Tuesday, 28 November 2017 05:54

Massage Techniques

Written by   Lilliane Caron

A massage can instantly relax the body and mind; reduce stress, alleviate neck, shoulder, and back pain; reduce fatigue and headaches; and improve blood flow. It seems like there is a never-ending list of benefits and should certainly be seen as a necessity these days rather than a luxury. With many different types of massages on the market, it is hard to know which ones to offer in a spa, and more importantly, based on clients’ needs, which massages to suggest. Here are just 10 of the 80-plus different massage techniques available.

1. A Swedish massage is a great massage for clients that have never had a massage before; they are very gentle and relaxing. The Swedish massage technique involves long smooth strokes, kneading, and circular movements.

2. Relaxation treatments are all about soothing and relaxing, not relieving chronic pain or other underlying ailments. They require long, smooth, rhythmic, and flowing movements and pressure that is deep but not painful.

3. Aromatherapy massage is a treatment with the addition of one or more scented essential oils to address specific needs. Therapists will generally use unscented oil or massage gel and customize to the specific treatment for each client, depending on what they are looking for. Aromatherapy has a wide range of benefits, from physical to emotional, which can be absorbed through inhalation and skin application.

4. Hot stone massages combine smooth, heated stones with a Swedish or deep tissue massage. The heat from the stones helps to warm and loosen tight muscles, as well as balance energy centers in the body. It does wonders in releasing muscular tension and is one of the best ways to relieve stress.

5. Trigger point therapy identifies and works on very specific problem areas of the body, focusing on the locations where the pain occurs to provide the best method of treatment. The client is asked to participate through deep breathing, as well as identifying the exact location and level of the discomfort. The results and benefits of trigger point massages are releasing constricted areas in the muscles thus alleviating pain. Clients can experience a significant decrease in pain after a single treatment.

6. Thai massage helps to reduce stress levels and improve overall circulation. This is achieved by the gradual movement through different yoga-like positions. It helps to increase flexibility and motion of the muscles preventing any further strain. It uses a gentle pressure on the energy lines of the body. This concept of energy lines is based on the Asian concept that there is a system of energy lines throughout the body. If they are blocked, it is said that many health issues can develop. Working on, and unblocking, these lines helps to improve overall health.

7. To perform a prenatal massage, there is training that involves adjusting techniques according to the mother’s needs. It can reduce stress, decrease swelling, relieve aches and pains, and reduce anxiety and depression. Massages should be avoided until after the first trimester, after that, it is perfectly fine. However, it is always important to make sure the body is positioned comfortably and properly supported.

8. Deep tissue massages are designed to realign deep layers of muscles. It is used to alleviate chronic aches and pains and target problem areas, such as neck, upper back, shoulders, lower back pain, and leg muscle tightness. The movements are slower than other massage techniques and the pressure needs to be deeper and more concentrated to the reach the deep muscle tissue. There is often a level of discomfort during the treatment, but generally any leftover stiffness or pain does not last longer than a day.

9. Reflexology involves applying pressure to certain points on the foot that correspond to organs and systems in the body. Reflexology is very relaxing, especially for people who stand on their feet all day or simply have tired, achy feet. This technique is based on the concept that all the organs of the body are mapped to feet and hands. Reflexology applies some stretching and movement to pressure points on the feet with the goal of promoting healthy functioning of the body’s various organs.

10. Sports massages are designed for those involved in physical activity, but not necessarily professional athletes. The focus is on preventing and treating injury and enhancing athletic performance. A combination of techniques is used to prepare for peak performance, prevent injury, and treat injury. The benefits include circulating blood and lymphatic fluids, as well as stretching muscle tissue and breaking down scar tissue.

When it comes to deciding what massage techniques to specialize in, choose a therapy that completely resonates with the spa. It is possible to master multiple techniques. Ultimately, the goal is to provide a completely blissful holistic experience for clients and a self-fulfilling experience during every treatment.

Lilliane Caron is the founder and director of Waxxxpress USA. Known worldwide for her waxing techniques, she is dedicated to helping create better salons by delivering superior products, exceptional service, and industry-leading education. In her untiring quest to make beauty therapists’ jobs easier, Caron continues to devote herself to salon innovation. Her success is attributed to a high standard of customer service, training, and customer support. Therapists can deliver every treatment in confidence knowing that Waxxxpress products care for the health, comfort, and well-being of their clients as they indulge in their salon treatment.

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