Many Benefits of Massage
Massage involves healing by touch. Working with the soft tissues of the body including muscles, tendons and ligaments, the massage therapist helps the body improve the functioning of joints and muscles, as well as promoting circulation and general body tone and relieving mental and physical fatigue.
At Touch of Healing, we believe regular massage is an important facet of maintaining your optimal health.
There are myriad benefits to be had from massage. Among these are benefits to:
- the skin
- circulation of the blood
- lymphatic drainage
- muscular relaxation
- joint mobility
- nerve function
- organ function
- tissue repair
- cell function
The physical passage of a massage therapist’s thumbs, fingers, hands, forearms or elbows over your skin promotes healthy circulation through your body’s largest organ, the skin - simultaneously helping to exfoliate and soften the epidermis and refresh your appearance.As a massage therapist, it is often very easy to tell from the skin of a person (particularly an older person) if they have had regular massage through their life, as their skin will invariably be smoother, more supple and full as a result.
Circulation of the blood: A healthy heart is assisted by massage
The rhythmic strokes a massage therapist will make through the soft tissues of your body assist your body’s natural blood circulation from the peripheries of your body to your heart. This will assist in the removal of the toxins your body naturally creates, which may be left behind in unassisted blood flow. Massage also promotes the flow of fresh, nutrient rich blood through the arteries and into the tissues of your body’s organs, providing a suitable environment for healing and regeneration of all your systems.
Just as massage stimulates the circulation of the blood, it stimulates the defences of the immune system and increases the flow and volume of lymph fluid. Movement of the lymph clears toxins, unwanted proteins and waste which can not be removed by any other means from your tissues and cells. Most notably, the lymphatic drainage aspect of massage is greatly beneficial in relieving swelling around the joints and extremities of the body.
Your massage therapist is skilled in relieving the knotting tension which builds from stress, sport, poor posture or any of life’s other unbalancing forces. The kneading of muscle tissue eases soreness and stiffness by mechanical release and improved blood and lymph circulation.
Skilful application of specific techniques allows your massage therapist to improve the range of motion of your joints. Restrictions in joint mobility can affect your every day activities and lead to painful movement.
By use of slow, broad movements of the hands, a massage therapist is able to effect a calming of the peripheral nervous system to ease pain and discomfort where nerve tissues have become inflamed.
Nerve Entrapment Syndrome (NES) is commonly referred to as a pinched nerve and can cause moderate to severe pain. It is a condition caused by undue pressure on nerves and nerve roots by muscles, tendons, soft tissue, fascia or ligaments. Pain can be localised to the affected area or outwardly radiating. The area served by the impinged nerve can feel weakened, numb, and can experience a tingling or twitching sensation.
Massage techniques are helpful in releasing tension and breaking up scar tissue and adhesions that contribute to NES. Myofascial Release and Deep Tissue Massage can be performed in tandem with Muscle Energy techniques to delicately lengthen muscle tissues while releasing tension and adhesions in the affected area.
Over-tight muscles, particularly around the back and stomach, can prevent your organs from performing optimally. Furthermore, the tension placed on nerves that supply these organs by poor posture or muscular overload can have a negative impact on organ function.
Massage helps to remove these restrictions to organ function, and may also be applied through the stomach wall to help ease congestion of the intestinal organs.
Repair to soft tissue injuries of the body, particularly muscle injuries, can be accelerated by the application of the correct massage techniques. As muscle tissue repairs itself, scar tissue is formed. Massage assists in the laying down of scar tissue along the line of the fibres of the muscles, thereby allowing the muscle to begin stretching and contracting along its normal lines, without the interference of scar tissue. Scar tissue also has a tendency to form adhesions between the muscle affected and the surrounding tissues; massage can be applied to prevent and/or remove these adhesions, reducing the risk of re-injury caused when the stiffer tissue of the scar causes tearing of the surrounding muscle when the muscle is stretched.
Every cell of your body requires oxygen, water and a combination of nutrients to survive and thrive. In addition, the cells of your body also require a waste removal system. The rhythmic flow of a massage provides assistance to both of these functions. The passage of a therapist's hands over your skin assists in pushing the extra-cellular fluid past the cells, bathing them in nutrient rich fluid. It also creates a partial vacuum behind the hand, helping to draw waste materials out of the cells.