Ahhh… isn’t it great to unwind every once in a while and treat yourself to a soothing massage? But which one should you opt for? Here are four popular massage therapy treatments, all of which are offered at most spas. Take your pick and enjoy getting a great rubdown that will put you in a total state of relaxation!
The technique: A massage therapist applies massage oil or lotion onto the body and then strokes and kneads the surface layers of muscles in long, smooth and circular motions. This is the most popular type of massage therapy in North America as it is gentle and relaxing.
Whom it’s good for: Those who suffer from regular joint pain or stiffness. If you’ve never had a massage before, this is also a great introduction for first-timers that will leave you hooked on getting one regularly!
The technique: Slow strokes or friction methods are used to target the body’s deeper layers of muscle and connective tissue in order to relieve severe tension. Due to the intensity of pressure that is applied, it’s typical to feel sore for one or two days after a deep tissue massage.
Whom it’s good for: Those who experience chronic muscle pain, or who perform strenuous physical activity on the same muscles repetitively (such as athletes).
The technique: A massage therapist places smooth, heated stones on certain points on the body (typically along both sides of the spine as well as in the hands). As the stones warm up and loosen tight muscles, the therapist also holds oiled, heated stones in the palm of their hand and uses them to firmly stroke the client’s leg, arm and torso muscles.
Whom it’s good for: Those who experience muscle tension, and who are looking for an effective tissue and muscle massage that incorporates heat.
The technique: Employs the same techniques used in a Swedish massage, but with the addition of one or more scented plant oils (“essential oils” such as lavender) which are believed to offer relaxation and energizing benefits. This type of massage is considered to be a form of alternative medicine as it focuses on incorporating scents for therapeutic use.
Whom it’s good for: Those who are feeling stressed for emotional reasons.