Dr. Z Blog

Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization (IASTM)

What is IASTM: This type of treatment is performed with ergonomically designed instruments that detect and treat fascial restrictions, encourage rapid localization and effectively treat areas exhibiting soft tissue fibrosis, chronic inflammation, or degeneration. Supplementation with exercises and additional modalities, such as addressing muscle strength and imbalances for example, should be used in conjunction with IASTM to synergistically improve symptoms.


How does it work: Instruments effectively break down fascial restrictions and scar tissue. The instruments allow the clinician to effectively locate areas of restriction in the tissues and treat that area with the appropriate amount of pressure. The process of IASTM introduces controlled microtrauma to the affected soft tissue, in turn stimulating a local inflammatory response. This microtrauma also initiates reabsorption of inappropriate fibrosis or excessive scar tissue and facilitates a cascade of healing activities resulting in remodeling of affected soft tissue structures.



  • Limited motion
  • Pain during motion
  • Motor control issues
  • Muscle recruitment issues


Conditions IASTM is Frequently Used:

  • Neck Pain
  • Back Pain
  • Tennis Elbow
  • Golfers Elbow
  • Carpal Tunnel
  • Plantar Fasciitis
  • And MUCH more!



  • Compromised tissue integrity (open wound, infection, tumor)
  • Active implants (pacemaker, internal defibrillator, picc/pump lines)
  • Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)
  • Cervical carotid sinus


**Information gathered from: Physiopedia. (n.d.). Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization. Retrieved from https://www.physio-pedia.com/Instrument_Assisted_Soft_Tissue_Mobilization