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Massage not only feels wonderful, it has many therapeutic benefits. Some massage benefits include, promoting relaxation, decreasing pain, decreasing muscle stiffness and soreness, eliminating toxins in the body and increasing a persons overall well-being. Massage can be relaxing as well as invigorating. Massage is also known to increase the circulation of blood and flow of lymph. The direct mechanical effect of rhythmically applied manual pressure and movement used in massage can dramatically increase the rate of blood flow. The facilitation of blood flow carries nutrients and oxygen to the tissues and carries away the wastes and toxins. So, it is easy to understand why good circulation is so important to our health and why massage can be so beneficial for the entire body due to its effect on circulation alone.
Massage and Fitness
Massage helps to eliminate lactic acid build-up by five times or normal resting alone. It reduces muscle stiffness and breaks up muscle adhesions. Knowing about the physiological effects of massage makes it possible to better understand the health and fitness benefits of massage. What takes place under a massage therapist’s hands has profound importance for those interested in health and fitness — in “tuning up” their bodies. In every sport or form of exercise, massage can help. By helping to reduce physiological fatigue and aid recovery from the exertion of working out or playing, massage enables training better, with longer, more effective workouts, thus facilitating better performance and preventing injury.
Massage and Stress
The relationship of stress and illness is of interest to anyone maintaining their health. We all have stress in our daily lives relating to work, family, environment, and society. Stress causes the release of hormones that create vasoconstriction — vessel shrinking — and reduced circulation. Affected by stress, the heart works harder, breathing becomes rapid and shallow, and digestion slows. Nearly every body process is degraded. Users of massage therapy as a healing tool quickly realize that they have found a form of drugless therapy. Headaches, back and neck pain, digestive disorders, arthritis, wrist and elbow pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, sciatica and minor aches are some of the problems that can respond to massage therapy. Massage can have an excellent effect on nervous, stressed out people who have been dependent on their pharmacy for rest and relaxation.
What To Expect On The First Massage
The first appointment generally begins with the massage therapist asking what prompted you to get a massage, your current physical condition, medical history, lifestyle, stress level, and painful areas. The massage therapist may ask you about your health goals and what you hope the massage will do to help you achieve those goals.
For a full-body massage, you will be asked to remove clothing to your level of comfort. Undressing takes place in private, and a sheet, towel or gown is provided for draping. The therapist will undrape only the part of your body being massaged, ensuring that your modesty is respected at all times. Your massage will take place in a comfortable atmosphere and on a cushioned table. You should expect a peaceful, relaxing experience.