What do you think of when considering the word massage? Have you had a bad experience with someone who wasn’t qualified to treat your dog? Or do you associate it with a luxurious day spa setting and consider it to be the ultimate indulgence?
Did you know that massage has a number of amazing health benefits on top of a feeling of relaxation? That’s right – recent studies have revealed that massage can actually improve your health!
Massage can successfully treat a range of disorders, including:
- back or neck pain
- soft tissue injuries
- chronic pain (including fibromyalgia)
- high blood pressure
- attention disorders.
One of the immediate benefits of massage is a feeling of deep relaxation and calm. This occurs because massage prompts the release of endorphins, the brain chemicals (neurotransmitters) that produce feelings of wellbeing. Levels of stress hormones, such as adrenalin, cortisol and norepinephrine, are reduced. Studies indicate that high levels of stress hormones impair the immune system.
If you are fairly active or have been inactive and are about to get back into exercise, massage will improve your performance and reduce the likelihood of you experiencing injuries. Massage will also improve your posture, range of motion and flexibility.
The key is finding the right therapist who is qualified and specialised in what you are seeking treatment for. For example, if you are a marathon runner or long distance cyclist go to a qualified sports massage therapist who can develop a treatment plan which will complement your training schedule and prepare you for key upcoming events.
Or if you have arthritis or fibromyalgia, go to a qualified remedial massage therapist who specialises in chronic pain who can develop a treatment plan tailored to your physiology which will initially reduce your pain and, in time, prevent your pain.
The right therapist will educate you about your physiology and teach you stretches and exercises you can do at home. The right therapist will liaise with health professionals regarding your condition and provide you with the latest research and information targeting your health goals.
The right therapist will leave you feeling healthier and happier.
What do you think – ready to take massage off the luxury list and add it to your health essentials?