General Guidelines

What is Massage?

What to expect when you visit a therapist

History (in brief)

What is massage?

This document provides general information on what to expect when you visit a massage therapist, as well as explaining briefly how their discipline works. It must be noted, however, that every therapist works in an individual way, and may subscribe to slightly different theories as to how their practice is carried out. It is always advisable that you ask to see relevant qualifications and discuss the treatment offered to you by the practitioner if you are in any doubt whatsoever.

Massage is a form of touch that enables the body to relax, thus inducing a feeling of wellbeing. More vigorous forms of massage can free up tense muscles and help with stiff joints. Sometimes deep-seated emotions are released during a massage.

The body is covered with skin, which is the body's largest sensory organ. Messages are sent through the skin to the brain via the nervous system. Thus, massaging the skin has an effect on the entire body, including one's heart rate, blood pressure and breathing. It can also help to eliminate toxins from the body and improve muscle tone.

Massage facilitates the release of chemicals known as endorphins, the body's own natural painkillers, bringing about a feeling of relaxation and well being.

As stress levels reduce, the body's own natural healing abilities kick in. Massage also serves to reduce the body's levels of chemicals such as cortisol and norepinephrine, which if found in high dosages could seriously impair the immune system.

Main uses

Stress, fatigue, insomnia, headaches, AIDS, muscular aches and pains.

People taking medication for pain-relief, epilepsy, etc., often find that after a time that they can lower their dosage, since massage enhances the effect of the medication they are currently on.

Click here to find out what to expect when you visit a massage therapist.

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