Types of Massage

The five main techniques used in Swedish massage — stroking and gliding; kneading; rubbing; tapping or pounding; vibration

The various Swedish massage techniques are designed to improve your circulationsoothe your muscles and make you feel more relaxed.

Swedish massage uses softer strokes on the bonier and more delicate parts of the body, and stronger strokes where there is thicker muscle coverage. This adjustment of pressure makes it an ideal massage for relaxation.

Deep tissue mainly focuses on a specific problem, such as chronic muscle pain, injury rehabilitation. The massage involves applying firm pressure and slow strokes to reach deeper layers of muscle and fascia (the connective tissue surrounding muscles).  Deep tissue is mainly used for chronic aches and pain and contracted areas such as a stiff neck and lower and upper back pain, leg muscle tightness, and sore shoulders.

Benefits

  • Limited mobility 
  • Postural problems
  • Muscle tension 
  • Sciatica
  • Osteoarthritis 

Therapeutic sports massage is a type of massage technique that focuses on treating soft tissue aches, pain and injuries that are associated with recreational activities. Massage can reduce muscle stiffness and improve relaxation by reducing heart rate and blood pressure.

Medical massage therapy’s main focus is realigning a medical need. The techniques used are based around a specific health outcome and techniques vary depending on the individual and condition. It takes a series of timed visits to see results.  Some techniques used are trigger point therapy and myofacial release. 

Unlike the regular massage you are used to, prenatal massages are adapted for the anatomical changes you go through during pregnancy. In a traditional massage, you might spend half the time lying face-down on your stomach (which is uncomfortable with a baby belly) and half the time facing up (a position that puts pressure on a major blood vessel that can disrupt blood flow to your baby and leave you feeling nauseous).

Benefits 

  • Hormone regulation
  • Improvement of nerve pain
  • Reduction of swelling
  • Reduced stress & anxiety
  • Improved circulation
  • Better sleep

Myofacial release involves safe, gentle, and effective techniques such as skin rolling and spreading of the facia and skin with little to no lotion or oil. This helps soften and elongate the fascia that lies over the muscles. Patients who have suffered from surgery, trauma, and/or inflammatory can use myofacial as a therapy.

FAQ

Common questions and answers

Everyone starts off with a brief intake of their health.  Afterward the therapist will begin by asking you general questions to establish what areas you would like worked on, if there are any conditions needing to be addressed, and to determine if massage is appropriate for you. Your massage therapist may perform certain assessments and testing to evaluate your condition and to see if you have any presenting complaints.

It is important to list all health concerns and medications so the therapist can adapt the session to your specific needs without doing any harm. It is also important to list any allergies so the therapist is aware if he/she needs to use a different oil or lotion during the session.

Absolutely not, this is an entirely optional based on your comfort level. 

This depends on the type of massage and the depth of the strokes. A light, relaxing massage that doesn’t probe very deep into the muscles, shouldn’t hurt. With that being said, there is a ‘feels good’ hurt and an ‘ouch, stop it’ hurt. A good massage, even a really deep tissue massage, should always stay in the ‘feels good’ hurt range. You should always let your therapist know if you are experiencing pain beyond that of the normal level.

Sure, if you’d like to talk go right ahead. The important thing to remember is that this treatment is all about you relaxing and enjoying the experience. Many therapists discourage talking in hopes that you will relax, let your mind float free and enter a state of massage bliss.
In many instances, people may feel more relaxed starting off talking, and as the massage progresses, enter quiet states of relaxation.

Honestly, everyone is different and everyone has a unique condition that might be different from someone else. It may take one session or it may take several. You and your therapist will be able to talk more specifically about this after your first session and he/she has had a chance to evaluate your body’s tissues.

Sometimes it happens. Yet, most men avoid massage for fear this will happen to them. Or, they get a massage but are unable to relax because of this fear. But there is no reason to be embarrassed.

Sometimes men get an erection during a non-sexual, therapeutic, full body massage. Touch administered to any part of the body can activate the parasympathetic nervous system, which can result in a partial or complete erection.