Massage therapy is an important and integral part of working to resolve many medical and injury issues, reduce stress, increase well-being and also support people in sports and athletics. There are so many positive reasons for the use of massage therapy outside of simply being enjoyable, that more and more people are turning to massage therapy time and again.
Massage therapy has been used for thousands of years. People have always understood the wonderful qualities of massage therapy – this is why it has stood the test of time as a physical therapy and for personal enjoyment.
History of Massage Therapy
From Greece and Rome to Japan and India, there are many countries that discovered the benefits of massage techniques back in ancient times. Historically, we know of references that talk about the use of massage techniques as far back as 2330 BC. The use of massage therapy has even been mentioned in the bible.
Even the great Greek physician Hippocrates wrote in 460 BC that “the physician must be experienced in many things, but assuredly in rubbing”.
Today, massage is seen as an important therapy, with modern teachings being advanced versions of the massage therapies passed down from times of old. The use of massage therapy has been strong in the East, and is growing in the West to the point that many medical professionals prefer massage therapy over other medical treatments.
Types of Massage Therapy
There are many types of massage available some of which were developed in the West and others in the East. Each type of massage has its own origins and reasons for use, and they can also have varying benefits.
There are around 300 different types of massage, below are just a few:
- Swedish massage – A Western style of massage that works on superficial tissue.
- Sports massage – A great massage for sports people to get knots out the muscles and help keep the muscles and ligaments limber to reduce injury and enhance recovery.
- Indian head massage – An Eastern massage as the name suggests, that works on the scalp, neck and shoulders to improve energy levels.
- Warm stone massage – A wonderfully pampering massage that uses warmed volcanic basalt stones to impart heat to the muscles.
- Remedial/Deep tissue massage – This type of massage works deep into the body and supports the muscles in specific areas of the body, targeting particular muscles that are causing pain or discomfort.
Benefits of Massage Therapy
Dependent on your needs there are different benefits for different people – overall though, all the benefits are something that everyone can experience.
- Everyone – A great way to reduce stress in a person’s life, as massage eases tension and gives a general sense of well-being.
- Sports people and athletes – Sports massage will enable athletes (and weekend athletes!) to ease the knots and tension from muscles and keep them supple to reduce injury. Massage also supports a speedy recovery from the knocks and injuries caused by various sports.
- Elderly – Elderly clients can see a great benefit in increased circulation from massages and also getting heat into muscles that have not been used in a while. This keeps the body supple and helps the blood circulation to keep an elderly person active. Perhaps more importantly, the very act of being touched, which the elderly often no longer experience, can be particularly healing on its own.
- Medical ailments – There are many medical ailments that have symptoms where a massage can improve and reduce the issues the symptoms caused, such as muscular aches and pain, headaches, and poor circulation.
- Injuries – Massages are a great way of speeding up the recovery of injuries and reduce pain.
There are many different types of massage therapy – some work on the internal energy of the body while others work on the anatomy; some work on specific areas of the body while others work the body all over. There are different reasons for using different massage types dependent on a person’s needs, and a well trained therapist can support whatever your requirements may be.
If you think that a massage is simply a luxury to make you feel good, then you will be pleasantly surprised. A massage used in the therapy of a medical problem is effective and non-invasive, and many love these benefits along with the enjoyment of the massage itself.