► Disclaimer (Please Read):
Please understand that while the information presented within this article is indeed for achieving one’s “best body ever,” such endeavor has absolutely nothing to do with devaluing or shaming one’s current appearance. This quest is about recognizing personal value exactly as one is, and then celebrating that value by becoming one’s most confident, empowered and thriving version.
Also, THIS IS NOT A COMMERCIAL OR SPONSORED POST. I do not work for Ashley Black, and was offered no incentive for writing this article. I pride myself on delivering authentic and well-researched information – from the well of my own inspiration, and never accept incentives in exchange for recommending products on this website. The only revenue I may receive in exchange is a small commission from Amazon for referring readers to Black’s book.
It was after midnight on a Tuesday. I was crawling into bed when I heard my phone buzz from the nightstand. I reached for it halfheartedly – its screen glowing with a string of text messages from a friend.
In between yawns, I opened the message and began reading it when, two minutes in, my breath sliced through the night air with barely the force of a whisper.
“Daaaaaaamn, ” I gasped into its glow, nearly scratching my eyes. Because “damn” was all I could muster.
There before me was a plethora of untouched and unfiltered legs, tummies and asses – all ages, colors, shapes and sizes – and prefaced with: “Have you heard about this Ashley Black woman? I read about her in this fitness forum. All of these women are freaking out over this stick thing she invented. But, she sounds right up your alley.”
It hit me like a wink from the divine.
Unbeknownst to my friend, I had bookmarked Black’s site the week prior after eavesdropping on a conversation at a nail salon. Intrigued by what I overheard, I conducted a brief research – enough to learn that she had invested two decades of her life into training and rehabilitating the bodies of professional male athletes and celebrities. Through that work, she had developed her own science – Fasciology™ – which she later began sharing with the public.
In less than three years, Black had garnered a cult of devoted women who were professing their eternal indebtedness to her “stick thing’ invention, the FasciaBlaster®. The device promised to be as much a cure for cellulite and unsightly problem areas as for chronic pain and injuries.
I planned to delve deeper, but had other interviews to conduct, other articles to craft and this elusive tool was muffled by the noise of them – crowded and pushed to the background. This time, though, I got the memo.
While waiting for my own FasciaBlaster® to arrive, I launched head-first into research. And, I was so astounded by my findings, I slipped into a perpetual state of sweating.
Could this be it – the cure for stubborn problem areas? Cellulite? Saddlebags? Aging skin? Inexplicable pain, even?
I embarked on a mission to bring this information to my readers – nearly possessed, in fact – scrolling and reading tirelessly until my fingers went numb and my eyeballs fell heavy. I scoured forums, message boards and Youtube accounts. I joined the FasciaBlaster® Facebook group, which then turned my newsfeed into a collage of oily body parts.
I began stalking the physical evolutions of Black’s devotees – all real people with real results. I witnessed their scars smoothing and diminishing, their stomachs flattening, their waists cinching, their jawlines redefining and their legs streamlining. I watched as their asses went from snoring atop their thighs to standing at attention and saluting. And, most meaningful of all, I watched as their countenances brightened. I watched as they came alive.
And, each time I crawled into the bath and put my own FasciaBlaster® to flesh, I felt like a soldier suiting up to join a new and empowering revolution.
So, I then did what any respectable journalist and researcher who writes for a beauty magazine would do: I reached out to Black for an interview. Four months later, I found myself in an elevator at a hotel in Beverly Hills, rising up to meet Ashley while chatting about Lymphoma with her assistant Bart.
But, that was only the beginning.
In the hours that followed, it became clear that Black is not in the business of trying to convince anyone of her greatness. Rather, she is extending an invitation for all to become an active participant in the cultivation of the most optimal version of their body; to gain an understanding of why cellulite develops, why injuries occur and what aging actually is. She encourages her followers to be in awe of the power they possess to improve themselves. Black is a therapist with an impressive celebrity clientele but, above all, she is an educator.
Continue reading for unfolding of what I now know to be true: Ashley Black and her magic wand make body dreams come true.
An Afternoon With Celebrity Bodywork Therapist & Guru Ashley Black
As I entered the quarters of Blacks’s penthouse suite, every shred of guarded professionalism I had combusted into a cloud of relenting smoke. Before I could say “hello,” Black dropped her turkey sandwich to its plate and bounced from her seat to hug me.
A pint-sized and sinewy blonde, she greeted me as though she were my long-lost neighbor from childhood (and less like a world-traveling body magician who regularly has her hands all over the proverbial physiques of Leonardo DiCaprio, Timbaland and Debra Messing – just to name a few).
In the hours that followed, Black provoked me to cheer, ooh, ahh, double over in laughter and blink back tears as we conversed about cellular memory, common fitness myths, epi-genetics and women’s issues.
She enlightened me to her own health struggles, and to her tireless years spent wading knee-deep in research – even when she felt she was shouting at the top of her lungs with no willing listeners. Mostly, she stands in awe of how her unwavering devotion to her work now spreads like ripples of healing water into the lives of total strangers.
At the time of this writing, Black’s debut book – The Cellulite Myth: It’s Not Fat; It’s Fascia, which is scheduled to release in February 2017 – holds the number one spot in multiple categories on Amazon. And, it is no surprise considering the estimated 10,000 written stories she has received from women who consider the FasciaBlaster® to be a miracle for them. There are stories of women who, until recently, refused to allow their husbands to see them naked. There are stories of women who suffered through years of sexual pain, but were too ashamed to tell their doctors. So many ailments to be named – all fascia-related and all remedied.
“Each time I read that a woman is wearing shorts for the first time in decades, I get emotional all over again. All I can say is ‘Daaaaaaaamn’ every time because it is so much more than her feeling comfortable exposing her legs; it is her feeling comfortable in her own skin,” said Black.
A common thread is woven throughout her every endeavor: She genuinely cares how other women feel about themselves. “Not only do these painful physical restrictions and insecurities crucify women emotionally and mentally,” says Black, “but it crucifies all that they are capable of achieving. That hinders society as a whole.”
So, let it be known: Ashley Black cares that you feel sexy slipping into your party dress, that you feel comfortable frolicking on the beach after birthing your baby, that you roll out of bed pain-free and even that your booty is constructed to your highest architectural standards. But, above all, she cares that you understand both the cause and the remedy:
What Is Fascia, and Why Should I Care?
Have you ever sliced into a raw chicken breast and noticed the slippery, filmy layer covering the meat? Well, that is fascia. And, every nook and cranny of your body has it, too.
I asked Black to explain why fascia matters in regard to not only one’s appearance, but also to their quality of life.
“Fascia is a head-to-toe, hand-to-hand connective tissue system. It is a webbing that connects literally everything in the body, and it is what your blood and nerves run through. Because fascia is everywhere in the body and because the blood and nerves run through it, fascial care means not only circulatory and nervous system care, but also total body care.
Here is why: If you restore nerves, you restore movement and reduce pain. If you restore blood, you restore nutrients, oxygen, elastin and collagen to the skin. This means that when you restore your fascial health, you restore your quality of life as well as the quality of your physical appearance.”
And, that’s not all.
“Fascia is also the body’s primary communication system. It is the mind-to-body and body-to-mind connection. There is constantly information traveling through the fascia.
This means that everything – from a stomach ache to a migraine headache to a sagging neck to disproportionate thighs to dimpled skin – is fascia-related because fascia is everywhere in the body and is serving as the body’s high-speed Internet system.”
So, What Does Cellulite Have to Do With it?
Black tossed her head back slightly and released a sigh of annoyance at the mention of the formidable word. “I want everyone to understand that cellulite is just a label we have given the appearance of something that is not real. I even cringe saying the word – as though it is an actual thing. Because it isn’t; it is just something we all bought into.”
And, it is something that American women collectively spend billions of dollars a year to remedy – from creams to potions to in-office treatments. So, then, what does Black believe about this fictitious epidemic labeled by the masses as cellulite?
She answered, “Fat is fat is fat. There is no chemical difference between fat that appears smooth and fat that appears lumpy. When the fascia is distorted, the appearance of what is underneath it will be distorted. Think of fascia like a casing over sausage meat. If you disrupt the casing, the appearance of the meat is going to be redistributed. But, meat is still just meat. It hasn’t changed; it only appears different because the casing was disrupted.”
So, the reason your best friend’s cellulite may look like giant craters while your cellulite may appear as tiny bulges is because your fascia is doing different things. The lines, dents, ripples, lumps and bumps – they appear different but have the same cause: fat sitting under your jacked-up fascia. If you “un-jack” your fascia, the lines, dents, ripples lumps and bumps return to smooth.
Black chimed in to confirm, “The fat, the muscle, the fluids and the fascia are collectively influencing each other to make up what we have labeled as cellulite. We have thrown it into one category – one medical diagnosis – when, in reality, ‘cellulite’ is all different kinds of fascial distortions. And, it is entirely fixable – but, only if you address the fascia.”
How Can the FasciaBlaster® Change My Body When Nothing Else Has?
How many times have you committed yourself fully to a fitness goal – completing all of the crunches, squats and side lunges – but never to construct a body resemblant to that of your dreams? This is because a muscle cannot be properly designed – or, oftentimes, even fire at all – if restricted fascia is binding it. There is no amount of dieting or exercise that can correct misalignment, poor symmetry or a dimpled skin appearance caused by unhealthy fascia.
After tireless research and my own experimentation, this is what I have come to believe about the FasciaBlaster®: It is not just an anti-cellulite tool; It is a remodeling tool. And, it is a total body wellness tool.
Black explains why: “Everything in the body wants to be smooth, aligned and parallel. When an injury or repeated poor movement pattern occurs, it causes the fascia to ‘tack’ into a shape it was never meant to take. It’s sort of it like two pieces of fabric jaggedly sewn together.
So, in essence, the scrubbing motion of the FasciaBlaster® is cleaning up, untangling and realigning the threads. At that point, blood flow returns. Once blood flow returns, lymphatic function and muscle activation are restored. Then, everything appears smooth and the body can be sculpted into your desired shape. It is total body remodeling and restoration.”
©TheDailyDoll.com / Lacey Johnson 2016
Please now refer to Part II of this series (releasing mid-December 2016): ‘Operation Fascia Freedom.’ Also, be sure to presell Black’s debut book, The Cellulite Myth: It’s Not Fat; It’s Fascia, which officially releases February 2017.
Also, for a more detailed account of Black’s compelling personal journey, as well as exclusive insights and tips not included within this series, check out my feature of her in the Winter Issue of Mirabella Magazine.