The key health benefits of massage
When asking the general public about massage, the common images that the word “massage” conjures up are spas, relaxation, pampering, weekend breaks, or sheer luxury.
Some spa hotels are the ultimate in luxury and have become a one-stop-shop for all your beauty and pampering needs: without leaving the venue you can have a massage and your hair and nails done. For example, salons like Rush Hair can offer most of the above.
But let’s now stop and think about the meaning and the key benefits of looking after yourself, paying particular attention to massage.
A Swedish massage for example can help reduce your heart rate and blood pressure which in itself is a key benefit for long term health and can therefore be particularly useful in old age. Applying the right massage and stretching techniques can also help to increase joint mobility and flexibility. The use of specific pressure points during a massage can also have positive effects on headaches or back pain.
The state of relaxation induced by massage can ultimately work towards improving sleep patterns and therefore help in cases of insomnia, stress, depression and anxiety (and not forgetting weight management as sleep is related to hormone production). People suffering from chronic pain from bad posture, spinal problems or arthritis can also benefit from having regular treatment as massage works on the pain receptors and the central nervous system to mimic the effects of painkillers.
Lymphatic drainage massage can help to relieve the uncomfortable symptoms of water retention in the feet and legs. Working on swollen lymph nodes to drain the excess liquid can not only normalise water balance in the body but can also improve your immune defences.
Finally, deep tissue or sports/remedial massage has helped athletes and sportspeople over the years to help prevent or treat injuries. In a way, having regular massage for sportspeople is a key component of their fitness regime.
So, as you can see, the image of massage as a luxury can be enjoyed only occasionally and for pure indulgence only is quite limited: massage is just as necessary as brushing your teeth in the morning.