What Type of Massage Should I Get?

by Karen Brooks on May 21, 2012

When it comes to getting a massage, whether in a spa or on a clinicians table, there are various styles and techniques available. I will be the first to admit, I had no idea which massage would benefit me, so I compiled this list to help explain the options available.

Aromatherapy: Blends various essential oils and uses massage techniques to focus on mental, physical, emotional or spiritual healing.

Chair: Uses an ergonomically designed chair and specific protocols to release tension. Client typically is fully clothed. These are commonly seen in airports, malls, or trade show events.

Craniosacral: Slightly manipulates the head and bottom of the spine. Typically used for headaches, whiplash, back pain, jaw, ear and eye problems.

Deep Tissue: Slow and firm strokes with firm pressure into muscles and connective tissues to release chronic aches and pains.

Myofacial Release: Manipulation and stretching of the connective tissue that surrounds the muscles of the body. Long, gentle sliding and stretching strokes release muscle tension by gently releasing restrictions in the connective tissue. This helps to rebalance the body.

Reflexology: Thumb pressure is used on specific points on the hands and feet. This helps to improve circulation and promote relaxation in other parts of the body.

Rolfing: Deep muscular manipulation and massage technique to relieve body and emotional tensions.

Shiatsu: Japanese style of pressure point massage applied to specific points along the bodys acupuncture meridians.

Sports: Different techniques are used to prevent athtletic injury and improve flexibility and performance.

Stone: Hot or cold smooth stones are placed on the body’s energy points or chakras. This massage is popular in spas worldwide.

Swedish: Kneading, stroking, and friction techniques along with oils are used to promote relaxation, increase circulation and reduce stress.

No matter what type of massage you choose, I have not found anyone who has thought that this treatment has not benefited them in some manner. Be curious and experiment with several of the techniques. Better yet, read a few books on the subject and practice on a partner!

Let me know which method you prefer. Are there any tips that you have learned? Please let me know your thoughts below.

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