FA ARTICLE Architecture of connective tissue as parameter for Proprioception – 2012 EN

In this chapter “Proprioception in Fascia, The tensional Network of the Human Body, Part 2, Fascia as an organ of communication. Eds. Robert Schleip et al., 2012″ it is argued that for the functional understanding of the role of mechanoreceptors in the process of proprioception  it is more appropriate to think in terms or architecture of connective and muscular tissue than in terms of anatomic elements like muscles, ligaments and so on (van der Wal 2009)


Without doubt fasciae respectively fascial structures play a substantial role in the process of proprioception (Benjamin 2009, Langevin 2006, Stecco 2007b). Fascial components like membranes and septa or deep and superficial fascia are an intricate and integrated part of the locomotor apparatus (Wood Jones 1944, Standring 2005). To play that functional role in proprioception the fascial structure should be equipped with adequate neuroanatomical substrate (‘proprioreceptors’). For the quality of the centripetal information it is, however, an important feature how the mechanical architecture of the connective tissue structure at stake relates to the skeletal and muscular tissue in a given area (Benjamin 2009; Vander Wal 2009). Only if a given fascial structure has a mechanical architectural relationship with muscular or skeletal elements, it is able provide the mechanoreceptive information needed for proprioception. This means that the aptitude for providing centripetal mechanoreceptive information by a fascial structure depends on its architecture and structural relationship with muscular and skeletal tissue and not simply on its topography (Van der Wal 2009).

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