Massages can be great for relaxation or dealing with injuries, twinges and chronic pain. There are many different types of massage, from intense treatments like Shiatsu or Rolfing, to the light relaxing touches and oils of an Indian Head Massage. Your therapist can guide you to the most appropriate choice, after a consultation.
Now that massage therapists are allowed to practice again, there are a few changes that you should expect when you return to your therapist’s practice room. Felicity Rogers of Banchory Spinal Health explained, ‘Clinics are trying to give patients as normal an experience as possible, whilst adhering to strict hygiene protocols. Clients and massage therapists will be both be wearing masks, although these are not required during any part of the treatment where the patient is face-down. Your massage therapist will adhere to good hand-washing hygiene to avoid the over-use of gloves. Most clinics will ask that you wait in your car. At our premises, we scan the client’s temperature and ask them to wash their hands before entering our treatment rooms. Clients can expect to complete a consent form and provide details for tracing before their appointment. Our massage couch covers are washed after every patient, and the bed itself is wiped down with antibacterial wipes’.
If you’re looking for relaxation, a Swedish, Hot Stone or Indian Head massage could be the perfect option. A hot stone massage uses heated smooth stones to provide a soothing massage with the heat penetrating the muscles to offer deeper relaxation. An Indian Head massage works the area around the head, neck and shoulders. A Swedish massage is probably the best known type of massage, and the therapist will tailor the pressure to suit you. Although this is a relaxing treatment, you’ll really feel the benefit if there are particular areas of muscular tension or tight muscles indicative of stress. Some forms of massage, such as Shiatsu, can be delivered through clothing, whilst other forms can be done seated rather than lying down if that’s a problem for you. Some clinics offer pregnancy massage, teach baby massage or offer specialised treatments suitable for those who have previously had cancer.
Sports Massages are ideal for people needing a deeper massage or those who have particular areas of their body to be treated due to injury. Sports Massage therapists undertake additional training to deepen their knowledge of muscle function and biomechanics, and are more specialised to be able to treat those suffering with injuries or to help avoid them. The therapist may also recommend some stretches along with the treatment. Don’t expect an instant cure. It probably took a long time to develop the injury in the first place and recovery may take a while.
It’s really important to provide feedback to your therapist if something is expectedly painful or uncomfortable, so they can adjust the pressure or explore problematic areas.
Massage offers a wide range of benefits including stress relief and the easing of muscular tension. Massage can improve the process of injury recovery, encouraging increased blood flow and improving circulation. There’s considerable evidence to show it can lower blood pressure and help with migraines too. It can lead to a greater sense of wellbeing, help improve posture and improve joint mobility and flexibility. Now’s the time to explore it for yourself.