Sotai is a form of postural realignment that was developed by Dr. Hashimoto, in Japan, in the 1970’s. It is founded on the principle that the restoration of chronically tightened (shortened) muscles can be loosened through the use of natural, pain free, movement to their normal resting length. This then relieves any pain and postural distortions that are often caused by shortened muscles. Sotai works on the principles and observations of the ease of movement within the body, allowing the practitioner to tailor specific exercises to correct the problem without the need to learn specific exercises for each and every body movement restriction.
Easy Motion Barrier
To increase the resting length of a muscle, or muscles, Sotai observes the “easy motion barrier” (how far the muscle stretches before discomfort) and the uses the following mechanisms to increase the range of movement: –
- Post Isometric Relaxation – This is when, after a muscle has been worked against force, there is a window of about ten seconds during which the muscle can be stretched (or relaxed) towards, and eventually to, it’s normal length at rest.
- Reciprocal Inhibition – Where the muscle is made to relax due to the use of its antagonist (for example, to flex the biceps muscle it has to be contracted while its antagonist muscle, the triceps, is relaxed). Reciprocal Inhibition is often used on more painful and acute conditions.