Many physicians have been recommending massage therapy for nearly 2,400 years. The medical benefits of friction were first documented in Western culture by the Greek physician Hippocrates around 400 BC. Today, massage therapy is being used as a means of treating painful ailments, decompressing tired and overworked muscles, reducing stress, rehabilitating sports injuries, and promoting general health. This is accomplished by manipulating a client´s soft tissues in order to improve the body´s circulation.
While massage therapy is done for medical benefit, a massage can be given to simply relax or rejuvenate the person being massaged. Massage therapy is practiced by thoroughly trained individuals who provide specialized care with their client´s medical health in mind.
Therapeutic massage can help relieve common physical problems.
• Muscular back pain
• Poor circulation
• Stress and anxiety
• General muscular tension and aches
Massage enhances general health. It helps keep the body and mind functioning optimally.
- Improves immune system functions
- Promotes healthy and vibrant skin
- Relaxes tight muscles
- Improves joint mobility
- Improves circulation
- Encourages general relaxation
Massage therapy used to support your fitness or sports program can help you achieve you performance goals with minimum injury and pain.
- Relieves tired and sore muscles
- Speeds recovery from strenuous physical exertion
- Helps improve flexibility
- Reduces anxiety of athletic competition
Therapeutic massage helps combats the negative effects of aging by keeping body tissue and basic functions in a more youthful state.
- Enhances tissue elasticity and joint flexibility
- Improves blood and lymph circulation
- Promotes healthy and vibrant skin
Especially beneficial for…
- Caregivers-mothers, fathers, teachers, daycare workers, and health care workers of all kinds
- Physical workers-those who stress their bodies in their work or trade
- Desk workers- anyone whose work involves sitting at a desk for long periods of time
- Travelers-for those spending long hours sitting in an automobile, train or airplane
What exactly are the benefits of receiving massage or bodywork treatments? Useful for all of the conditions listed below and more, massage can:
- All eviate 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 flowthe 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 postsurgery adhesions and swelling.
- Reduce spasms and cramping.
- Relax and soften injured, tired, and overused muscles.
- Release endorphinsamino acids that work as the body´s natural painkiller.
- Relieve migraine pain.
A Powerful Ally
There´s no denying the power of bodywork. Regardless of the adjectives we assign to it (pampering, rejuvenating, therapeutic) or the reasons we seek it out (a luxurious treat, stress relief, pain management), massage therapy can be a powerful ally in your healthcare regimen.
Experts estimate that upwards of ninety percent of disease is stress related. And perhaps nothing ages us faster, internally and externally, than high stress. While eliminating anxiety and pressure altogether in this fast-paced world may be idealistic, massage can, without a doubt, help manage stress. This translates into:
- Decreased anxiety.
- Enhanced sleep quality.
- Greater energy.
- Improved concentration.
- Increased circulation.
- Reduced fatigue.
Furthermore, clients often report a sense of perspective and clarity after receiving a massage. The emotional balance bodywork provides can often be just as vital and valuable as the more tangible physical benefits.
In response to massage, specific physiological and chemical changes cascade throughout the body, with profound effects. Research shows that with massage:
- Arthritis sufferers note fewer aches and less stiffness and pain.
- Asthmatic children show better pulmonary function and increased peak air flow.
- Burn injury patients report reduced pain,
itching, and anxiety.
- High blood pressure patients demonstrate lower diastolic blood pressure, anxiety, and stress hormones.
- Premenstrual syndrome sufferers have decreased water retention and cramping.
- Preterm infants have improved weight gain.
Research continues to show the enormous benefits of touchwhich range from treating chronic diseases, neurological disorders, and injuries, to alleviating the tensions of modern lifestyles. Consequently, the medical community is actively embracing bodywork, and massage is becoming an integral part of hospice care and neonatal intensive care units. Many hospitals are also incorporating on-site massage practitioners and even spas to treat postsurgery or pain patients as part of the recovery process.
Increase the Benefits with Frequent Visits
Getting a massage can do you a world of good. And getting massage frequently can do even more. This is the beauty of bodywork. Taking part in this form of regularly scheduled self-care can play a huge part in how healthy you´ll be and how youthful you´ll remain with each passing year. Budgeting time and money for bodywork at consistent intervals is truly an investment in your health. And remember: just because massage feels like a pampering treat doesn´t mean it is any less therapeutic. Consider massage appointments a necessary piece of your health and wellness plan, and work with your practitioner to establish a treatment schedule that best meets your needs.