The Deep Front Fascia line, aka the Trauma Line
Updated: May 19
In my last blog I introduced you to the concept of Fascia chains. Lines of force (movement) transmission which run along traceable 'meridians' or ‘chains’ of myofascia.
The concept is pretty simple: as our muscles are actually all linked together inside our body’s fascial network, when we activate a muscle in one place, a reaction somewhere else in the body is transmitted.
For example one of our Fascia chains is called the Superficial Back Line. This is a chain of interlinked muscles that runs from the soles of our feet, up the back of the legs, up the back, over the top of the head and ends just above the eyes.
To feel this yourself, take a moment to sit comfortably and close your eyes. Take a few deep breaths extending your exhalation, bringing the attention inside. When you feel pretty present, now try lifting your eyebrows. Not moving anything else but your eyebrows.
Where do you feel the movement? Only in your eyebrows? What about over the head? Try lifting them again. What about the back of the neck? What about all the way down the back? Back of the legs? Maybe even the soles of the feet.
It does require a level of sensitivity to feel a response all the way down in the soles of the feet, but even without that, I’m pretty sure you will feel it over your head and in your neck!
And so, wait, you “only” lifted your eyebrows right? So how is it possible that that seemingly small movement has a reaction all the way down into our foot soles? You guessed it: because of the interconnectedness of the muscles through the fascia; in this case through the Superficial Back Line.
It’s not just small ‘eyebrow lifting’ movements that are sent throughout fascia chains. Stability, strain, tension, fixation, resilience, and even postural compensation, are all distributed via these lines. So if we have an issue somewhere ‘down’ the chain, we actually often start seeing compensation happen in other parts of the line. An issue in the lower or upper back leading to tension headaches... Is this possible? Yes it definitely is.
Deep Front Fascia Line (DFL) – the ‘Anchor’ or ‘Trauma’ line
The Fascia chain that I spend most of my time working with and which is my personal favorite is the Deep Front Line.
The name says it already: this is a Fascia line which runs through the deeper layers of the body. This myofascia meridian runs from the bottom of the feet, through the thigh muscles (adductors), envelopes the Pelvic Floor, runs up the Psoas, through the main breathing Diaphragm, around the lungs and heart and up through the neck into the jaw and tongue.
This fascia line works like an anchor on which the superficial lines can do their work more easily and as such plays a major role in the body’s support by amongst others:
Lifting the inner arch of the foot
Stabilizing the hips (through the pelvis)
Support lumbar spine (lower back) from the front
Balancing the fragile neck and heavy head
Hence it’s nickname ‘anchor line’
Why ‘trauma line’
I personally like to also call it the ‘trauma line’ as this is where we can find a lot of our deepest pains and traumas stored on the physical level. As mentioned earlier the line encompasses the Psoas muscles, often referred to as the “muscles of the soul”, and it also runs through the Pelvic Floor and the inner thigh muscles. All of these muscles are areas of surprisingly strong sensations, accumulated tensions and emotional reactivity and it makes sense as functionally they are helping us to:
bring the legs to the belly – curling up like a fetus (psoas)
hold all of our abdominal organs including our genitals (pelvic floor) and
close our legs (adductor/thigh muscles)
All actions we would do when feeling afraid, in danger, attacked and as such wanting to protect our most vulnerable parts. Furthermore even when under a lot of mental-emotional stress research shows us that we unconsciously tense our Pelvic floors.
I will go more into the incredible topic of Trauma & Fascia in my future blogs, but for now let’s end with zooming back out to the entire DFL and its significance in this topic:
In order to work on these pains, tensions, traumas going directly to a pelvic floor or psoas may be a bit scary or feel too invasive. The great news is that because the areas are interconnected through the fascia we can actually also influence them by for instance working with our breath!
As we learned earlier our main breathing diaphragm (and actually even our the secondary breathing diaphragms) are part of the DFL, so the movement of the diaphragm as we breath will vibrate up and down the chain, allowing us to indirectly release possible tensions in the deeper, less accessible areas of our bodies.
SO even if you have had a busy, stressful day: 5-10mins of deep belly breathing is a great way to release the tension and support our deeper inner health & healing.
If you feel like joining me, I’d be happy to take a few deeps breaths together with you here and now. If you feel you would like even more of that feel free to hop over to our YouTube channel for this longer guided breath practice.