Stress and You: Massage By: Dalton garrett

“You’re just one massage away from a good mood”

Massage therapy has been proven to reduce stress levels in the body. It is a natural and safe form of alternative therapy which relaxes your mind and body and gives you a sense of peace

Some of the many benefits:

Improves sleep

Reduces anxiety

Reduces muscle tightness

Increases circulation and organ function

Improves skin texture

Swedish Massage is the most common massage

It stimulates circulation, increases muscle tone, and creates a feeling of balance. A massage therapist will use long strokes, kneading, circular movements, and tapping to help you relax. There are 47 positions and 800 movements possible with a Swedish massage.

There are four basic massage strokes that move in the direction of the heart.

  • Effleurage is a soothing stroke movement used to begin and end a massage. The strokes begin lightly using the palm of the hand moving towards the chest and shoulders. They are repeated several times during the massage to relax the muscles and relieve tension.
  • Petrissage uses a kneading stroke in a slow, pattern-like movement. The hands are used to squeeze the muscles gently to stimulate the skin.
  • Friction uses small circular movements made with the thumb, fingertips, and heel of the hands. It is used to reach deep tissues by rubbing in a back and forth motion.
  • Tapotement strokes include slapping, tapping, and cupping. The body is struck with soft blows alternating between hands, the fingertips can be tapping the body, or the hands can be cupped to perform this stroke. It is used to increase circulation and metabolism.

Other types of Massage for you to choose:

  • Deep Tissue Massage - Includes slow, more forceful strokes to reach deep layers of muscles and tissue to release chronic tension.
  • Sports Massage - Used to help prevent and treat injuries in athletes, to give them greater endurance, muscle strength and better performance.
  • Trigger Point Massage - Applies slow, deep concentrated pressure to trigger points on the body to release the strained muscle and lessen pain

Although there are few risks when done by a licensed therapist, massage is not for everyone. These health conditions might not be suitable for massage therapy, and people should check with their family physician first:

  • Pregnancy
  • Bleeding disorders
  • Fractures
  • Tumors/Cancer

For more information on massage, you can visit these resources:

https://nccih.nih.gov

https://www.amtamassage.org

References

Nancy, D. C. (1998). In touch with the healing powers of massage. Better Nutrition, 60(2), 72-74. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.hacc.edu/docview/194175720?accountid=11302

Ibach, S. (2009, December 28). Studies conclusively show massage therapy reduces stress. Retrieved from http://massageadvancer.com/studies-conclusively-show-massage-therapy-reduces-stress/277

Massage: Get in touch with its many benefits. (2015, December 7). Retrieved March 26, 2017, from http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/stress-management/in-depth/massage/art-20045743

Massage Therapy for Health Purposes. (2015, June). Retrieved from https://nccih.nih.gov/health/massage/massageintroduction.htm

Credits:

Created with images by muha... - "path to relaxation..." • jill111 - "woman happiness sunrise" • tremaestro - "massage therapy candles towels" • sonja_paetow - "wellness massage relaxation" • Zenspa1 - "Beautiful woman receiving hotstone massage at spa" • stevepb - "massage therapy essential oils skincare" • Salvadonica, Chianti, Tuscany - "Massages Salvadonica" • jlggb - "massage-neon-75012" • monicore - "essential oils aromatherapy spa" • Salvadonica, Chianti, Tuscany - "Massages Salvadonica" • jlggb - "massage-neon-75012" • monicore - "essential oils aromatherapy spa" • stevepb - "massage therapy essential oils skincare"

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