What is Myofascial Release?


Most of us know a bit about our muscles, but fascia was ignored for years (literally cut away and binned in anatomy training). The fascia is all the connective tissue that holds us together, comprising of different tissue types and forming a 3D web throughout the body. More recently, we’re recognising the important roles it plays in the body, including around how we experience pain. A myofascial approach focuses on working with the muscles and the fascia.


Myofascial Release can mean different things to different people – like with any hands-on therapy, what a therapist offers is a mix of their education, interpretation and experience, we are all unique, just like you as the client, so I’ll introduce my approach.

Specific Myofascial (MF) techniques are often really slow pressure or static holds, usually without oil or minimal oil. The pressure is gentle but the effect can feel deep.

I use both Direct and Indirect Fascial Techniques.

During Indirect Techniques, you just relax and focus on what you can feel, maybe adding in some breathwork. The therapist will apply a gentle stretch or hold and then wait to give time for the tissue to respond.

During Direct Techniques, you will carry out a simple movement to engage and release the tissue, like pointing and flexing the ankle whilst the therapist applies a pressure or slow movement through tissue.

In both types, there’s definitely an element of teamwork between therapist and client, with us both focusing on what’s happening in the tissue and communicating about it.


Myofascial Techniques can be helpful for any pain or discomfort you’re experiencing, particularly long-term, recurring or persistent pain which might be the result of long-term stress, postural imbalances, emotional or physical trauma (injury). They can also feel great and blend in really nicely with massage for an enjoyable treatment experience, so I might suggest we include something to target a specific issue or for a relaxation boost.

I also offer a series of 3 Structural Bodywork Sessions which systematically treats the whole body over the 3 weekly/fortnightly appointments.  You don’t need to have any specific pain or issues to receive this treatment, although treating the whole body might help specific issues and we will discuss and monitor how and what you feel during and between sessions. Do get in touch if you want to find out more about this.


Myofascial Release is something that was introduced to me during my Sports & Remedial diploma as an idea & useful technique. Then about 5 years ago, I did some training with Myofascial Release UK, which developed my understanding of fascia and anatomy. It shifted the way I approached the body, clients and any pain or limitation they were experiencing. It also gave me a ‘starter toolkit’ to work with clients and I’ve used some alongside massage techniques, where it felt appropriate for clients. It seemed to yield really positive results for some clients, particularly those with longer-term or persistent pain issues, so I wanted to learn more.

I completed my Certificate in Advanced Myofascial Release in the summer of 2023 with Jing – 10 days down in Brighton, with excellent tutors and 27 other therapists, fully-immersed in learning and exploring fascial bodywork (and with daily immersion in the sea too, it was a brilliant experience).

Why not add massage to your active holiday?

I’m excited to have teamed up with Graham at Cleikum Mill Lodge to offer massage visits to his self-catering, group accommodation in Innerleithen.
We can put together a bespoke package for your group needs or you can book an appointment at www.silvertreestudio.co.uk
Graham has thought of everything to make his lodge active-holiday-friendly – it’s cosy, comfortable, has a brilliant bike store & drying room and now you can get massage too!
It’s popular with pro/amateur bike teams, walkers, family & friend groups and has plenty of space to bring a massage couch (or 2) for relaxation, recovery or event-prep.
We look forward to working with Graham & his guests 👍

What is Pilates?

Ever wondered what Pilates actually is?
Read on …


What is Pilates?
It is a method of exercise developed by Joseph Pilates in the early 20th century. Joseph worked with athletes and dancers so many of his exercises are complex and challenging. In Contemporary Pilates we use deconstructed versions of his exercises – they have the same goals and benefits but are more suitable and accessible for ‘normal people’.
Contemporary Pilates combines the principles and exercises of Joseph Pilates with our more modern knowledge resulting in a low-impact, safe and effective approach.

Why Pilates?
By focusing on alignment, breathing and moving from your core, simple exercises can be made more effective and bring lots of benefits. Benefits including strengthening your core, increasing flexibility, reducing aches & pains, especially in your back, and, importantly, feeling good!

Who is it suitable for?
Pilates classes are suitable for all ages and abilities; for people who are fit and well and those recovering from injury or in pain. Every teacher has their own approach so you just have to find a class that works for you. My classes have a focus on leaving your body feeling more comfortable and working well and you can work at your own pace to find the challenges you need. Classes are small and friendly with clean equipment and appropriate spacing to allow social distancing.
For rehabilitation after injury or for an individual program, one-to-one sessions are recommended, at least to get you started.

My story & training
As a regular gym-goer, I started Pilates just because the class fitted with my family/work timetable. Soon I started to notice benefits than none of my other activities gave me. I felt stronger, my balance was better, I had fewer aches and pains and I seemed to be moving and breathing better. I also found the focus on mind, body & breath helped give me a bit of calm in a busy week. The benefits added up and I was hooked.
After years of telling everyone they should try Pilates, I decided to do the teacher-training myself. In 2018 I trained in ‘Realistic Pilates’, a contemporary form of Pilates designed for real people with real bodies. Over 2020/1, I completed another diploma from MK Pilates also gaining membership of SPM (Society for the Pilates Method). Most importantly, I gain knowledge through working with clients.

If you’re thinking about Pilates, why not get in touch & find out what it will do for you!

Introducing my new logo

Thanks to Trish Ward at WARD deign for her creative talent, I love the result.

Now to change it on business cards, website, facebook …  I feel a list coming on!

Online booking is open

Lovely to be back open again offering massage and teaching Pilates.

Providing a safe, effective and comfortable experience for you is my goal, same as ever, just with masks and more cleaning!

Don’t live with the niggles & stress any more, get booked in!

For Silver Tree Studio, Peebles: www.smartscheduling.com/helencrowley

Limited availability at Lavender, Edinburgh, but worth a look: www.smartscheduling.com/kthandb

Get in touch for more info and a chat if you have any questions.

Look forward to seeing you!

Re-opening dates: Massage & Pilates

The last few months have given us all challenges, but I hope the blue skies and signs of Spring are lifting your spirits, they definitely are mine.

Massage Appointments and Pilates Classes
We hope to be able to re-open Silver Tree Studio in Peebles for massage appointments on 26th April and Pilates classes on 17th May.

My online booking is not open yet for massage while I rebook those who had appointments cancelled during lockdown. Please contact me directly if you want to book in.

In the meantime, I hope you’re surviving and adapting ok. I am keeping busy with family and learning and continuing to offer services online.

With lockdown, we’ve all had to adapt to do more online and this is what I now offer online:

Pilates classes – 45min Zoom class with a ‘restorative vibe’ – simple movements to stretch, strengthen and re-balance to keep you feeling and moving better for whatever else you’re doing from desk-working to wind-surfing. Tue 10am & 7pm, Fri 9am

Pilates sessions  – tailored for just you or a small group at a time that suits you, e.g. sessions to support recovery from illness/injury or for friends or work colleagues who want a healthy activity to do together

Online consultations & guided self-treatment – to discuss, assess and advise on any pain or niggles you have at the moment. Anything from a quick chat to a full guided self-treatment or exercise programme. The first appointment’s free, why wait until you can get a massage?

Pilates classes are booked through me. You can book 1:1 Pilates & online consults through me or online: https://smartscheduling.com/helencrowley

Here if you have any questions or just want to say hello,
Helen 🙂

January ’21 update: Temporarily closed again …

With the extension of restrictions in Scotland, I won’t be able to offer any massage until at least February.
If you have an appointment, I’ll be in touch individually to reschedule.
Pilates classes & 1:1s can continue online if that works for you.
In the meantime, do look after yourselves and each other. Remember your self-care, whether it’s a hot bath, movement, relaxation or cake …
It’s a bit annoying, but we coped before and we can do it again.
Stay in touch, Helen 🙂

Covid-19 update

*Covid-19 update*

I am pleased to say from today I can offer in-person massage appointments. These are now available at Silver Tree Studio. This is a beautiful, new treatment room off Peebles High Street which is easy to clean and ventilate for your safety.

I am unable to offer home or workplace visits at the moment. However, I plan to be offering 2 Sundays in Lavender in August, which will be available to book via the Lavender website soon. If you’d like to book in, please get in touch. It’d be lovely to hear from you, I have missed my Sundays seeing Edinburgh people.

As I phase back in treatments and locations, I appreciate your patience with changes that I’ve had to bring in. The biggest change you’ll see is around reducing our face to face contact by doing consultations by video call and wearing masks; with these and other smaller changes, I’ll guide you through so you have a safe and relaxing treatment.

During lockdown, I diversified my business to offer more online services – including Pilates and an online alternative to a massage treatment, more info on these can be found on my booking page or ask me.

I aim to help you feel and function better with a safe, effective and enjoyable experience, using massage, Pilates and self-care tailored in a way that works for you as an individual. Whether your goal is to support sports & exercise, for management of injuries or chronic conditions or you simply like massage and Pilates, you’re in the right place!

I look forward to hearing from you,

Contact details here

Book here

The best of East meets West

I’m excited to offer you a new treatment combining my favourite East & West massage techniques designed to leave you both blissfully relaxed and invigorated.

Thai Foot Massage
Swedish/Sports Back, Neck, Shoulder massage
75min appointment (including a bit of chill time)

Why Thai Foot Massage?

It is a great treat for your feet, whether you run, walk or love shoes. According to Thai Medicine, the whole body is mapped out on the sole of the foot and massaging this can promote healing on a deep level. The treatment involves a mix of hands-on massage with organic coconut oil and stimulation of reflex points on the sole of the foot with a traditional rosewood stick.

Why a Swedish/Sports back, neck and shoulder massage?

Modern life often leaves us with tension in our neck and shoulders or an achy lower back, so gentle, deep massage focusing on these areas can ease away tension to help you feel great and function better. The treatment uses organic coconut oil and involves a mix of Swedish massage, hands-free techniques and gentle stretches.

And a bit of breathing space …

Your appointment will finish with a few minutes relaxation and a warm or cold drink (depending on the weather) so you can gather your thoughts as you return back into your day.

We have moved …

We moved to Peebles in May 2019.

This was a great decision for my family but, I appreciate, not so convenient for Edinburgh clients.

I am continuing to offer some appointments in Edinburgh on Sundays so hope to see lots of you there.

There are many clients I no longer see since the move and *sniff* I do miss you. The working relationship that builds up over a number of appointments gives, I feel, a better experience and result for the client and makes for rewarding, enjoyable work as a therapist.  However, life often changes so I am embracing the new and enjoying meeting new clients in Peebles.

Do get in touch if you have any questions about how massage might be able to help you.