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Michael Phelps uses Graston Technique therapy in Olympic training

Michael Phelps training secrets, Graston Technique
Michael Phelps on the cover of Aug 2012
Credits: Details Magazine
Michael Phelps, the 14 time olympic gold medalist, briefly mentions using Graston Technique instruments as part of his training recovery in his interview with Details magazine by Selene Yeager.

DETAILS: So what do you do for recovery?

Michael Phelps: My trainer, Keenan [Robinson], uses Graston tools, these little metal crowbars. He carves them into my shoulder blades, my back, my knee, my hamstrings—wherever I'm really tight—to loosen things up. It's pretty intense. Obscenities fly out of my mouth the whole time, and I'm usually bruised for two days after it.
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Here is also a tweet from Michael Phelp's official Twitter account:
Graston Technique, ice tub and sleep is my day off today....weeeee @kkrirsh

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Seattle chiropractor, Dr. Kevin Rindal, talks about his experience with working with Keenan Robinson, ATC, who worked with Michael Phelps before his first Olympics at the University of Michigan.
Phelps will be one of the first to tell you that a major part of his success is staying healthy and receiving regular treatment and Keenan is the primary person that oversees and performs treatment to Phelps; he also guides Phelps’ dryland training.  One of the tools Keenan frequently uses for recovery and rehabilitation with Phelps is Graston Technique.
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From my point of view, this validates Graston Technique for as one of the best forms of myofascial or soft-tissue therapy. Here is a top world olympic athlete and he is willing to regularly use Graston Technique to keep in top shape. I know that Graston Technique is being used more in olympic training facilities as more sports chiropractors such as Dr. Michael Reed, Dr. Richard Robinson, Dr. Blase Toto, Dr. Eric St. Pierre, etc. are participating in their training. Other Graston Technique providers may try to play down the bruising by saying that there is no bruising. I will say that it depends on how healthy the area is on the patient and how aggressive the patient wants the therapy. The black and blue bruising typically only occurs on a small portion of the treated area in my practice. Often, there is not visible bruising especially after having several treatments. There is always soreness to the touch for about 2 days. Bruising is not the point of the therapy like some Oriental medicine treatments like coining or guasha. I will start lightly to warm up the area and go deeper as it gets less sensitive. I simply tell patients to let me know when I find a tender area or the deep pressure cannot be tolerated. When I hear that someone has screamed out obscenities with GT, I feel that person's technique would not work with patients with severe pain. On the other hand, I would be perfectly willing to be aggressive with a healthy athlete who needs the results now and not in many treatments.

ChiroWorks Care Center
Anthony Tsai, D.C.
Chiropractor in San Jose, CA
Graston Technique Certified
FAKTR Certified

Disclaimer: The content in this blog is for informational purposes only and an opinion for specific individualized circumstances. It is not a prescription for therapy or diagnosis for you. All opinions expressed in any referenced articles are solely those of the particular author and do not necessarily represent the opinions of Anthony Tsai, Graston Technique®, its employees, providers or affiliates. Any opinions of the author on the site are or have been rendered based on scientific facts and/or anecdotal evidence, under certain conditions, and subject to certain assumptions, and may not and should not be used or relied upon for any other purpose, including but not limited to for use in or in connection with any legal proceeding. If there is any issue with the content or images on this blog, contact us an we will remove it immediately. Please refer to for more information.



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