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What is Massage Therapy?
Massage therapy is a manual soft tissue mobilization performed on various parts of the body and can have different effects depending on the type of massage you receive. The benefits of massage therapy include relaxation and decreased stress, improved circulation, lower blood pressure, decreased muscular tension and increase in joint and muscle flexibility, while promoting faster healing times.
Massage can help improve posture and concentration as well as reduce anxiety and depression and it also helps promote better sleep. Massage therapy is also very beneficial for athletes to help prepare for and recover from hard workouts or events.
Different types of massages
- Myofascial Release is a slow, gentle form of massage that works on the fascia under the skin and the outer layers of the muscle to relieve restrictions and decrease overall soreness and tension.
- Swedish Massage is a gentle, relaxing massage with long strokes generally used to improve relaxation, sleep and circulation as well as lower blood pressure and decrease stress.
- Deep Tissue Massage uses firmer pressure to decrease muscular tension, increase joint and muscle flexibility, promote faster healing times and help athletes pre and post workout.
- Sports Massage employs a combination of techniques to relieve muscle tension, decrease muscle soreness and enhance performance. Sports massage can be targeted to specific areas of the body that are more painful or causing issues with workouts or performance.
- Trigger Point Release is point-specific for muscular adhesions and helps relieve pain and point-specific hypersensitivity and referred pain as well as increase muscle flexibility and strength and can be used throughout the session as the therapist sees fit.
What to expect:
During the first session, your therapist will ask you a series of question to learn about your health background, understand what your goals are for the session as well as make sure there aren’t any contraindications for massage.
Once the therapist enters the room he or she will perform the massage as previously discussed, the pressure can be adjusted as needed as indicated by you to your therapist. You will be properly draped throughout the massage with only the body area being worked on exposed. Once the session is complete, the therapist will leave the room and you will get dressed and exit the room at your leisure. It is encouraged to drink plenty of water after the session to flush the system of the toxins removed from the musculature during the massage.
Massage is sometimes considered a frivolous, luxurious treat, but the benefits far outweigh the cost and should be a part of everyone’s health and wellness plan.
Kostopoulos, D., & Kostopoulos, K. (2001). Pathogenesis of Myofascial Trigger Points. In The Manual of Trigger Point and Myofascial Therapy (p. 233). Thorofare: SLACK Incorporated.