Investigating massage therapy options for yourself is an essential step toward feeling your best. The wide range of massage techniques available each provides distinct benefits to meet a variety of wellness goals. Deep tissue massage is one such technique and is one of the most popular massage styles offered.
This Massage Technique Defined
Massage with a deep tissue focus involves working on deep layers of muscles and connective tissue. Although a massage therapist will often use Swedish massage strokes during this type of massage, the pressure used is much greater. A therapist using a Swedish method massages with their hands and fingers. A deep tissue expert will use their forearms and elbows to perform deeper tissue work.
Since they both focus on enhancing circulation and movement, deep tissue and Swedish massage both fall under the umbrella of rehabilitation massage. Some specific techniques in this massage therapy tradition include neuromuscular therapy (NMT) and myofascial release.
How This Type of Massage Works
Massage, in general, enhances circulation to any targeted areas. Increased blood flow brings the oxygen and nutrients needed to maintain muscle while removing excess fluid and waste products from the area. Lactic acid is one such form of bodily waste that can make your muscles feel sore, so massaging it from the muscles can reduce soreness.
If you’re desk-bound for hours at work, you may have myofascial adhesions or bands of scar tissue that restrict the range of motion and make you feel stiff. Such adhesions are more than uncomfortable; they can make your muscles, tendons, and ligaments more prone to additional pain and even injury.
Deep tissue work can help break down myofascial adhesions and lengthen tissues. Lengthening promotes connective and muscle tissue relaxation, so they can move with more ease and less discomfort.
Whether you’re a weekend warrior or regularly participate in some form of sport, deep tissue therapeutic massage can help you. Warming, stretching, and releasing the tissues can help speed recovery from exertion and reduce muscle fatigue. It also will make you feel great, so it’s a beautiful way to treat yourself for sticking to a fitness program.
If you’ve overdone it and have become injured, you’re at risk for additional injury. This is because the natural response to an injury is to compensate for it. For example, if you’ve sprained an ankle, you could be unevenly redistributing your weight to favor the uninjured side, making it more likely to develop issues with your hips.
During a session featuring deep tissue work, your massage therapist will assess the condition of your muscles in areas that may have sustained such compensation-related injuries. They will also examine your muscles for regions of referred pain, or pain that occurs in seemingly distant regions. All these areas can be worked with to reduce such secondary issues.
Some Benefits of this Form of Therapeutic Massage
From head-to-toe, this form of massage therapy offers an astounding array of benefits. Any form of massage does some pretty wonderful things for the body. These benefits include enhancing circulation, reducing pain, and boosting mood.
In addition, massage using deep tissue-focused techniques can be particularly helpful for those with connective tissue related conditions. Since the connective tissues run throughout the body and are impacted every time you move, any injury to them can have a big impact on your wellness. Some conditions helped by deep tissue work include:
- muscle or tendon injuries
- carpal tunnel syndrome
- chronic pain
- sleep disorders
- scar tissue from burns
- high blood pressure
- spasticity from a stroke
The above list is by no means exhaustive. Since the body is so interconnected, all systems could potentially benefit from this form of massage. Whether deep tissues are worked through massage or exercise, the body reaps similar overall health benefits.
One frequently overlooked aspect of health is mental and psychological wellness. Since circulation is boosted throughout the body, your brain is better able to process ideas and reconsider any thought patterns. Moreover, when you receive this form of therapy, it sends a powerful message to your psyche that you’re a priority in your own life.
This therapeutic massage also enables you to address your own wellness needs directly. Sore shoulder? Tired feet? No problem. You know your body best. Your massage therapist’s job is to listen to you and enhance your wellness on your terms.
At Qi Massage & Natural Healing Spa, we offer an impressive array of treatments and therapies. Since we specialize in creating customized treatments for each client, you never need to feel intimidated or confused. Contact us today to book an appointment for deep tissue massage or other spa services.