Swedish Massage

Swedish MassageMassage therapy is a technique which is then used in complementary and alternative medicine practices for centuries. There are well over 30 different techniques in massage therapy.

One of those is Swedish massage which refers to a variety of techniques specifically designed to relax the muscles through the application of pressure against deeper muscles and bones. This technique was developed in the 1700 by a Swedish doctor named Per henrik Ling.

The technique of Swedish massage uses five styles of long flowing strokes. These five basic strokes are sliding or gliding, kneading, rhythmic tapping, cross fiber and rhythmic shaking. Research has shown that it is helpful for individuals who have poor circulation.

Swedish massage has been shown to shorten the recovery time off muscle strains by flushing the tissues of the lactic acid, uric acid and other metabolic wastes that build up during an injury. This increase in circulation to the area that has been injured happens without increasing the load on the heart. Swedish massage also helps to stimulate the skin and nervous system and reduces both emotional and physical stress. In fact, some psychologists suggest a regular program of Swedish massage for stress management.

Effleurage, or a sliding or gliding, is the technique most individuals associate with massage in general and with Swedish massage in particular. While doing this technique the masseuse makes use of a long and sweeping strokes that cover more than one area of the body. Although it does make the individual feel like his muscles are being broken down the purpose is actually to connect one part of the body to the others and is always done in the direction toward the heart.

She makes the muscles relax and friction is used to make the area to be treated warmed up. Where other massage techniques may use warm stones or heated towels the Swedish massage therapist makes use of a friction technique by rubbing the palms of her hands vigorously on the surface of the skin or by rubbing her palms together and then laying them on the skin.

Petrissage, is the act of kneading and squeezing the muscles of the body. This technique does not target or focus on any particular part but process allows for deeper and more penetrating affects of the massage.

Tapottement, sometimes called rhythmic tapping, our strokes better aim to energize the area of the body that is being treated. This is a technique that is done by chopping the area with the sides of the hands or hitting it rhythmically with the cops or fisted hand depending upon the desired results and the strength of the masseuse.

Traction involves pulling at the arms and legs and, interestingly, sometimes at the head. The act of pulling will stretch the muscles and is always on as the last part of her routine in order to stretch muscles that have already been relaxed and warmed up so that no injury occurs.

The last technique a Swedish massage therapists will use is called vibration. This is used to shake the area op that is being treated and done by moving the heel of the hand and sometimes the fingers forward and backward across the skin to loosen the muscles of a particular area.

All of these Swedish massage techniques are accomplished under the professional hands of a certified therapists. While some of these techniques may be tried at home they should be done with care and never over areas that are injured, bruised, infected or have an open wound.

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