Massage therapy is a great way to combat the stress, pollution, fatigue and everyday problems that are increasingly affecting our bodies.
Indeed, the balance of the body, the relaxation of the muscles, and the relief of physical pains and psychological traumas are factors to be taken into account to have good health.
This is why massages have become a soft and natural alternative to help us fill up with energy and find harmony between the body and the spirit.
The benefits of massage therapy include: pain relief, muscle relaxation, tension reduction, toxin and fat evacuation, improved sleep, toned body, softer skin, and improved circulation. Professional guidance is advised for full-body massages while self-massage is possible for ears, hands, and feet.
Read on for more information on choosing the right massage for your needs.
Table of Contents
What is massage therapy?
Massage therapy is a natural therapeutic technique based on the art of touch. It is an alternative to modern medicine. Its objective is to treat many ailments and contribute to healing certain diseases.
Massages act on our body and offer well-being and relaxation to relieve pain and improve organ function. Moreover, it is also a great way to release stress, tension and anxiety from our minds.
You can receive massages on the whole body. Indeed, from head to toe, each area has its own specificities and virtues.
It is recommended to perform a full body massage to get the full benefits of massage therapy.
This natural and traditional therapy consists of applying precise and rhythmic hand movements to different parts of the body.
What happens during a massage session?
Several massage techniques exist in massage therapy. They are usually performed on a person lying on a massage table or mat.
The choice of massage must be in harmony with the areas to be treated and the expected results for it to be beneficial and effective.
The massage therapist uses massage products such as oil or massage creams during a session. These products contribute to the effectiveness of the gestures and bring complementary virtues to the treatment.
The use of accessories is also important during a massage session.
In fact, each massage therapy session will always begin with a conditioning of the person being massaged, meaning that a moment of relaxation is reserved at the beginning and end.
In addition, it is not necessary to undress completely during a massage even though it is more comfortable and convenient for the massage therapist.
The duration of a session varies according to the area to be treated and the massage applied.
Benefits of massage therapy
Whether it’s to shape your figure, reduce muscle tension or just enjoy a moment of relaxation, all massages help to improve your health and sometimes fight against serious illnesses.
Therapeutic, anti-cellulite, lymphatic drainage, or relaxation massage bring health and comfort.
The benefits of a session can act on two levels: the physical benefits and the psychological benefits.
The massage allows to take care of the body. The different techniques applied contribute to obtaining a better silhouette and curves. A massage also acts on the skin and helps treat certain skin imperfections.
Among the many benefits of massages on the body, we can mention:
- Alleviation of pain in the back, neck, head, feet and sciatic nerve
- Relief of lower back pain
- Reduction of tension and relaxation of muscles
- The evacuation of toxins and fats will have an impact on the reduction of cellulite
- Related post: Does anti-cellulite massage work and why is that?
- Improvement in your sleep, chases away fatigue and improves the circulation of energy
- A toned body
- And finally, a softening of the skin.
Massage helps prevent illness and can even form part of cancer treatment. It is also an aid in the treatment of asthma.
It also acts on constipation by improving digestion and allowing better blood and lymphatic circulation.
A massage session can also help ease the delivery process. This is why different massage techniques are taught during the preparation courses.
Massage positively affects the mind, attention, and awareness of emotions.
A massage re-energizes the patient by:
- bringing about a state of total well-being,
- giving relaxation and a good mood, and by
- helping to fight against stress, anxiety and depression.
Even though massage therapy is synonymous with benefits, certain precautions must be taken to enjoy it safely.
For example, it is not recommended to have a massage if you have a fever. It is wise to systematically check your heart rate and blood pressure before and after each session.
Also, avoid massaging areas of the body that have a wound or other form of infection or bruising.
It is essential to call on a recognized professional because a poorly performed massage can aggravate the problems already present, if any.
Tip: Simple self-massage of the ears, hands, and feet is possible to do yourself though. Read more about this in our other article How to perform a self-massage: Oil tips and best techniques
The body is a precious tool
The main working tool for massage is the hands, but it should come as no surprise that a massage therapist can also sometimes uses his or her feet, knees or elbows.
The massage is practiced on all parts of the body, from head to toe. Each massage focuses on its preferred areas. The person being massaged can also opt for a partial massage:
- For the skin
- Targeting muscles
- Focusing on ligaments and tendons
- And other strategic points of the body.
However, a full-body massage is the best way to enjoy total relaxation.
Massage therapy: Conclusion
Today, it is possible to relieve pain, harmonize body and mind, relax or activate the circulation through a massage session.
It is possible to focus on just one part of the body to be massaged but a full body massage is always the best way to relax completely.
If you too need a moment away from the stress of everyday life, or simply a moment to make yourself feel good, do not hesitate to get a massage.
Massage therapy offers many benefits for both the body and the mind.