"Massage therapy" is a term which includes various techniques. Generally the massage therapists rub, press or manipulate the soft tissues and muscles of the body. They usually use their hands and fingers, but may also use their elbows, forearms or feet.
Listed Below Are 8 Different Types of Massage:
In this type of massage, the massage therapist employs long strokes, deep circular movements, vibration, kneading and tapping. Sports massage done for athlete resembles the Swedish massage and is adapted according to the requirements of the athletes. Trigger point massage and deep tissue massage are some of the examples. They focus on myofascial trigger points (muscle knots) which are tender and painful upon pressure and results in symptoms in other areas of the body.
As the name itself suggests, essential oils are used in this type of massage. The massage therapist selects oils based on an individual's needs. This massage is helpful in energizing, relaxing, reducing stress, etc. Lavender oil is one of the most commonly used essential oils for aromatherapy massage.
Hot Stone Massage:
Smooth stones are heated and placed on specific points on the body. This helps in loosening and warming the tense muscles and also helps in balancing the energy centers in the body. Gentle pressure with the stones may also be applied by the massage therapist.
Deep Tissue Massage:
The deeper layers of muscle and connective tissue are targeted in this type of massage. It is beneficial in chronically tense/tight muscles or painful muscles, repetitive stress, patients recuperating from injury or having postural problems. Patients may feel tender for 1 to 2 days after a deep tissue massage. Friction techniques or slow strokes are used across the grain of the muscle by the massage therapist.
Thai massage helps in balancing the energies of the body with the use of gentle pressure on certain points of the body. Stretches and compressions are also done in Thai massage. Thai massage is very energizing when compared to other types of massages. It helps in reducing stress and improving range of motion and flexibility.
Also known as prenatal massage, pregnancy massage is becoming quite popular with pregnant mothers. Massage therapists should be qualified in pregnancy massage to know the right way to place and support the pregnant mother's body during the massage along with knowledge on modifying the massage techniques. Pregnancy massage is helpful in decreasing swelling, reducing stress/anxiety, alleviating aches, pains and depression. This massage is personalized according to a woman's specific needs.
Sports massage is specifically tailored for athletes or individuals involved in sports or other physical activities. The main focus is on preventing and treating injuries and boosting the athlete's performance. There is a blend of techniques used in a sports massage. The strokes used are faster than the Swedish massage. The common technique used is facilitated stretching which helps in loosening the muscles and increasing the flexibility.
The back muscles and its problems are focused in this type of massage. Few massage clinics/spas give 30-minute back massages.