What is massage therapy?
Massage is an intuitive healing art that has been around for millennia. Massage therapy is based on our instinct to rub areas that hurt. We rub our head when we have a head ache, if we bump our arm we rub it, and mothers rub and pat their infants when they cry.
Massage therapy is a field that takes that very basic principle and evolves it into a science.
History of Massage
Massage therapy dates back thousands of years. References to massage appear in writings from ancient China, Japan, India, Arabic nations, Egypt, Greece (Hippocrates defined medicine as "the art of rubbing"), and Rome. Massage became widely used in Europe during the Renaissance. In the 1850s, two American physicians who had studied in Sweden introduced massage therapy in the United States, where it became popular and was promoted for a variety of health purposes. With scientific and technological advances in medical treatment during the 1930s and 1940s, massage fell out of favor in the United States. Interest in massage revived in the 1970s, especially among athletes.
Benefits of Massage
Stress relief is key to achieving a healthier lifestyle. Even a single massage session can significantly lower heart rate, cortisol and insulin levels - all of which help reduce daily stress.
Relax. Reset. Repeat. Massage has been shown to help the body enter a relaxing rest-and-recovery mode: an effect that lasts long after the massage is over.
Massage helps reinforce healthy and natural movements, which can get your posture back on track.
Massage improves blood flow, which increases oxygen and nutrients to the area improving body function.
Lower Blood Pressure
Massage is relaxing to receive and as stress reduces, so does blood pressure
Massage gets to the root of persistent pain by relaxing tense muscles.
Improves Flexibility and Range of Motion
Massaging tight muscles can help reduce the stress on joints and can help keep joints more fluid, making you more flexible and less prone to injury.
Promotes Deeper and Easier Breathing
One of the signs of anxiety and stress is constricted breathing. Massage can play an important role in reliving respiratory issues and training the body how to relax.
Massage helps ease the pressure and pain, which can also reduce the chance and frequency of headaches.
Strengthens the Immune System
Studies indicate that regular massage can naturally increase the immune system’s cytotoxic capacity–the activity level of the body’s natural "killer cells".
Enhances Post-Operative Rehabilitation
Massage helps the body pump more oxygen and nutrients into tissues and vital organs. This makes massage therapy a great supplement to post-operative rehabilitation.
Improves Rehabilitation After Injury
A continual massage program can accelerate the recovery process by restoring blood, oxygen and nutrients to the injured area.