Touch is the first sense to develop in humans. The idea that touch can heal is an old one.
Massage Therapy is not a newly discovered practice. The first written records of massage date back 3,000 years to China. The word massage actually comes from an Arabic word meaning stroke. Only in recent years has massage therapy once again regained respectability and now enjoys unprecedented popularity.
Types of Massage
The Swedish Massage is the most commonly thought of when massage therapy is mentioned. The Swedish Massage uses long superficial strokes, deep kneading, and movement of the joints. It is the most commonly used type for relaxation.
Deep Tissue Therapy is a technique used to warm and hydrate tissues, to separate bundles of fibers, and for palpation and assessment. Deep tissue therapy also increases surface circulation and releases tension in the fibers of the muscles.
Neuromuscular Therapy is also referred to as “Trigger Point Therapy.” It is static ischemic pressure applied to certain points for a period of 10-60 seconds, sometimes referring sensation to other parts of the body. This is commonly used for clients who experience numbness in their extremities and any type of neck, back, or shoulder pain. A pain tolerance scale between 1 and 10 is used in this therapy, with 1 being light touch and 10 being beyond able to tolerate. The therapist will try to work in a pain tolerance range of 7-8.
Benefits of Massage
- Massage stimulates the production of endorphins, which decreases pain and promotes a feeling of wellbeing.
- Massage improves body image in people suffering from eating disorders.
- Massage is being used to boost athletic performance, reduce agitation in Alzheimer patients, and relieve stress at disaster sites.
- By stimulating the circulation and lowering stress hormones, massage therapy eases stiffness and pain in arthritis sufferers. Some older people, self-conscious about full-body treatment, prefer hand and foot massages.
- Massage Therapy has also been proven to be effective in eliminating stress and reducing tension.
- Massage Therapy has shown positive effects on conditions such as colic, hyperactivity, diabetes and migraines.
- Massage may increase the lymph flow rate. It enhances immune function and lowers levels of the stress hormones cortisol and norepinephrine.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Can I Expect?
You will be in a warm, private room and your massage will be given to you on a professional masseuse's table with soft music playing to relax the mood. Your therapist will ask you general questions. The therapist will leave the room while you undress and relax on the table, covering yourself with a fresh sheet. You are covered at all times except for the area being worked on. The therapist uses light oil to allow the muscles to be worked without causing friction.
Who Will Give My Massage?
Your massage will be given by a CMT (Certified Massage Therapist) who has received many hours of training in a variety of massage techniques.
How Long Will My Massage Last?
Your massage will take between 45 minutes and 1 hour 15 minutes depending on the amount of time you decide upon; this includes dressing and undressing times.