The Benefits of Massage
There are many benefits to massage, such as:
- Stress Relief: Massage can help you to relax by stimulating the release of brain chemicals like serotonin and oxytocin. Moderate pressure applied by a professional massage therapist causes both your heart rate and your blood pressure to go down. Additionally, the stress-relieving effects can help to reduce pain.
- Rehabilitation: If you have been injured playing sports or working out, massage therapy can help with your rehabilitation as well. For example, massage can eliminate the tightness that comes with a hamstring injury and speed up your recovery.
- Mood Enhancer: By reducing stress hormones, massage can actually improve your mood.
The most popular types of massage are:
- Deep Tissue Massage: With a deep tissue massage, both the upper and lower layers of your muscles and tissues get manipulated. This style of massage involves hard pressure and slow strokes by the massage therapist; it is used to relieve intense pain and tension in the muscles. It is not uncommon for people to have a lingering soreness for a day or two after a deep tissue massage.
- Swedish Massage: This the most common form of massage. It helps you to relax with the use of long kneading strokes that are applied with moderate pressure. It relieves sore and stiff muscles and improves circulation. The five basic strokes in Swedish massage are:
- Effleurage: Gliding strokes with the palms
- Petrissage: Kneading, squeezing motions
- Tapotement: Tapping to ease tension
- Friction: To create heat and stimulate nerves
- Vibration: To relax muscles
- Hot Stone Massage: With this technique, hot stones are placed on various parts of the body. The heat and pressure from the stones alleviates muscle tension without the hard strokes of some other massage types. It is often used to ease back pain and for stress-relief.
- Prenatal Massage: Also known as “pregnancy massage," this massage type can help pregnant women to handle the stresses that come with carrying a baby. Your body is specially positioned to ensure comfort; this may mean lying on your side or on a special table with a space for your belly. The extra weight of pregnancy can cause knee problems and other joint issues; pregnancy massage can help to relieve those problems as well as cramps and muscular discomfort. The massage therapist will know the places that are likely to be sore and will focus on them.
The Spa at the Downtown Athletic Club employs three certified massage therapists who specialize in deep tissue, Swedish, prenatal, hot stone, stress relief and myofascial-release massage. You do not have to be a member of the DAC to book a massage.
Whether you’ve been working hard with your new exercise routine and want to reward yourself with a relaxing massage, or you’re an athlete needing relief from sore muscles, our massage therapists can help. Contact the DAC today to schedule your massage or click here to schedule one online.