Soft, long, kneading strokes on that sore calf muscle. Hot natural stones melting the tension away from your lower back. And your neck, dissolving into the hands of someone with certification. No, this is not a Fifty Shades of Grey novel. This is what it’s like to get a massage at Verde Salon.
The world would be a better place if everyone could get a massage once a week, maybe twice a week, or just every day. The benefits are insurmountable: improved balance, decrease in rheumatoid arthritis pain, relaxation, lower blood pressure, improved flexibility, improved sleep, improved circulation, and overall improvement of the best parts of life. Too many of us spend 8 or 9 hours of our very important lives sitting at a desk. This many hours may not seem like that big of a deal, but is actually causing damage to your lower back. For those office drones, a massage is crucial in reaching optimum health. So is quitting that office job. Just kidding. No, but seriously. If you won’t quit your job, at least get a massage today after work.
There’s a wonderful world of massages out there that caters to your specific needs. Some people prefer the “hurt so good” pain that comes with a Thai massage, while others prefer the soothing sensations of a Swedish massage. Let’s review five of these massage styles that will allow you to sleep at night and make you feel downright great.
The Swedes are known for their cinnamon rolls, their meatballs, and yes, their massages. The technique was almost discovered by accident by Per Henrik Ling, a Swedish fencing instructor in the 1830s. When he injured himself while fencing, he took the liberty of performing tapping, or percussion strokes around his hurt areas. He ended up curing his ailments in the process, at which point he developed the technique we know today as Swedish massage.
If you are aiming for a massage where you can fully relax, shut your brain off and let the soothing sounds of a guzzling brook on a Spotify playlist and the smell of candle wax take you away, then a Swedish massage is the way to go. It’s a technique targeted for those who have knots that need to be released. This 60-90 minute massage involves kneading, deep circular motions, flowing strokes in the direction of the heart, tapping and light joint movements. Sometimes, the joints in the fingers just need to be loosened, especially if you’ve had your hands on a keyboard all day. But it’s okay, don’t quit that job. Just get a Swedish massage.
Hot Stone Massage
Who would have thought that hot rocks could be so therapeutic? It’s very similar to a Swedish massage, replacing human hands with that of hot Basalt river stones and gentle pressure. Sometimes even cold stones are used as well. These stones have been smoothed out from centuries of river current and are now silky enough to alleviate our stress. If you suffer from anxiety, back pain, depression and anxiety, you may find relief from these soothing touches of Mother Nature.
We’d recommend you undergo a hot stone massage on a cold, anxious day in order to melt away your cold anxious thoughts. And that night, you’ll find yourself sleeping like a baby and dreaming of the hot stone’s warmth. There are many benefits to this technique that will have you craving the softness of Basalt river stones for days to come.
We talked about earth. Now let’s talk science. While Mother Nature fills your body with warmth, magnet therapy utilizes elementary particles and magnetic fields to help you extinguish that growing stress in your brain and in your body. Just how acupuncture uses thin needles to get the blood flowing, magnet therapy uses the natural magnetic charge that our bodies develop to ease pain. If your magnetic field is out of balance due to that pointless conference call you were stuck in, applying a magnet to your skin, will shuffle your ions around in a relieving way.
These high-tech magnets can be worn in a variety of ways, including bracelets and necklaces. People who undergo magnet therapy usually have inflammation, injuries or chronic pain. Somehow, humans found a way to harness particles for purposes of relief and it works. So the next time you find yourself pretending to pay attention at that soul-less conference call and contemplating your purpose in life, get on your computer, pretend to be taking notes and actually book an appointment for magnet therapy.
Deep Tissue Massage
Do you like Swedish massages but are hoping for something deeper? Deep tissue massage takes deeper strokes and finger pressure that will help you alleviate that every day stress. Pressure is applied to your muscles and connective tissues in a way that might hurt a bit, but it’s a pain that’s worth it, especially if it’s ridding the more permanent pain in the long run. Short pain in exchange for chronic pain? Yes, please. The many benefits of deep tissue massage include improving limited mobility, the ease of chronic muscle pain, improving your posture and alleviating stress from micromanaging bosses.
While we’re on the topic of pain, let’s segway into that of Thai massages. These are perhaps the most painful and if you’re a fan of “hurts so good” sensations, then this might be your pick. During a Thai massage, you might find the masseuse walking on your back and using particular techniques with his or her own feet to apply pressure to your back. There’s a lot of palm work with this one, palms that rub in circular motions on the areas in question.
Thai massages are great for those who like being turned into a human pretzel. You’ll be pulled and twisted until you hear things crack. If something hurts too much, don’t be hesitant to let the masseuse know so that they can gauge your level of pain. Thai massages should come with a safe word. No matter the pain, it won’t be as painful as having to sit through your company All Hands and hearing buzz words like “strategy” or “synergy.”
Full Body Lymphatic Treatment
Enough about pain. Let’s ease up on the twisting and pulling and talk about a more gentle massage, such as full body lymphatic treatment. Don’t be turned off by its rather medical name. This treatment is just as soothing as the others. It was a technique that was created and mastered in Germany for purposes of treating lymphedema, an accumulation of fluid that can occur after surgery. For that reason, it is highly recommended for those with this condition.
It begins with a light massage on the neck. The gentle strokes move in the direction of the lymphatic system in order to allow accumulated lymph fluid to drain through the right avenues. It can last anywhere from 45 to 60 minutes and afterwards, you’ll feel an improvement in your immune and nervous system.
We are all unique in that our bodies are complex machines that each require their own attention. Furthermore, some of us have more tolerance to pain than others. The wonderful thing about massage therapy is that there are so many out there. And this blog has only scratched the surface of massage techniques. So do your research, get out there and whether it’s through a human pretzel or gentle strokes, find a way to melt your stress away.