Reflexology Massage Therapy
What is a Deep Tissue Massage: A deep tissue massage is a type of massage therapy that focuses on realigning deeper layers of muscles and connective tissues. Deep tissue is especially helpful for chronically tense and contracted areas such as stiff necks, lower back tension, shoulders tension, and painful areas throughout the body related to tension. Some of the same strokes are used as a classic Swedish massage however, the movement is slower and the deeper pressure is applied in concentrated areas of tension and pain.
How Does Deep Tissue Massage Work: When there is chronic muscle tension or a past injury, there are usually adhesion's (bands of painful, rigid tissue) in muscles, tendons, and ligaments. Adhesion's can block circulation and cause pain, limited movement, and inflammation. Deep tissue massage works by physically breaking down these adhesion's to relieve pain and restore normal movement. To break down the adhesion's, the massage professional often uses direct deep pressure or friction that is applied across the grain of the muscle tissues.
Will Deep Tissue Massage Hurt: At certain points during a deep tissue massage it is possible to experience some discomfort and pain. If at any time you feel discomfort and/or pain beyond a "hurt so good" it is important to communicate with the massage professional so he/she can readjust their pressure and/or make other adjustments.
There could be some muscular soreness after receiving a deep tissue massage, it however should subside within a day or two.
Benefits of a Deep Tissue Massage: Unlike a classic Swedish massage, which is used for relaxation, deep tissue massage can help people benefit with day to day stress related health issues to chronic health related issues. The following, are some examples of the many health benefits from receiving a deep tissue massage.
- Relieves Stress
- Encourages Relaxation
- Over All Relaxes Muscle & Connective Tissues
- Improves Flexibility & Range of Motion
- Helps with Limited Mobility
- Lowers Blood Pressure
- Rehabilitates Injured Muscles from Injuries (whiplash, falls, sports injury)
- Helps with Repetitive Strain Injuries (carpal tunnel syndrome)
- Helps with Postural Problems
- Helps Manage Pain
- Relieves Chronic Pain
- Relieves Osteoarthritis Pain
- Relieves Fibromyalgia Pain
- Relieves Over All Muscle Tension & Spasms
Consultation: Prior to the start of any massage treatment, massage professionals will have each client complete a health history form which inquires about any history of previous health issues and physical injuries. The main purpose of this is so the massage professional can take special care to prevent further damage and assist in the healing process to muscular tissues surrounding any injured areas.
The massage professional will instruct each client how to lie on the table (face up or face down depending on the preference of the professional). By law, all clients receiving services by a licensed professional must be properly draped (underneath a sheet, blanket, and/or towel) during all massage therapy sessions. The massage professional will leave the room to wash their hands when their clients undresses/dresses. Professionals will knock or ask to re-enter the room.
During a massage you are generally nude or in undergarments underneath a sheet, blanket, and/or towel. The massage professional uncovers only the part of the body he/she is working on.
What to Expect During the Massage: Massage therapists may use fingertips, knuckles, hands, elbows, and forearms during the deep tissue massage. You may be asked to breathe deeply as the massage professional works on certain tense areas. It is very important to communicate with your massage professional on pressure comfort. The massage should never go beyond a "hurt so good".
What Should You Do After a Deep Tissue Massage: Professionals encourage their clients to drink plenty of water after the deep tissue massage to flush metabolic waste from their tissues. Massage has a detoxifying effect on the body. It is important to avoid caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol for the next 24 hours.
Additional Tip: Don't eat a heavy meal before a massage.
Precautions: Massage is not recommended for certain people: infectious skin disease, rash, or open wounds; immediately after surgery; immediately after chemotherapy or radiation, unless recommended by your doctor; people with osteoporosis should consult their doctor before getting a massage; prone to blood clots, there are risks 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 professional who is properly trained and certified in pregnancy massage. Massage should not be done directly over bruises, inflamed skin, unhealed wounds, tumors, abdominal hernia, or areas of recent fractures.
Study: According to the August 2005 issue of Consumer Reports magazine, 34,000 people ranked deep tissue massage more effective in relieving osteoarthritis pain than physical therapy, exercise, prescription medications, chiropractic, acupuncture, diet, glucosamine and over-the-counter drugs. Deep tissue massage also received a top ranking for fibromyalgia pain. People often notice improved range of motion immediately after a deep tissue massage.
Another study, in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, found that the average persons blood pressure had fallen after a single 45 to 60 minute deep tissue massage. Additionally, a 2010 meta-analysis in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry found that massage modalities like deep tissue, reduce stress, hormone levels, and heart rate, while boosting mood and relaxation, by triggering the release of oxytocin and serotonin.
The genuine reflexology is the application of pressure onto particular areas of the soles of the feet. A reflex action in another part of the body is stimulated by the manipulation of each specific area. Unlike other massages that use thumbs, palms, hands, elbow, knee and foot, foot reflexology massage uses hands, fingers and a wood stick with cream and oil.
According to Chinese medicine, the sensory nerves of the internal organs that spread throughout the body are mainly gathered around the soles of the feet.
Therefore, the massage is effective in stimulating the functions of the internal organs. Another advantage of this therapy is that there is no risk. Expert masseurs will deal with the critical points on the feet with utmost care. The pain felt there will disappear when the masseur finishes the process.
The Benefits of Foot Reflexology Massage
It can relieve pain and stiffness caused by too much exercising or using muscle for too long.
It can help prevent and cure many symptoms such as headache, stress, asthma, constipation, sinusitis and migraine.
The blood circulation system will be boosted.
The body's function will be naturally turned into its homeostasis.
The massage must be done with accuracy to avoid wrong reflection which will cause muscle infection.
One should not receive a massage until at least one hour after a meal.
After receiving a massage, one is required to drink water to eliminate toxin and lactic acids developed during the massage process.
Pregnant women, menstruating women and people who are bleeding either internally and externally are not allowed to receive foot reflexology massage.
Both masseur and client are prohibited from washing hair, hands, feet or taking a bath within one hour of foot reflexology massage in order to prevent the body's elements from the effect of coldness.
Foot reflexology massage can be given every day but the total duration of both feet in a day should not exceed 45 minutes. However, only ten minutes is allowed for patients who used to suffer from heart attack.
The Practice of Foot Reflexology Massage
Not all foot massage is reflexology, even though some non-reflex varieties can be a very rejuvenating experience, and help boost the energy circulation.