Swedish massage is undoubtedly one of the most popular and well-known types of massages out there. What many don’t know is that Swedish massage is done in five unique steps, with each technique applying a different and unique type of pressure. These techniques increase oxygenation of blood and release metabolic waste such as lactic and uric acids from the tissues of the muscles.
Swedish massage can be particularly helpful for athletes, those suffering from joint pain and stiffness or for those suffering from emotional stress. The techniques that embody this classic form of massage are as follows:
These long sweeping strokes alternate between firm and light pressure and are performed by using the palm of the hand or the finger tips. The sliding technique releases knots and tension in the muscles.
Whereas Effleurage is long and sweeping, the technique is more kneading and static. The kneading of the muscles allows the therapist to penetrate deep into the muscles of the body and prepare the body for the next step in the massage.
With this technique, the therapist will rhythmically ‘tap’ the client’s back with loosely held, cupped fists. The muscles will in turn loosen and relax. Generally the sides of the hands are used in this technique.
After the muscles have been stroked, kneaded, and tapped, it’s time to bring on the heat. The heat in this technique further relaxes the muscles. Rubbing the palms of their hands vigorously together, the therapist will produce heat and lay the hands palm down on to the client’s back. This is generally done with the body is being treated by a deeper massage.
The final step loosens and relaxes the muscles to their maximum level by using a back and forth action of the fingertips or the heel of the hand over the skin. The sides of the hand are also used.
After this type of massage therapy you should feel both relaxed and energized! The muscles are loose, the knots are gone, and the body is ready to start over new.
If you are a novice to massage, or feel a deep-tissue massage may be too much, ask us about our Swedish massage. Not only will we share all of the techniques beforehand, we’ll also help you select the essential oils that will most enhance your experience.