From the MASSAGE Magazine article, “Effective Pain Relief: Neuromuscular Therapy,” by Judith DeLany, in the April 2009 issue. Article summary: Over the last half-century, neuromuscular therapy (NMT) has evolved as a notable manual-therapy technique and found its home in a wide variety of practices.

by Judith DeLaney

NMT is sometimes inaccurately labeled deep-tissue massage. Although NMT is sometimes used on deeper tissues of the body, it is important to understand that the superficial and intermediate tissues are often involved and must also be assessed in order to determine precisely where the problem lies.

For instance, low-back pain often stems from the deeply placed psoas muscle on the anterior surface of the spinal column; however, trigger points in the more superficial anterior muscle, rectus abdominis, can also refer into the low back and should not be overlooked in order to get to the deep tissues.

Judith DeLany ( is an international speaker on the treatment of soft-tissue pain and dysfunction, with particular focus on NMT.