Swedish massage is the most commonly known type of massage today, where the main focus is to relax the body. It incorporates long gliding strokes (effleurage), kneading strokes (petrissage), friction, vibration and percussion techniques, flowing in the same direction of blood returning to the heart. Stretching and joint movements are sometimes incorporated to help increase range of motion. The goal of Swedish massage is to increase relaxation, reduce stress, improve circulation, lower muscle toxins, and relieve muscle tension.
Deep Tissue Massage:
Deep tissue massage is similar to Swedish massage but the pressure is greater and goes deeper into the layers of muscles. It is used to treat and improve those persistent knots that can cause chronic muscle tension and help alleviate muscle tightness. Deep Tissue massage may feel intense at times as the intension is to break up scar tissues and focus on the deepest layers of muscle tissue, tendons, and fascia. The pressure is adjusted to each client's tolerance.
Sports massage is designed to enhance athletic performance and recovery. Athletes of all types often overuse their muscles. This can causes strains, tears and imbalances in the soft muscle tissues. When these sports injuries are ignored they become more susceptible to further strain and injury. Sports massage is one way to encourage muscle repair after training by releasing tension and built up lactic acid in the overworked muscles. This allows new blood with oxygen and nutrients to return to the muscles promoting muscle repair and health. The massage specifics are exclusive to each athlete's sport of choice and often focus on a specific area that is bothersome. The major applications of Sports massage are promoting flexibility, eliminating fatigue, preventing injuries/ maintenance, increasing endurance, rehabilitation, event (i.e., pre-, inter-, and post-event) and assisting the athlete to perform their best.
Myofascial massage focuses on the connective/ myofascial tissues that surround muscle, nerves, blood vessels, and all organs of the body. Restrictions in the fascial tissues can cause problems such as pain, limited mobility, bad posture, etc. This technique is accomplished by applying traction to the skin and underlying tissues while slowly and gently pushing, pulling, and stretching fascial tissues to ease restrictions and breakup fascial adhesions (or fascial knots).
Trigger Point Therapy:
This technique focuses on deactivating trigger points. Trigger points are small, hyperirritable spots in muscles or connective tissues that can cause local pain or referral pains in a different location of the body. Trigger point therapy helps to relieve trigger points by manually applying ischemic compression techniques (deliberately increase the blockage of blood to an area so that, upon release, there will be a renewal of blood), deep friction, and stretching.
Pregnancy massage offers relief from some of the stresses women experience during pregnancy, including strain on the spine, hips, and legs. It can also provide relaxation and emotional relief. In the first few weeks of pregnancy, massage can be done with 'mom-to-be' lying on her stomach or back. Once the belly starts to grow larger, we then switch to side-lying or a reclined position, comfortably supported with pillows. The massage is gentle and relaxing; focusing on the neck, lower back, legs, feet, and general relaxation.
Post-pregnancy massage is provided during the weeks after delivery to help recondition areas stressed during the birth process. For women who have had cesarean sections, massage is used to help form healthy scar tissue as well as help with recovery.