There are two primary motivations behind getting a massage. Many people think of massage as a “spa” activity akin to receiving a facial or a mani-pedi, something that is aimed at pampering the client and helping them relax. While it is certainly true that one of the major benefits of massage therapy is relaxing the mind and body, not many people realize that there are some very major therapeutic benefits to the practice as well.
Not only can massage therapy help to soothe sore muscles and work kinks out of the muscular system, it can also help relieve anxiety and stress as well as promoting restfulness for those who suffer from insomnia. Participation in massage therapy can also help with relieving headaches, soft tissue injuries as well as improving circulation and blood flow.
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The Benefits of Massage Therapy
- Massage therapy has been shown to dramatically assist with relaxation, both on the physical level of soothing tight muscles as well as promoting mental serenity as well. Massage therapy encourages increased circulation while loosening muscles and tissue tightness related to tension and stress. Many patients who participate in massage therapy report a dramatic decrease in levels of anxiety, heart rate and general nervousness after each session.
- Massage therapy is beneficial for individuals who suffer from insomnia or other sleep related issues, as it helps to promote restfulness and REM sleep.
- Patients undergoing massage therapy are often instructed to focus upon their breathing during the session. Learning to control one’s breathing offers benefits with improved circulation as well as improved alertness and mental health.
- Regular participation in massage therapy can help correct posture, which in turn helps keep the muscular system and spine properly aligned.
- Humans, like other animals, have a basic need for touch. For individuals who are single or experience social anxiety, massage therapy exposes the body to a superficial form of skin-to-skin contact, which has been shown to have therapeutic benefits.
- Patients who experience chronic muscular pain can benefit from regular massage therapy, often in conjunction with physical therapy to provide the best results and fastest healing.
- Athletes often incorporate regular massage therapy into their routine to seek relief for strained, tight muscles. In instances where an individual is recovering from an injury, specified massage techniques can be used to help prevent swelling and decrease pain.