One of the most commonly taught and well-known massage techniques, Swedish massage is a vigorous system of treatment designed to energize the body by stimulating circulation. Five basic strokes, all flowing toward the heart, are used to manipulate the soft tissues of the body. The disrobed client is covered by a sheet, with only the area being worked on exposed. Therapists use a combination of kneading, rolling, vibrational, percussive, and tapping movements, with the application of oil, to reduce friction on the skin. The many benefits of Swedish massage may include generalized relaxation, dissolution of scar tissue adhesions, and improved circulation, which may speed healing and reduce swelling from injury.
Sports massage is designed to enhance athletic performance and recovery. There are three contexts in which sports massage can be useful to an athlete: pre-event, post-event, and injury treatment. Pre-event massage is delivered at the performance site, usually with the athlete fully clothed. Fast-paced and stimulating, it helps to establish blood flow and to warm up muscles. During the massage, the athlete generally focuses on visualizing the upcoming event. Post-event massage is also delivered on site, through the clothes. The intent here is to calm the nervous system and begin the process of flushing toxins and waste products out of the body. Post-event massage can reduce recovery time, enabling an athlete to resume training much sooner than rest alone would allow. When an athlete sustains an injury, skillful massage therapy can often speed and improve the quality of healing.
Hot Stone is a Swedish style massage that incorporates warm stones. The warmth encourages the exchange of blood and lymph and provide soothing heat for deep-tissue work. Stones are placed in varying positions on the body for energy balancing or may be used by the therapist for specific trigger-point work.
Swedish style massage that focuses on relieving specific pain, tension, or ailments.
Medical massage is conducted with the approval and diagnosis of the client’s physician. Medical massage along with other prescribed treatment can be very effective in relieving symptoms and causes of diagnosis. Common conditions include: carpal tunnel, rotator cuff syndrome, plantar fascists, tennis elbow, and golfer’s elbow.