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Benefits of Massage
Experts estimate that upwards of ninety percent of disease is stress-related. And perhaps nothing ages us faster, internally and externally, than high stress. Massage is an effective tool for managing this stress, which translates into:
- Decreased anxiety.
- Enhanced sleep quality.
- Greater energy.
- Improved concentration.
- Increased circulation.
- Reduced fatigue.
Massage can also help specifically address a number of health issues. Bodywork can:
- Alleviate low-back pain and improve range of motion.
- Assist with shorter, easier labor for expectant mothers and shorten maternity hospital stays.
- Ease medication dependence.
- Enhance immunity by stimulating lymph flow—the body’s natural defense system.
- Exercise and stretch weak, tight, or atrophied muscles.
- Help athletes of any level prepare for, and recover from, strenuous workouts.
- Improve the condition of the body’s largest organ—the skin.
- Increase joint flexibility.
- Lessen depression and anxiety.
- Promote tissue regeneration, reducing scar tissue and stretch marks.
- Pump oxygen and nutrients into tissues and vital organs, improving circulation.
- Reduce post surgery adhesions and swelling.
- Reduce spasms and cramping.
- Relax and soften injured, tired, and overused muscles.
- Release endorphins—amino acids that work as the body’s natural painkiller.
- Relieve migraine pain.
Swedish Massage is what you would find at the average spa. It consists of five major strokes; 1) Effleurage (gliding), 2) Petrissage (kneading), 3) Friction, 4) Tapotement (striking), 5) Vibration
Swedish Massage is good for general relaxation, reducing muscle tension, improving blood and lymph circulation, and improving muscle tone. It is named for Pehr Ling, a Swedish Physiologist who helped develop the modern system of massage and physical therapy.
Deep tissue therapy is used to help mechanically lengthen muscles and work out “trigger points” (small, sore “knots” in a muscle that can radiate pain to other areas and are very painful when touched). Special stretching techniques can give the muscles extra length and help jump start a patient on a permanent stretching program to maintain healthy muscles. Much like connective tissue massage, this therapy can be uncomfortable and requires open communication between patient and therapist.
Hot stone massage has been a part of many different indigenous healing methods. The heat works well with massage to soothe the body and work out muscular tension. Warm stones are used by the therapist for a relaxing and enjoyable experience.
NOTE: Not recommended for patients with any health issues that would prevent the use of heat, for example, inflammatory diseases.
Reiki is a Japanese energy healing technique. The term Reiki means “Universal life energy”. Not tied to any religion or specific scientific teaching, this method involves the therapist laying her hands gently on the patient’s body or above the patient to channel healing energy. It has been described as “raising the vibration” or “increasing the energy” of the patient. Although the mechanism is not currently understood, scientific studies have shown that Reiki Therapists can significantly increase their own Biomagnetic field. Other studies have shown reduction of pain and increase in speed of healing for recipients of Reiki. Currently, many Cancer centers offer Reiki to patients. Reiki is done fully clothed while reclining on a massage table.
The Benefits of Pregnancy Massage Pregnancy massage provides relaxation by relieving stress on joints. It eases neck and back pain, helps you to keep good posture and relaxes and provides flexibility to birthing muscles.
Pregnancy massage aids the circulatory and lymphatic systems, which keeps blood flowing to both the mother and the baby. It stimulates different glands in the body, which help to stabilize hormone levels, and relieves nervous tension throughout the body. And the nurturing touch during pregnancy massage promotes relaxation and provides emotional support. Post-Partum Pregnancy Massage Pregnancy massage is also good after giving birth. Postpartum pregnancy massage can help restore a mother’s body to its pre-pregnancy condition. It helps to realign the body weight, and tones the over-stretched skin over the belly. As with all massage, it relieves muscle tension and stress from mothering duties!