Swedish massage techniques used include kneading, gliding, rocking and cross-fiber friction to dissolve muscle knots. Swedish relaxation massage focuses on promoting relaxation to the body and mind, and increasing blood circulation so the body can repair and heal itself. Individuals suffering from insomnia may benefit from this form of massage.
What is Swedish Massage?
Considered the foundation for Western massage therapy in general, Swedish Massage focuses on the physiology and anatomy, as opposed to the energy-based principles of the Asian style of massage. Interestingly, the term “Swedish Massage”—while commonly used in North America—is actually somewhat inaccurate, since it was neither invented by a Swede nor does it originate in the country of Sweden. In fact, the proper name is “Classic Massage,” though this term is mostly used only in Europe. Swedish or (Classic) Massage was developed sometime during the 1800’s. The five strokes used in the technique were based on the work of Peter Ling, founder of the Royal Gymnastic Institute in Sweden, though Ling himself had nothing to do with developing Classic Massage. The technique and therapy itself is credited to have been systemized and developed by Dutch medical practitioner Johan Georg Mezger.
What is the purpose of Swedish Massage and how does it work?
Your certified massage therapist will have you lay under a flat sheet on the table with your head positioned in a cradle. This is to ensure that your spine remains neutral and to offer you the most comfort during the massage. Using special massage oils on your skin, your therapist will perform a series of strokes to ease tension and soothe aches and pains in muscles and tissues. Many times you may experience minor or even severe muscle knots, causing pain and stress to your body. Swedish Massage helps to eliminate these issues by thoroughly working into the muscles.
Your massage therapist will knead, stretch and tap during the massage, in addition to performing effleurage. Effleurage is a gliding motion with the hands, and may be applied over the face, throat, hands, back, chest, arms and legs. Depending on what your therapist is trying to achieve with the treatment, effleurage may either be a gentle, light touch, or deeper strokes, applying greater pressure to ease pain in the fascia and muscles. Effleurage is also used to soothe in between deeper, more powerful strokes.
Other benefits of Swedish Massage include improved blood circulation, muscle flexibility, an increase in blood oxygen levels, and a significant decrease in muscle toxins. It also lowers blood pressure. In fact, the gliding strokes used during the massage actually follow the path of blood as it returns to the heart, which helps with deep relaxation.
In 2010, the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine performed a study on 53 volunteers, all of whom received a 45-minute Swedish Massage session. Blood tests conducted before and after the therapy showed an increase in lymphocytes (white blood cells), a boost in the immune system, and decreased cortisol levels (stress hormones), in addition to a decrease in arginine vasopressin (the hormone which is known to increase cortisol).
If you are suffering from stress, sore muscles, arthritis, etc., you will benefit highly from regular therapy with Swedish Massage.
Our therapists at Unique Health & Wellness, Inc. are among the best in Edmonton, and we are here to serve you. If would like to book a Swedish relaxation massage or have any questions, do not hesitate to contact us at 780-938-8623 or firstname.lastname@example.org. We are here for you!