haven’t met him yet) taking notes on research methodology.. We occupied 4-5 seats being really busy. In the afternoons we’d split up and attend the concurrent sessions, recording them as well – all with a goal of making the most out of the conference opportunity.

No effort is too much if the goal is to provide the cutting edge information to the busy ABR families, right? :-)Who cares about looking like an oddball among the straight-laced professionals as long as we make sure that we can deliver the information to you in full without missing the pieces that might turn out being very important?

I expect to start publishing things within a few days but meanwhile – here is another entertaining and thought-provoking video for you about Amazing Properties of Viscoelastic Structures

It was encouraging to hear your positive response to the video on ‘Inflatable tensegrity’ and I will definitely get back to that subject with better details in the future.

This new video is about“Corn starch experiment” and at first glance one might wonder how does that relate to ABR?!

Well, the link is straightforward – this video shows amazing properties of viscoelastic materials that respond dramatically different depending on what type of impact is delivered at them.

I think that it is very important for you to realize and especially visualize that anisotropic substances carry the potential for multiple responses depending on how one addresses them, challenging that ‘robotic’ view of the world that we all learn at school.

Most of the substances that one studied at school were a lot more straightforward – a piece of metal, or wood or classic liquid responded uniformly to a variety of mechanical impacts varying in magnitude of their response but not changing their properties.  At school you learned about one neat and orderly physical world – solids always respond as solids; liquids as liquids and so on.

And until today a lot of therapies (surgeries etc.) address the human body in that primitive way appealing to the images of this orderly world that you all carry all the way back from school days.

Fortunately the reality of living objects is a lot less regimental and omni-potent. The tissues of the human body and fascia in particular are viscoelastic and anisotropic, hence the same tissue will respond differently to the surgeon’s/ anatomists knife; neurologist’s hammer; forceful stretch; hard local pressure etc. (… and to the distributed quasi-static ABR application as well…).



Amazing isn’t it? Who’d think after the opening frames of having the presenters’ hands in that corn starch slosh that the same substance under the same temperature, pressure etc. will respond as a solid once the fast impact is applied?

Sure, in ABR we appeal to the opposite property of human body tissues – we want to bypass this “hardened” response of the superficial layers and we want to have our impact to be oscillatory not penetrating (ex. ‘sound waves’ vs. ‘wind waves’ ) etc. There are plenty of specific details to ABR technique and the type of impact we want to create in order to stimulate fascia re-modeling and strengthening.

However, the message of this video is simple – details matter. Viscoelastic structures are capable of really unexpected responses provided that there is a specific enough type of impact. Small change in mechanical properties of application might lead to a bid difference in tissue response….

I hope you enjoyed this glimpse at wonders of Mother Nature. Stay tuned for more :-) ….