Relaxation and Wellbeing
Clients often tell me that therapeutic massage is a different to other massage they have experienced because of how it makes them feel, and how it promotes an overall sense of relaxation and wellbeing.
Julie has a busy life and for her, massage is a space to let go and it’s time for herself.
She doesn’t have any particular muscular issues that need work. I focus on head and face with Julie, because this helps to release mental stress.
I can feel the mental stress leaving her body, just by holding her head at the start of the massage. She feels drowsy and dazed by the end, but happy and deeply relaxed.
Another client, Beth, has head, hand and foot massage for the same reason. For her, massage is about creating a feeling of blissful relaxation that nourishes and sustains her.
As well as dissolving mental stress through working on the head and face, the reflex points in the hands and feet aid whole body relaxation.
David tells me that he doesn’t always feel the benefit from the session straight away. He is used to very physically strong massage and so the more gradual build-up and gentle pace of therapeutic massage doesn’t always register immediately.
However, he comes back because in the days afterwards, he feels his body unwind and a deep feeling of wellbeing arise, that is unlike anything else he has experienced in massage.
*Client names changed
Scientific research on massage and relaxation
Massage is better at reducing anxiety than any other treatment studied (Crawford et al meta analysis 2016).
Massage benefits may include improvements in body image esteem, pain management and the therapeutic value of touch and it could play a preventative role in a decline in emotional wellbeing (Munk and Zanjani 2011).
Research indicates that massage therapy has a positive impact on emotional wellbeing, in both healthy adults and those with mental health conditions (MTI Research Group 2017).
*Thanks to the Massage Training Institute for these research summaries.
Main page image courtesy of Rod Long on Unsplash