Stress is a big part of our lives, it can affect everything from our sleep, to our eating habits and even our skin. A small amount of stress is good for us, it keeps us motivated. However, how do we know when the stress becomes too much and what can we do about it? Relaxation is something all of us try to achieve (some more naturally than others) and one of the best ways to achieve this is by having a massage.
Massage is good for us and has been performed for centuries, some evidence dating back to the cave paintings of ancient cave dwellers. So, why has this method of relaxation been used for so many years? To understand this question, we need to know the benefits of having a massage and what exactly the treatment includes.
Are there proven benefits?
A study carried out by the Cedars-Sinai's Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences, reported that people who have a massage treatment experience measurable changes in their body's immune and endocrine response. In the study, 29 subjects received 45 minutes of Swedish massage and 24 received 45 minutes of light touch massage.
Among the study's results, people in the Swedish massage group experienced significant changes in white blood cells that play a large role in defending the body from disease. Subjects also experienced a decrease in AVP (a hormone believed to play a role in aggressive behaviour and linked to helping cause increases in the stress hormone cortisol). This study shows that there are physical as well as mental benefits of having a massage treatment.
What types of massage are available?
At Springwell Clinic we offer Swedish and hot stone massage. Your therapist may decide there are areas in which deeper techniques can be applied. Deep tissue massage is preformed using the elbow and other parts of the arm to apply more pressure and shift stubborn knots. Your therapist will only perform these movements on stronger, muscular areas with your consent. Not every client will require these techniques, so your therapist will provide a thorough consultation prior to the treatment.
What is hot stone massage?
Hot stone massage originated in India and was used as an alternative to medicine to relive muscle pain. Made from basalt rock, the stone formed millions of years ago during volcanic eruptions and contain magnetic or titanic iron which retains heat. The localized heat and weight of the stones warm and relax muscles, allowing the massage therapist to apply deeper pressure to those areas without causing discomfort. Hot stones can be added to any of our massage treatments.
No matter the type, the benefits of massage are clear. If you need a little time to yourself for some much-deserved relaxation, then look no further.