Massage Therapy is perhaps one of the oldest healing traditions. Many ancient peoples – including the Greeks, Egyptians, Chinese and Indians have used it as a way of treating a variety of ailments.
Massage therapy is the practice of kneading a person’s muscles and soft tissue in order to improve their wellbeing. The term ‘massage therapy’ is used to describe a wide variety of techniques that can be used as physical treatment.
Massage for treatment of some disorders
Research indicates that massage therapy is effective in managing:
- subacute/chronic low back pain
- delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS)
- soft tissue injuries – sprains and strains
- high blood pressure
Benefits of massage
Massage therapy results in a feeling of deep relaxation and calm. This occurs because massage prompts the release of brain chemicals that produce feelings of well-being. As a result, levels of stress hormones, such as adrenalin and cortisol, are also reduced. Studies indicate that high levels of stress hormones impair the immune system.
Some of the physical benefits of massage therapy include:
- reduced muscle tension
- improved circulation
- stimulation of the lymphatic system
- reduction of stress hormones
- increased joint mobility and flexibility
- improved skin tone
- improved recovery of soft tissue injuries
- heightened mental alertness
- reduced anxiety and depression.
Different types of massage
The different types of massage therapy available at Woden Wellness Centre include:
- Remedial Massage – Firstly, involves the assessment and treatment of soft tissue pain and injury that affects the movement of joints and muscles. Secondly, remedial massage is applied to restore, as well as maintain the health and function of the soft tissue structures. These include muscles, tendons, ligaments and also the fascia of the body.
- Therapeutic – is another name for remedial massage.
- Lymphatic drainage – is a gentle whole-body treatment which promotes the movement and flushing of the lymph system of the body. As a result, this treatment increases blood flow and reduces swelling within the tissue. Lymphatic drainage is particularly helpful for excessive fluid build-up in legs, feet and arms.
- Massage for Babies and Children – can help to treat constipation, colic and also sleeping problems. Studies have found that regular massage helps premature babies gain weight at a faster rate.
- Pregnancy Massage – a gentle treatment which is often used to treat backspin, hip pain and sciatica that can occur during the second and third trimester of pregnancy. Massage therapy is also a natural way to relax the body throughout the stages of pregnancy. Massage is, however, not recommended in the first trimester.
- Sports – this is an application of massage either before or after sports performance. The type of treatment applied depends on the competition, sports injury or stage of training the competitor is in. Sports massage is a blend of techniques that aim to enhance performance as well as help overworked muscles recover quickly.