The Value of Massage

If you are anything like me, you will love a good massage. When you are tired and rundown, and feeling lacklustre, a good massage can relax you and help you to manage your stress and anxiety levels. A good massage practitioner will know what you need and will be attuned to your body.

So, why is massage so effective and what oils can you use to maximise the impact and effect and help you with muscular cramping, tiredness and injury or lethargy?

Types of Massage

Massage is the intentional and constructive “manipulation of superficial and deeper layers of muscle and connective tissue to enhance function, aid in the healing process and promote wellbeing. It can ease tension and also reduce pain and can also be incorporated into physical therapy as part of a treatment plan.”[1]

There are numerous types of massage all of which have their place in healing and alternative therapies practices. Some of these include:

  • Back massage – works on muscles and ligaments of the back
  • Hot stone massage – heated stones are used to loosen knots and balance energy
  • Pregnancy massage – specifically used to increase comfort, reduce swelling and fluid associated with pregnancy
  • Swedish massage – standard massage using oil and the kneading, circular motion of the hands to loosen superficial muscle layers
  • Aromatherapy massage – standard massage with the specific use of selected scented oils/essential oils to facilitate relaxation, de-stressing, rebalancing and emotional and psychological realignments
  • Deep tissue massage – focuses on the inner or deeper muscle layers with a cross grain manipulation of the muscles using friction and mush slower techniques
  • Shiatsu – Japanese massage technique utilising pressure from the fingers. Uses rhythm and focuses on the pressure points/meridians
  • Thai massage – a more active and energised form of massage. Can also incorporate extensive stretching, motion and compression
  • Reflexology (massage for the feet and their pressure points)

Various natural products in the form of massage kits can also be used with massage. Massage oils containing macadamia or lemon myrtle can revitalise and freshen the body and the muscles and work can also enervate the body because of aroma-therapeutic properties.

Tiger Balm ointment is also a helpful addition to the massage process because of its ability to help loosen painful and tightly knotted areas.

Massage is also particularly helpful for arthritis and fibromyalgia sufferers and can also be used as part of a treatment plan for osteoarthritis, muscular injuries, ligament problems, stress and tenstion relief and neck, head and shoulder problems.

Most of all, ask your natural therapies specialist to help you find a good massage therapist. Incorporate massage into your life and utilise it as a helpful healing strategy in times of emotional stress, anxiety or physical ill health.

Have a great day.