Some read, some watch television and some sit down with a crossword. But few pursuits are as relaxing as a massage.
Healing Massage Therapies
Massages not only spell the ultimate in relaxation, but they have many healing attributes too. A massage is increasingly being considered as a therapy and is among the top healing treatments for depression, arthritis, insomnia, stress-related ailments, diabetes, degenerative diseases and migraines, amongst others.
A massage improves circulation, giving body parts an oxygen boost and rejuvenating them. It helps increase immunity, keeps muscles supple and, of course, helps with stress-release. And we all know how stress can create hormonal imbalances. So, a bit of kneading and tapping can be your answer to host of hormonal problems.
There are many types of massage therapies in the world. Some of them date back to thousands of years and are based on ancient scientific knowledge. Here are some of the most popular massage therapies:
Swedish Massage Therapy
This is done on the superficial muscular layers with strokes that produce friction, compression and vibration. It stimulates blood circulation and helps in ridding the body of toxins. It is said to improve metabolism and ease muscular tension.
Thai Massage Therapy
Be prepared for some compression and stretches. A Thai message is relatively strenuous and works on pressure points. The masseuse will put pressure on sen or energy lines of your body. This is done not only through hands but also through elbows, feet and knees.
The underlying principle of this therapy is that there are thousands of sens in our body. Energy flows through these sens. So, all ailments happen when there are blockages in sens. A Thai massage thus identifies blocked sens and helps in recovering from an ailment.
Essential oils are used along with a gentle massage to stimulate the olfactory glands. This triggers our senses to give us a happy and serene state of mind. Such unwinding relieves the body of stress and stress-related diseases like hypertension, insomnia, aches and sores.
This entails the use of stones. The stones used are cold sedimentary stones and warm basalt ones. Hot stones work on body stiffness through stimulating the circulatory system. Cold stones aid in cases of inflammation. The result: rejuvenation and re-energisation.
This oriental form of massage works on acupuncture points. The key to unblocking, here, is a set of meridians of our body to which pressure is applied. This leads to free flow of chi or life energy. Shiatsu therapists believe that this massage boosts the immune system, mental faculties and eases pain.
Ayurvedic Massage Therapy
Many people swear by the magic of ayurvedic massages. Here, the pressure points are called nilas. Abhyanga is the general ayurvedic massage therapy. Our body is managed by kapha, pitta and vata and any imbalance causes disorders.
Warm oil and herbs are often used along with light massage strokes to rekindle the prana or life force along your body.
Besides detoxifying, tackling stress and depression, this massage also strengthens your body and immune system. And it is good for the skin, too!
Go ahead and indulge. Most of us are so busy taking care of others that we hardly have time for ourselves. Lie down and let somebody else pamper you for a change.