Massage is a holistic treatment that can offer many benefits to the individual receiving it. When a person experiences pain, often the core issue may be poor balance in some part of the person’s body. Over time the body has tightened up and is creating poor alignment and resulting pain. Our human bodies all seek balance.
Hectic, stressed and busy lives often leave the body tense and tight. Or perhaps there is an initial injury or overuse from daily work, or sports or some other event. When these things occur a muscle will end up tightening to support the body part that has been weakened. Over time some muscle or part of the opposite side of the person’s body will tighten to maintain balance in the body. The body is not happy being pulled and pushed in a direction that it not natural for it and over time chronic pain can result, along with poor alignment.
“Massage therapy” is very broad term; there are several different style and techniques that can be employed, all of which depend on a person’s unique needs and the skill set of the massage therapist.
At Natural Health Associates, our therapists offer these tehcniques:
- John F. Barnes Myofascial Release
- Deep Tissue Massage
- Neuromuscular Bodywork
- Prenatal/Pregnancy Massage
- Sport Massage
- Swedish Massage
- Trigger Point Therapy
In addition to those techniques, our therapists are skilled in addressing specific conditions:
- Carpal Tunnel
- Thoracic Outlet
- Low Back Pain
- Sciatica/Piriformis Syndrome
- TMJ (TemporoMandibular Joint Disorder)
- Plantar Fasciitis
- Shin Splints
- Emotional stress/trauma
- Oncology Support
- Geriatric Massage
Instead of working fast and deep this work is very slow and controlled holding positions for three to five minutes. Myofascial Release does not use lotion because in order to perform the technique the therapist needs to be able to sink their hands into your skin and gently push in opposite directions.
Unlike traditional massage where the hands are gliding over the skin, during MFR the therapist is keeping their hands in the same place. Feeling a release from MFR can be as subtle as what feels like a wet spider web pulling apart under your skin or sometimes a mild burn but it creates profound changes in your body that last much longer than traditional massage.
Fascia, most commonly known as connective tissue, wraps around every muscle, nerve, organ, bone, etc in the body. By working with much more than just the muscles this technique can help you with pain and problem areas that have stumped others for years. When the Fascia gets adhered it can put up to two-thousand pounds of pressure on the body. Come in today to experience the profound benefits of Myofasical release.
** John F. Barnes Myofascial release gives people suffering with Fibromyalgia pain profound relief and benefits.
Deep Tissue Massage
While deep tissue massage uses many of the same massage techniques as Swedish massage, main difference is that the therapist works deeper tissue structures of the muscle and fascia (connective tissue). Deep tissue massage is also a more focused type of massage. The therapist works to release chronic muscle tension, or knots, called adhesions. Many people expect deep tissue massage to be an hour of intense pressure and pain, but this is not the case.
By correctly applying pressure to a muscle while it is contracting and releasing, a massage therapist can “reset” the muscle memory and help it to return to a more comfortable resting length. We use both passive and active movement along with a comfortable level of pressure to achieve beneficial results. This technique can also help to release adhesions and trigger points – painful “knots” in a muscle that can often refer pain to other areas of the body.
The goal of pregnancy massage, (also known as pre-natal massage) is to promote relaxation, soothe nerves, and relieve strained back and leg muscles which most expectant mothers are affected by. The second and third trimesters are the time when the extra weight in a pregnant woman’s belly puts strain on the back. Pregnancy massage can be especially beneficial at this time.
While sports massage was developed for athletes who need to keep their bodies in great condition and quickly work out any stress or injuries, it is a massage good for anyone with chronic pain, injury or range-of-motion issues. Sports massage can be used to get an athlete ready to compete, support them while they compete, or help their body to recover after a sports event. The massage strokes generally concentrate on a specific problem area which may be related to a sport they participated in.
Swedish massage is often referred to as relaxation massage. The goal of the massage therapist is to relax a person’s nervous system which in turns helps the person’s muscles to relax. Swedish massage is the most common and best-known type of massage in the West.
If it’s a person’s first time receiving a massage or they do not get massages very often, Swedish massage is often the perfect massage for them. A Swedish massage can be slow and gentle, or vigorous depending on the therapist’s personal style and the needs of the individual receiving the massage.
Trigger Point Therapy
Occasionally a muscle will develop trigger points that do not clear with neuromuscular work alone. In cases such as this a massage therapist can apply sustained pressure directly to the trigger point for a short period, causing a release in the muscle “knot” which allows for a corresponding lengthening in that muscle group.
Almost everyone can benefit from massage – whether for pain relief, stress reduction or improving flexibility and motion, there’s a therapy for everyone’s individual needs.
Regular massage can help restore normal, pain free muscle function, provide ongoing relaxation, and can even benefit the immune system!
Give us a call if you’d like to experience a truly restorative massage!