Swedish massage is the what most of us think about when we hear the word massage. It is the most commonly requested type of massage today. The purpose of Swedish massage is to relax the entire body, but it also has a number of other health benefits. Swedish massage improves blood circulation, increases the level of oxygen in the blood, helps the body removes toxins, improves flexibility, eases tension and helps with pain management. This is accomplished by using a variety of techniques, primarily rubbing the muscles with long gliding strokes in the direction of blood returning to the heart. Other techniques used include kneading a muscle, cross-fiber friction to break up muscle knots (adhesions), and stretching.
Deep Tissue Massage:
Deep Tissue Massage focuses on the deeper layers of muscle tissue. It is designed to reach the deep sections of thick muscles, specifically the individual muscle fibers. Using deep muscle compression and friction along the grain of the muscle, the purpose of Deep Tissue Massage is to unstick the fibers of the muscles and release both toxins and deeply held tension points. Specific hand positions and strokes are used to respond to various tissues while breath and movement techniques are employed to release muscular congestion. It helps to loosen muscle tissues, release toxins from muscles and get blood and oxygen circulating properly. It is both corrective and therapeutic. It is beneficial for many physical problems, including sports injuries and chronic pain. Because it works very deeply, emotional issues can also be addressed, when these have been stored in the body. Deep Tissue Massage usually focuses on specific areas and may cause some soreness during or after the session. If the massage is done correctly however, you should feel better within a day or two. Water helps to eliminate toxins from the body so it is important to drink plenty of water after a Deep Tissue Massage to help this process along.
Hot Stone Massage:
Hot stone massage is a specialty massage where smooth, heated stones are used as an extension of the therapists own hands. The heat can be both deeply relaxing and help warm up tight muscles so the therapist can work more deeply, more quickly. The stones themselves are usually basalt, a black volcanic rock that absorbs and retains heat well, and have been smoothed by natural forces in the river or sea. First, the therapist warms up the body with traditional Swedish massage, then massages you while holding heated stones. This continues throughout the duration of the massage with the therapist using various size stones on different muscles in the body.
Prenatal massage, also known as pregnancy massage, promotes relaxation, soothes nerves, and relieves strained back and leg muscles in expectant mothers. Prenatal massage is especially beneficial in the second and third trimesters, when the extra weight in your belly puts a strain on your back. Prenatal massage provides relaxation by relieving stress on joints. It eases neck and back pain, helps you to keep good posture and relaxes and provides flexibility to birthing muscles. Prenatal massage aids the circulatory and lymphatic systems, which keeps blood flowing to both the mother and the baby. It stimulates different glands in the body, which help to stabilize hormone levels, and relieves nervous tension throughout the body. And the nurturing touch during pregnancy massage promotes relaxation and provides emotional support.
Don't stop getting massage once the baby comes along. Post-partum massage (also called post-natal massage) can help restore your body to its pre-pregnancy condition. It helps to realign your body weight, and tones the over-stretched skin over the belly. It also relieves muscle tension and stress from mothering duties.
Event Chair Massage:
Do you have a corporate or family event coming up? Or perhaps a girl’s spa day at home? I am always available for your events with my massage chair. Chair massage is a fun way to help clients, employees, family and friends enjoy the benefits of massage. Think of me the next time you have a corporate meeting where I can help ease the stress of the day, or a family event like a wedding or reunion to add some extra relaxation to your friends and family. Massage chairs are lightweight and portable so it is easy to get to almost any event you have in mind.
Cupping therapy is an ancient form of alternative medicine in which a therapist puts special cups on your skin for a few minutes to create suction. People get it for many purposes, including to help with pain, inflammation, blood flow, relaxation and well-being, and as a type of deep-tissue massage.
The cups may be made of: Glass, Bamboo, Earthenware, Silicone
Cupping therapy might be trendy now, but it’s not new. It dates back to ancient Egyptian, Chinese, and Middle Eastern cultures. One of the oldest medical textbooks in the world, the Ebers Papyrus, describes how the ancient Egyptians used cupping therapy in 1,550 B.C.
During fire cupping, your therapist will put a flammable substance such as alcohol, herbs, or paper in a cup and set it on fire. As the fire goes out, he puts the cup upside down on your skin.
As the air inside the cup cools, it creates a vacuum. This causes your skin to rise and redden as your blood vessels expand. The cup is generally left in place for up to 3 minutes.
A more modern version of cupping uses a rubber pump instead of fire to create the vacuum inside the cup. Sometimes therapists use silicone cups, which they can move from place to place on your skin for a massage-like effect.
You might get 3-5 cups in your first session. Or you might just try one to see how it goes. It’s rare to get more than 5-7 cups, the British Cupping Society notes.
What Does the Research Show?
There haven’t been many scientific studies on cupping.
One report, published in 2015 in the Journal of Traditional and Complementary Medicine, notes that it could help with acne, herpes zoster, and pain management.
That’s similar to the findings from a 2012 report, published in PLoS One. Australian and Chinese researchers reviewed 135 studies on cupping. They concluded that cupping therapy may be effective when people also get other treatments, like acupuncture or medications, for various diseases and conditions, such as:
Herpes zoster, Acne, Facial paralysis, Cervical spondylosis
But those researchers noted many of the studies they reviewed could have been biased and that better studies are needed.
The British Cupping Society says that cupping therapy is used to treat:
Blood disorders such as anemia and hemophilia, Rheumatic diseases such as arthritis and fibromyalgia, Fertility and gynecological disorders, Skin problems such as eczema and acne, High blood pressure, Migraines, Anxiety and depression, Bronchial congestion caused by allergies and asthma, Varicose veins
There isn’t research to back all of that up.
Cupping is fairly safe, as long as you go to a trained health professional. But you could have these side effects in the area where the cups touch your skin:
Mild discomfort, Burns, Bruises, Skin infection
What to Ask Your Doctor First
Talk with your doctor before you start cupping or any other type of alternative or complementary medicine. And talk extensively with your cupping therapist, too, before you try it. Ask:
What conditions do they use cupping for?
What is your training?
What is your experience in using it?
Am I already getting the standard treatments for my condition?
Are there reasons I should not get cupping?