Swedish Relaxation Massage
What is a Swedish Massage?
The term "Swedish Massage" refers to a variety of techniques specifically designed to relax muscles by applying pressure to them against deeper muscles and bones, and rubbing in the same direction as the flow of blood returning to the heart.
Swedish massage was developed in the 1700's by a Swedish doctor named Per Henrik Ling.
Purpose of Swedish Massage?
The main purpose of Swedish massage is to increase the oxygen flow in the blood and release toxins from the muscles.
Swedish massage shortens recovery time from muscular strain by flushing the tissues of lactic acid, uric acid, and other metabolic wastes. It increases circulation without increasing heart load. It stretches the ligaments and tendons keeping them supple and pliable. Swedish massage also stimulates the skin and nervous system and soothes the nerves themselves at the same time. It reduces stress, both emotional and physical, and is suggested in a regular program for stress management. It also has many specific medical uses.
Swedish Massage Techniques?
Swedish massage techniques include: long strokes, kneading, friction, tapping, percussion, vibration, effleurage, and shaking motions. The usually sequence of techniques are:
Benefits of Swedish Massage?
Swedish massage feels good, is relaxing and invigorating. It affects the nerves, muscles, glands, and circulation, while promoting health and well being.
Trigger Point Therapy
What is Trigger Point Therapy?
Trigger point therapy is a bodywork technique that involves the applying of pressure to tender muscle tissue in order to relieve pain and dysfunction in other parts of the body. Sometimes massage and trigger point therapy are performed together.
Trigger point therapy is also called myofascial trigger point therapy. It was developed by Dr. Janet Travell in the United States in the 1940s.
What are Trigger Points?
Trigger points are areas of tenderness in a muscle. There are two basic types of trigger points: active and latent.
Active trigger points cause muscular pain and will refer pain and tenderness to another area of the body when pressure is applied. Latent trigger points only exhibit pain when compressed, they do not refer pain to other areas of the body. Latent trigger points are believed to be one of the causes of stiff joints and restricted range of motion of old age.
Trigger points may be associated with myofascial pain syndromes or fybromyalgia. Trigger points are very common. They are also referred to as muscle knots.
Trigger points differ from acupressure points. Acupressure points are concentrations of energy or blockages of the body's energy pathways. Trigger points are physical phenomena that can be felt by touch.
The pain caused by trigger points may be the biggest cause of disabilityand loss of time in the workplace.
What Causes Trigger Points?
Trigger points have several causes. Some common causes of trigger points are: birth trauma, an injury sustained in a fall or accident, poor posture, or overexertion.
What is the Purpose of Trigger Point Therapy?
The purpose of trigger point therapy is to eliminate pain and to re-educate the muscles into pain-free habits. After several treatments, the swelling and stiffness of neuromuscular pain is reduced, range of motion is increased, tension is relieved, and circulation, flexibility and coordination are improved.
Deep Tissue Massage
What is Deep Tissue Massage?
Deep Tissue Massage is a massage technique that focuses on the deeper layers of muscle tissue. It aims to release the chronic patterns of tension in the body through slow strokes and deep finger pressure on the contracted areas, either following or going across the fiber's of the muscles, tendons and fascia.
Deep tissue massage is used to release chronic muscle tension through slower strokes and more direct deep pressure or friction applied across the grain of the muscles not with the grain. Deep tissue massage helps to break up and eliminate scar tissue. Deep tissue massage usually focuses on more specific areas and may cause some soreness during or right after the massage. However, if the massage is done correctly you should feel better than ever within a day or two.
Why get a Deep Tissue Massage?
It feels good and it is beneficial to your health. When muscles are stressed they block oxygen and nutrients, leading to inflammation that builds up toxins in the muscle tissue. A deep-tissue massage helps loosen muscle tissues, release toxins from muscles and get blood and oxygen circulating properly. Because many toxins are released, it's important to drink plenty of water after a deep-tissue session to help eliminate these toxins from the body.
What is the purpose of Deep Tissue Massage?
The purpose is to "unstick" the fibers of a muscle while releasing deeply-held patterns of tension, removing toxins, while relaxing and soothing the muscle. It is both corrective and therapeutic.
What is Neuromuscular Therapy?
NMT is a thorough program of recovery from acute and chronic pain syndromes which utilizes specific massage therapy, flexibility stretching, and home care to eliminate the causes of most neuromuscular pain patterns. This specific and scientific approach to muscular pain relief will help to bring about balance between the musculoskeletal system and the nervous system. NMT enhances the function of joints, muscles and biomechanics (movement) and it releases endorphins, the body's own natural pain killers. It can be part of a comprehensive program, complementing all other health care modalities.
Neuromuscular Therapy examines six physiological factors
that may create or intensify pain patterns.
These six factors are:
Trigger points - trigger points are highly irritable points in the nervous system.
Nerve entrapment/compression - when a nerve gets pressed constantly between the surrounding structures, it can lead to an acute kind of chronic pain.
Postural distortions - Postural distortions result in underdevelopment of the supporting muscles and thereby lead to their weakening.
Nutrition - Lack of adequate nutrition to the cells leads to an over all weakening of the entire system.
Ischemia - In a condition such as Ischemia, the cells and tissues get a reduced blood supply and as a result are under-nourished.
Stress - Stress plays havoc with the functioning of the nervous and musculoskeletal system.
Why are the benefits of Neuromuscular Therapy?
Neuromuscular therapy is used to treat conditions such as chronic pain, sciatica, rotator cuff dysfunction, carpal tunnel syndrome, temporomandibular joint dysfunction and migraines. It is also used in the treatment of some physical and sexual abuse-related traumas. Neuromuscular therapy is also the most effective type of massage therapy for lower back pain.
Neuromuscular therapy is also used to locate and release spasms and hyper contractions in the tissue. It aids the healing process for injured tissue, assists in venous and lymphatic flow, restores postural alignment, and imparts flexibility to the tissues. How many sessions will it take before I feel better?
Although the factors that affect treatment outcomes are many, it is likely you'll know after two or three sessions of NMT whether or not this treatment approach can help you. The duration of treatment for a specific soft-tissue pain syndrome will be determined by a host of interacting factors. When and how did the pain/injury occur? Where diagnostic tests performed and what were the results? Is there some problem with your mattress or pillow or the number of hours you spend driving? What, if any, environmental or work-station factors cause or contribute to the pain syndrome? Are appropriate corrective stretching and strengthening exercises employed routinely to assist in the rehabilitation/prevention process? Unless your pain syndrome was caused by an accident or overt trauma, it is highly likely that certain "lifestyle" adjustment need to be made in one or more of the areas mentioned above. Your therapist will assist you in assessing the most likely contributors to your pain syndrome, and help you make the changes necessary to get you out of pain.
How many sessions will it take before I feel better?
*NEW* Hot Stone Therapy *NEW*
How Does Hot Stone Massage Work?
The hot stones are usually made of basalt, a type of rock that is rich in iron, so they retain heat. River rocks are normally used because they are so smooth - they have been smoothed over time by the river's current.
The stones are immersed in water and heated in an electric heating device until they are within a certain temperature range. The stones may be placed at specific points on the back, in the palms of the hand, or between the toes.
The heat warms and relaxes the muscles, which allows the therapist to apply deeper pressure, if desired.
The warmth of the hot stones improves circulation and calms the nervous system.
Some massage therapists place stones on points that are thought to be energy centers of the body to rebalance the body and mind.
Why Do People Get Hot Stone Massage?
Many people find the warmth of the hot stones to be comforting and get it for relaxation.
Hot stone massage is suited to people who tend to feel chilly or who have cold feet. It's also suited for people who have muscle tension but prefer a lighter massage. The heat relaxes muscles, allowing the therapist to work the muscles without using deep pressure.
People also get hot stone massage for a variety of health conditions:
· Back pain and aches
· Poor circulation
· Osteoarthritis and arthritis pain
· Stress, anxiety and tension
How Do the Hot Stones Feel?
The hot stones are never rough. They are always flat and smooth. The hot stones used on the back are about the size of a large egg, only flat.
The stones are heated in an electrical heating unit that either provides a temperature reading or has an adjustable thermostat control.
The massage therapist always holds the stones first before touching them to your body, which ensures that the temperature will not be too hot. Everyone, however, has their own comfort range. Be sure to speak up if the stones are too hot for you.
Cool marble stones are occasionally used during a treatment, particularly if there is inflammation.
What Can I Expect During my Hot Stone Massage?
The massage therapist often begins by applying oil to the body, which allows the hot stones to glide smoothly along the muscles. You are lying face down, and the massage therapist often then uses the hot stones to massage the back.
After the hot stones have relaxed the muscles, the massage therapist may put down the stones and use his or her hands to directly massage the skin.
The hot stones may then be placed back on to the body and left for a short period of time.
You are then asked to turn over onto your back. The massage therapist may place small hot stones between your toes or in the palm of your hand and repeats the sequence.
A typical hot stone massage is between 60 and 90 minutes long and ranges between $50 and $190.
Massage is not recommended for certain people:
· People with infectious skin disease, rash, or open wounds
· Immediately after surgery
· Immediately after chemotherapy or radiation, unless recommended by your doctor
· People prone to blood clots. There is a risk of blood clots being dislodged. If you have heart disease, check with your doctor before having a massage
· Pregnant women should check with their doctor first if they are considering getting a massage. Massage in pregnant women should be done by massage therapists who are certified in pregnancy massage.
Massage should not be done directly over bruises, inflamed skin, unhealed wounds, tumors, abdominal hernia, or areas of recent fractures.
What is Reflexology Massage?
Reflexology is a gentle form of therapeutic treatment applied to the feet and sometimes to the hands. It evolved around 1913 from the work of Dr. William H. Fitzgerald, an ear, nose and throat surgeon in the United States. Reflexology is considered to be a holistic healing technique that aims to treat the individual as a whole, in order to induce a state of balance and harmony in body, mind and spirit.
Reflexology is based on the belief that there are reflex areas on the feet (and hands) corresponding to all the parts of the body including major organs. It is believed that applying pressure to specific areas on the feet, hands and ears can affect internal organs and body systems, and therefore promote good health.
The therapist stimulates and works these organs and systems through the reflexes areas on the hands and feet, applying pressure to the feet with thumb and fingers. Pressure is applied to clear out congestion and restore normal functioning and health.
Reflexology was brought to America in the early 1900's by Chinese immigrants.
A treatment usually lasts between 40 minutes and 1 hour.
Benefits of Reflexology?
Reflexology has many benefits. It feels good. It is pleasant and soothing, and it relaxes the body. Each person responds to a reflexology in a unique way and on occasions may experience a variety of short term reactions, for example, extreme relaxation, tiredness, lethargy or tearfulness. Reflexology is not a ‘cure-all’. However, it does help releive pain associated with migraine, sinus problems, breathing disorders, digestive problems, circulatory problems, back problems, tension and stress.
What is Prenatal Massage?
Prenatal massage shares many of the goals of regular massage — to relax tense muscles, ease sore spots, improve circulation and mobility, and just make you feel good. But it's also tailored specifically to the needs of pregnant women and their changing bodies, and therapists who are trained in prenatal massage adjust their techniques accordingly.
What are the benifits of prenatal massage?
When should I not get a prenatal massage?
There are a few situations in which massage may be risky. For example, you'll need to avoid massage in an area where you have a blood clot or a bone fracture.
You'd also want to avoid massage on any area where you have a skin injury or condition that could be aggravated by rubbing, including burns, open wounds, skin infections, or eczema. Some people may have allergic reactions to oils used by massage therapists.
Chair Massage is a method of muscle manipulation, pressure point therapy and energy balancing applied to specific points throughout the body while the client is comfortably seated in a chair specifically designed for this purpose.
What makes chair massage different from table massages?
Businesses know that having healthy employees translates into increased competitiveness in the marketplace. Workers that are healthy and well contribute to a company’s productivity — and that means profits.
Many employers are noting the positive effects of an on-site massage program as part of their wellness program. Moreover, they have found massage to be a cost-effective benefit, the cost of which employees are willing to share.
With Touch Of Serenity's on-site chair massage, I allow your company to be on the cutting edge of bringing the benefits of massage to the workplace.
On-site massage is becoming one of the fastest growing employee wellness benefits that companies offer. It is a safe, convenient, cost-effective program that boosts employee morale and provides valuable health benefits. On-site chair massage is available to all sizes and types of businesses from small offices to large corporations.
On-site massage does not require a private room and can be offered at the workstation, in a conference or work room. The massage therapist may use a special chair, tabletop device or a chair available in the office. Selection is dependent upon the client’s comfort and space available in the environment.
The length of a massage session is 10-15 minutes, the length of a typical work break. During the massage, the recipient is seated and fully clothed. No oil is used. Therefore, no change in attire is necessary. The massage therapist uses techniques that focus on the upper part of the body – neck, head, shoulders, back, and arms.
What is Aromatherapy?
Aromatherapy is the use of fragrant substances, called essential oils, distilled from plants to alter mood or improve health. These highly concentrated aromatic substances are either inhaled or applied as oils during massage. There are approximately 40 essential oils commonly used in aromatherapy; among the most popular are lavender, rosemary, eucalyptus, chamomile, marjoram, jasmine, peppermint, lemon, ylang ylang, and geranium.
How is it promoted for use?
Aromatherapy is promoted as a natural way to help patients cope with chronic pain, depression, and stress and produce a feeling of well being. There is some evidence suggesting this may be true. Proponents also claim aromatherapy can help relieve bacterial infections, stimulate the immune system, fight colds, flu and sore throats, improve urine production, increase circulation, and cure cystitis, herpes simplex, acne, headaches, indigestion, PMS, muscle tension, and even cancer. There is no scientific evidence, however, to support these further claims. Fragrances from different oils are promoted to have specific health benefits. For example, lavender oil is promoted to relieve muscular tension, anxiety, and insomnia.
There are two schools of thought as to how aromatherapy may work. Scent receptors in the nose are known to send chemical messages through the olfactory nerve to the brain's limbic region, which influences emotional responses, heart rate, blood pressure, and respiration. Some say these connections explain the effects of essential oilsÂ’ pleasant smells. The effects may partly depend on previous associations (recalled experiences) of the person with a particular scent. Others say the oils are absorbed directly into the system through the skin. Laboratory studies suggest that the oils can affect organ function, although whether this can be useful is not yet clear.
What does it involve?
Aromatherapy is either self-administered or applied by a practitioner. Many aromatherapists in the United States are trained as massage therapists, psychologists, social workers, or chiropractors and use the oils as part of their practices.
The essential oils, which are used one at a time or in combination, may be inhaled or applied to the skin. For inhalation, a few drops of the essential oil are placed in steaming water, atomizers, or humidifiers that are used to spread the steam/oil combination throughout the room. Sometimes the oils are placed in a heatproof dish over a candle or other flame to diffuse the scent.
Essential oils can be applied to the skin during massage, or they can be added to bathwater. For application to the skin, the oils are combined with a carrier, usually vegetable oil. Oils may also be made into salves, creams, and compresses. Some people also apply drops of certain essential oils on their pillows.
What is the history behind it?
Use of aromatic, perfumed oils dates back thousands of years to ancient Egypt, China, and India. In Egypt, such oils were used after bathing and for embalming mummies. Thousands of years ago the Chinese compiled an encyclopedia of information on plants, herbs, and wood. In ancient India, aromatic massage was part of Ayurvedic medicine.
The Greeks and Romans used fragrant oils for both medicinal and cosmetic purposes. However, it was the medieval physician Avicenna who first extracted these oils from plants.
Rene Maurice Gattefosse, a French chemist, originated modern aromatherapy and even the term itself. After burning his hand in a laboratory accident, he used lavender oil to soothe the pain. His hand healed quickly with no scar, and he attributed this outcome to the lavender oil. He published his first thesis on "Aromatherapie" in 1928 and a book under the same title in 1937. Aromatherapy was revived in the 1960s by French homeopaths Dr. and Mme. Maury. In the 1980s, aromatherapy began in the United States in California and is fairly well established in England, France, Switzerland, New Mexico, and New Zealand.
What is the evidence?
There is no scientific evidence that aromatherapy cures or prevents disease; however, a few clinical studies suggest aromatherapy may be a helpful complementary therapy. In Britain, there are reports of the successful use of aromatherapy massage as a complementary treatment for people with cancer to reduce anxiety, depression, tension, and pain. However, some studies show no difference in outcome between massage with aromatherapy oils and massage without them. There are also reports that inhaled peppermint, ginger, and cardamom oil seem to relieve the nausea caused by chemotherapy and radiation. However, these reports have not been scientifically proven.
There is no scientific evidence that aromatherapy is effective in preventing or treating cancer or any other health problems, but it may be used to enhance quality of life. Early clinical trials suggest aromatherapy may have some benefit as a complementary treatment in reducing stress, pain, and depression.