Occupational hazards are hazards experienced at a workplace. Long working hours can take a toll on your physical, as well as mental health. Be it an off-site job or a desk job, body pain and fatigue is a common among working people. So, to get relief from mental and physical exhaustion, most of us prefer sleeping and pain killers as a solution. But, these preventive measures are not enough to mitigate the adverse effects of working for long hours in a workplace.
Massage therapy is one viable way to relieve yourself from the mental and physical stress caused to you by tiring working hours. The effects of massage therapy are not limited to relaxing the muscles and bones of the body, but a massage also eases stress.
In this article, we’ll primarily focus on how massage therapy can benefit psychological and physical occupational hazards.
Psychological occupational hazards and massage therapy
Psychological hazards in a workplace such as the the pressure resulting from the demands at job, interpersonal conflicts, life and career change, or organizational leadership can cause an imbalance in mental stability. Prolonged exposure to such issues can cause fatigue and exhaustion that can take a massive toll on your work and most importantly on your health. Stress leads to negative changes in behavior, mood, and body. These changes cause various health issues and leads to an increased risks of heart attack, high blood pressure, frequent headaches, anxiety, restlessness, and anger outbursts.
Massage therapy stimulates the release of a feel-good hormone called endorphins that help in lowering the blood pressure, cortisol, and helps manage the heart rate. Also, it stimulates the release of serotonin and dopamine, which induces a feeling of calmness that helps in tackling chronic stress. Adding massage therapy into your routine will make you look good, feel healthy, and ensure overall well being of your body.
Physical occupational hazards and massage therapy
Physical hazards in a workplace include harm caused to the body due to pressure, radiation, noise, and temperature. However physical hazards are not limited to these issues only. Injuries due to slips, trips, and falls in field jobs are counted among physical hazards in a workplace. Also, back pain, frozen shoulder, tired eyes, muscle tightness in hand and legs, and neck tension are some of the common physical issues of a working professional. Massage therapy can help in relieving muscle tightness in the back, neck, arms, and legs, and also increase the blood circulation in the body.
Massage therapy for psychological and physical occupational hazards
Various massage therapy styles like Swedish massage therapy, neuromuscular massage therapy, deep tissue massage, Shiatsu and Thai massage are available for relieving muscle tension and mental stress. These types of massages result in a relaxed, as well as an energized body. And, it is also beneficial for faster recovery from injuries to the joints and bones.
If you have been experiencing emotional or physical stress at your workplace, then massage therapy is the solution for you. Contact InHome Physical Therapy and Massage to book an appointment now.
Aging comes with its own issues. And, one of them is the inability to perform certain activities in way that you may have been able to perform when you were young. As the body becomes infirm, it is unable to withstand the stress from everyday physical activities. But, there is a way you can still keep your body healthy. Massage therapy is the solution. In this article, we’ll discuss the benefits of massage for seniors.
Geriatric massage is a type of massage therapy specially designed for seniors to address the needs of their aging bodies. This type of massage is helpful to improve and maintain overall health as the body ages. Geriatric massage not only helps to maintain physical health but also helps maintain mental health. It involves an application of gentle pressure, oil or lotion, and passive stretching, which allows working on the body without causing any friction to the skin. These techniques help a senior’s body in the following ways:
1) Removes Muscle Stiffness
Seniors are often unable to perform a lot of physical activities as their body starts to become infirm with the growing age. As a result, the muscles of the body tend to become stiff that prevents smooth movement of the body. Massage therapy can help to a large extent to improve blood flow and remove muscle stiffness.
2) Enhances Blood Circulation
Proper blood circulation is crucial for seniors as inadequate flow of blood can give birth to many health issues that may get severe overtime. Peripheral artery disease of legs, blood clotting, and diabetes are some of the health complications that are caused due to poor blood circulation. As massage therapy involves kneading, gentle stroking, and application of light pressure on various parts of the body, it helps in improving blood circulation in the body.
3) Improves Balance
With old age, the bones become weak and lose its strength. As a result, many seniors mention falling as one of the major concerns. Due to weak bones, it becomes difficult to maintain proper balance. Massage therapy helps increase the blood flow and also improves proprioception. This effect of massage therapy, in turn, helps in improving balance and reduces the chances of falling.
4) Reduces the Pain of Arthritis
Massage therapy helps treat arthritis. While it can’t fully cure arthritis, it helps in relieving joint pain. With the help of various techniques used to remove the stiffness of muscles and tissues, massage therapy improves the blood flow to the joints thereby relieving pain.
5) Combats Stress, Anxiety, and Depression
Massage therapy helps in lowering cortisol levels in the body upto 50%. It also helps in increasing the levels of serotonin and dopamine that aids in stabilizing the mood. As a result, massage therapy is a proven treatment for reducing stress, anxiety, and depression.
At Inhome Physical Therapy and Massage, we have specialized massages therapies for seniors. Contact us for more information about geriatric massage or book an appointment for massage sessions at your home.
Sports and similar physical activities are immensely tiring. Cramps and aches are a part and parcel of playing sports. They are common in a sports person’s life. Often such issues hamper other necessary physical activities like training sessions as they take a lot of time to heal. But, with regular sport massage, cramps and aches can be dealt with. If you are a sports freak, then regular sports massage can help you recover from any muscle cramps and aching limbs.But, before you go ahead, here are a few things you need to know before getting a sports massage.
Learn About the Different Types of Massage
If you are thinking of getting a sports massage, then you should be specific about which one will suit you the best. Different types of sports or physical activities involve different parts of the body. So, it is essential to figure out which type of massage will be beneficial for you. For instance, Swedish massage focuses on moisturizing the skin or a hot stone massage has a calming effect, but none of them have anything to do with releasing tight muscles. So, you must be very careful about the type of you sign up for. Consulting a massage therapist may help you choose the right one.
Schedule Your Massage Appointment Wisely
If you are new to massage, you must never book your first appointment a day before your sports event. For instance, if you are supposed to participate in a race tomorrow, then scheduling an appointment today may not be a good idea. As you are new to massage, you’ll need time to deal with its after effects. In certain types of massage you may need time to rest and relax to let the healing effects of the massage do the job.. You must always schedule a massage appointment a week before or after the sports event. Getting a massage therapy 48 hours priors to the big day will not allow your body to perform efficiently.
Treat Yourself With a Massage After Intense Physical Activity
Your body needs relaxation after intense workout sessions. A massage helps soothe the body muscles and helps your body to recover faster. If you are a veteran, you can schedule a massage appointment before or after 48 hours of the physical activity. But, if you are a newbie, you must wait for 3 to 4 days after your performance for a massage session. Sportsmen, who are new to massage may not be able to experience the benefit from massage if done immediately after the event, instead you will end up feeling uncomfortable.
Inquire About Your Therapist Before Booking an Appointment
Before scheduling a massage, you must always inquire appropriately about the massage therapist. You must ask them questions about their work experience, education, licenses, and frequency of working with sportspeople. Also, you must seek referrals. This helps you know about the experience of other people with the massage therapist. Gathering all this information will help you make an informed choice.
Sip Adequate Water Before Getting a Massage
You must be well hydrated before you hop on the massage table. Insufficient water content may make your body feel dehydrated and that may lead to the stiffening of your muscles. Undergoing a massage in such a condition may not help your muscles to relax, rather it will intensify muscle soreness. So, you need to make sure that you have enough water before a massage session to help your body enjoy the benefits of massage therapy.
Need a sports massage? Consult InHome Physical Therapy and Massage today.
Many people use massage therapy as a part of their ongoing health and wellness routine. But, do you know it can help mentally challenged people as well? Massage therapy can help people suffering from dementia, autism or those with traumatic brain injury (TBI). Let’s see how.
How Does Hand - Massage Help In Dementia?
Many elders who suffer from dementia gladly accept hand massage therapy. Even five minutes of hand massage decreases cortisol levels in your body and gives you physiological relaxation. Hand massage therapy helps decrease cortisol, which is a stress hormone produced by the adrenal glands. The decrease in cortisol level enhances your sleep quality and immune system. Massage therapy also increases serotonin, which is a neurochemical that regulates mood and subdues anxiety and irritability.
How Does Massage Help A Cerebral Palsy Patient?
Cerebral Palsy is a term that represents conditions characterized by various motor disorders, like postural dysfunction and muscle coordination challenges. One of the main reasons why massage therapy is preferred for patients who have cerebral palsy is that massage sessions help patients sleep better. It is considered a legitimate therapy option for cerebral palsy patients as the treatment is based on relaxing tight muscles. Massage therapy helps patients who have dyskinetic cerebral palsy (uncontrolled choreal or slowing of body movements) by producing a parasympathetic response that helps curtail involuntary movements.
How Does Massage Help In Autism?
There are a wide variety of treatments used for children with autism. Massage therapy is increasingly becoming one of them It is observed that autistic children respond positively to massage treatment. Massage therapy gives relaxation to autistic kids as massaging motions are applied on the arms, hands, neck, legs, feet, and torso. The treatment helps them fight with anxiety and fatigue while also improving sleep and energy levels. Moreover, massage therapy is effective in lessening the severity of autism and helping develop their thinking and creative abilities.
How Does Massage Therapy Help In Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)?
Massage therapy is an excellent form of treatment for patients who suffer from Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). Massage therapy helps in a patient’s recovery and maintenance plan especially if they have been in a coma for a prolonged period. Massage therapy helps patients with Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) in the following ways:
- The therapy increases blood and lymph circulation
- It reduces contracture or stiffness
- It calms the patient’s mood as they adjust to a new normal
- It maintains comfort and mobility if a patient suffers from a prolonged injury or ailments
Massage therapy is a powerful, yet underutilized method to address the urgent need of mentally challenged people. Approach a massage therapist if you want to find alternatives to medication to ease the behavioral symptoms of family or friends who are mentally challenged.
Massage therapy has evolved as a powerful tool for combating the increasing presence of mental health conditions these days. Massage therapy is seen as an alternative treatment option for mentally exhausted people. It reduces the level of anxiety and depression by reducing the amount of cortisol and adrenaline in the body. People are now turning to alternative medical treatment options and seeking positive outcomes from massage therapy. Let’s see how the power of touch acts as a boon for mentally exhausted people.
Massage For Mental Fatigue (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome)
The causes of mental or emotional fatigue are an unhealthy diet, depression, overwork, improper sleep and side effects of certain medicines. Daily life activities can create tension in your muscles that can affect your mind. Massage therapy helps treat patients who have the symptoms of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Deep tissue massage sessions redress the natural balance of their body by preventing further activation of stress-related hormones. It improves blood circulation and promotes proper lymphatic drainage.
Massage For Stress Reduction
Mental stress produces various physiological symptoms that can affect your physical and psychological health. Cortisol is a stress hormone that can suppress your immune system, increase blood pressure and can lead to other mental disorders. Massage therapy can be an effective way to break the stress cycle and to reduce cortisol levels to bring a patient’s body back to hormonal equilibrium.
Massage For Alleviating Depression
Massage therapy helps alleviate depressive symptoms in those people who suffer from fibromyalgia. Stiffness in your muscles and connective tissues can cause pain and limit your movement. Massage therapy helps relieve this tension in your muscles and connective tissues by increasing the circulation of blood flow in your body. In the case of depression, massage therapy helps alleviate the physical symptoms associated with it. Massage therapy releases dopamine and serotonin which are associated with boosting the mind and hence decreases the level of depression.
Massage Therapy - The Healing Power of Touch
Massage therapy has evolved into an additional treatment option for mentally exhausted people by reducing cortisol and adrenaline levels. One remarkable benefit of massage therapy is its healing power of touch that induces oxytocin release. Research shows that oxytocin is the love or bonding hormone that gives us the sense of belonging, trust, and stability. It can decrease social anxiety, depression, and reduce fear in people with post-traumatic disorder.
Massage therapy has been a boon for curing mental fatigue, anxiety, and depression. Consult your doctor and a certified massage therapist to see how massage can fit into your overall treatment plan.
Running is one of the most popular forms of sporting activity worldwide. Although running has many health benefits, runners also face running injuries like blisters, runner’s knee, shin splints, plantar fasciitis and many more. These common running injuries typically affect the lower limbs. Let us have a look at four of the most commonly occurring running injuries and how they can be treated through physical therapy:
You may not know, but 40% of marathon runners suffer from blisters. The heels, toes, and balls of your feet are the most commonly affected areas during running. Blisters usually appear on feet as it is the area that often encounters repetitive abrasion while running. Blisters are caused by prolonged friction that produces a force between the layers of skin. If left untreated, blisters can lead to serious medical issues such as ulceration and infection. If you develop a painful blister during a marathon, then stop at one of the medical stations. They treat your blister and hopefully you will be able to get back in the race.
2) Runner’s Knee
Do you know, runner’s knee affects up to 10% of all runners at some stage? Runner’s knee is also referred to as IlioTibial Band Friction Syndrome. In this condition, you feel pain on the outer side of your knee joint. If left untreated, this knee pain may radiate up to your thigh and may exacerbate by running. The knee pain caused by runner’s knee is only present during running and settles when the person rests. Treatment for runner’s knee include physical therapy and runner’s knee exercises. You can modify the frequency or intensity of your activity and also use a runner’s knee brace.
3) Plantar Fasciitis
Plantar Fasciitis is the condition where there is inflammation of the Plantar fascia - a fibrous sheath that runs through most of the length of the sole of your foot. Plantar Fasciitis is a common cause of heel pain in runners. In this condition, pain usually radiates inside of the sole of your foot. Foot pain usually occurs with any physical activity and is typically present in the morning. Plantar Fasciitis can be settled with conservative treatment, such as physical therapy. You can apply ice packs directly to your skin and have anti-inflammatory drugs prescribed by your doctor.
4) Achilles Tendinopathy
Due to rigorous exercise and running, your tendon, which forms the lower part of the calf muscles, degenerates. In such a condition, your tendon may lose its normal tensile strength and may be liable to rupture with continued running. The affected tendon may appear thickened compared to the unaffected side. It is recommended to take rest from sporting activities for up to three months as the collagen tissue takes three months to mature (which your body produces) to repair the tissue. You can wear Achilles tendon support during training to ease stress on the Achilles tendon.
The intensity, duration, and frequency of your running sessions should be monitored. Try to maintain your muscle strength and flexibility through physical therapy or regular strengthening and stretching sessions. In-home massage therapy services can provide you with the best treatment in case if you face any running injury.
Back pain is a common complaint among many people. Every individual aged between 30 to 50 has complained about it at some point or the other in their life. When people suffer from back pain, most of us generally seek help and bits of advice from people around us, unless it becomes unbearable. Other than the medical professionals, very few people know causes behind back problems and how to get appropriate treatment. As a result, people tend to believe in the persisting misconceptions, which gives birth to several myths about back pain. Here are some back pain myths for your information:
Myth 1: "Always Sit Straight "
You don’t have to sit straight always. Though slouching and slumping is not suitable for your back as it ruins your posture, sitting straight can also aggravate back pain. Sitting straight for long hours can put more strain on your back. So, instead of sitting up straight and hurting your back, sit in a position that feels comfortable and does not ruin your posture.
Myth 2: "Lifting Heavy Things is Bad for your Back"
Well, it is not about lifting heavy things. The pain arises when you do it in the wrong way, or you try to lift things that are way too heavy for you. In fact, lifting heavy weights strengthens your back muscles and does not cause pain. But, remember to follow the proper technique while lifting heavy weights. A physical therapist can help you figure out the right technique.
Myth 3: "Bed Rest is the Best Cure for a Backache"
Lying on the bed for too long when you have pain in the back is not recommended. Doctors usually recommend bed rest for 2-3 days followed by moderate exercise routines. Resting more than required makes the back muscles weak and can intensify the back pain. Also, inactivity will aggravate your pain, as the back muscles become stiff.
Myth 4: "Exercise Causes Back Pain"
Exercise doesn’t cause back pain. Vigorous exercise does. Regular exercise prevents back pain and also contributes to a healthy lifestyle. Doctors also recommended people to do gentle exercises to help avoid back pain. They also recommend mild exercises for patients suffering from lower back pain.
Myth 5: "Hot Bath Mitigates the Back Pain"
Taking a hot bath or using a hot bag feels good. But, taking a hot shower right after an injury is not a good idea. Heat may increase the inflammation by opening up blood vessels, which can cause more pain. It is advised to use a cold compress instead of a hot bath.
Myth 6: "Back Pain is a Part of Aging"
Back pain is not a part of aging. It is true that the body becomes susceptible to back problem at old age. But, regular exercise can keep back problems at bay. People experience back pain because of some underlying issue or by overdoing some physical activity.
It is always a better choice to seek professional consultation if you are experiencing back pain, instead of believing in myths. Paying attention to back pain myths may worsen your situation or make you worry unnecessarily. You can also opt for physical therapy or massage therapy if you’re experiencing back problems. For more information about back pain and its treatments, contact InHome Physical and Massage Therapy.
Pain is way your body informs you that something isn’t right and needs attention. Once the problem is addressed and is taken care of well, the pain disappears. But, it isn’t the case with chronic pain, it keeps you bothering for days, months, or even years. It affects your day to day life, and also causes mental distress.
Various factors can cause chronic pain. Past injuries or surgeries, migraines, back problem, arthritis, fibromyalgia or nerve damage can be some of the reasons behind chronic pain. If you have been experiencing chronic pain lately, what measure have you taken to cure it? Some painkillers or ointments maybe? Although there is no cure for chronic pain, there is an alternative that helps to treat chronic pain. Massage therapy can help alleviate the pain and get your life back on the track. In this article, we’ll be taking you through the two most common conditions fibromyalgia and arthritis and how massage therapy is helpful.
Effects of Massage Therapy on Fibromyalgia Patients
Fibromyalgia is a common chronic musculoskeletal pain, which causes widespread pain and tenderness in the body. It occurs in people of all ages including children. People with fibromyalgia have high levels of pain, as well as psychological distress. Here are few benefits of massage therapy for fibromyalgia patients:
- Massage therapy helps in relaxing and improves the quality of sleep. It is great to have a massage session in the evening as it will help the body to repair and rejuvenate over the night.
- Massage therapy helps to restore strength and vitality in the body, and aids strengthening lethargic muscles.
- The relaxation session of a massage therapy helps to relieve mental stress.
- Massage therapy improves the blood flow to the brain, thereby, helping the fibromyalgia patients to get relief from headaches.
- It diminishes the effects of anxiety and depression, which includes hormonal fluctuations and interference in appetite.
To know more about fibromyalgia and how massage therapy can aid, read this blog.
Benefits of Massage Therapy for Arthritis
Arthritis is not a single disease. It is an umbrella term that is used informally to refer to joint pains or joint disorders. Like fibromyalgia, arthritis is also a reason for common chronic pain among people of all ages. Massage therapy is beneficial for arthritis patients in the following ways:
- Massage therapy helps to realign the posture of the body, which will reduce unequal weight distribution throughout the body.
- Massage therapy positively impacts the joint structures and improves joint flexibility as it facilitates the removal of the collagen tissue.
- Massage therapy helps in reducing the stiffness in joints, thereby, relieving the pain.
- Massage therapy successfully reduces swelling of an affected joint. Various strokes of massage help in pushing the extracellular fluid in the limb, thereby, reducing swelling.
Apart from massage therapy, physical exercises are also helpful for arthritis patients. Read our blog to know about various therapeutic exercises for arthritis.
You can now enjoy the benefits of massage therapy in the comfort of your home. Yes, you read it right! InHome Physical and Massage therapy brings you professional massage therapists right at your doorstep. Book your appointment now!
Most of us are aware of the effects of massage on our mind and body. It relaxes our muscles and induces a feeling of goodness. But, very few are knowledgeable about how it affects our heart health. Scientific studies have shown that massage therapy is not only beneficial for treating physical injuries, but also for cardiovascular complications. How? Here’s the answer:
Reduces Blood Pressure
Blood carries essential nutrients and oxygen to the organs, tissue, and muscles of the body. Massage therapy helps in improving the blood flow, which in turn helps maintain heart health.. Massage therapy involves many techniques that squeezes, rubs, presses and stretches various muscles in the body. A massage also induces a feel-good hormone and helps in reducing stress. As the stress levels go down, the blood pressure also decreases and is maintained.
Helps Recover from Open Heart Surgery
Massage therapy is beneficial for people recovering from open heart surgery. The collaborative approach of a physiotherapist and a massage therapist can do wonders for open heart surgery patients. After undergoing open heart surgery, it is crucial for the patients to have their shoulders and their chest in correct position. The techniques used by a physiotherapist helps to keep the chest open by strengthening the back muscles. But, the muscles in the front are still tight; massage therapy can help in loosening the muscles of the chest. So, together physiotherapy and massage therapy can help to get the correct posture back.
Eases Pain From Contracture
Stroke patients often seek the help of a massage therapist to alleviate pain from contracture. Hardening of muscles and insufficient supply of blood is typical in case of stroke patients. Massage therapy boosts the blood circulation and encourages oxygenated blood supply, removes toxins, and increases mobility. It also helps to relax patients which leads to a restful sleep.
Reduces Stress and Anxiety
Heart diseases are often a result of long-term stress and anxiety. Increased levels of stress and anxiety increases the level of hormones like cortisol and adrenaline, which causes a rise in the breathing rate, heart rate, and blood pressure. Massages therapy is a proven way to reduce the stress and anxiety levels, and improve the quality of sleep. It helps reduce the tension by bringing the levels of cortisol and adrenaline back to normal.
Though massage therapy cannot completely cure heart problems, it can very well help reduce the suffering. After all, it is better to lie down on a massage bed and relax than lying impatiently on the hospital bed. At InHome Physical and Massage therapy, we offer physical and massage therapies to patients of all age. And, you don’t even have to move out of your house. So, if you are looking for reliable massage or physical therapists, the book your appointment today.
Does your desk job cause immense discomfort in the form of back or neck pain? Probably it your posture or the height of the chair or desk that causes this issue. But, if you do not pay heed to the problem, then it may worsen. Sitting in the wrong posture such as hunching your back and slumping in your seat can cause back, neck, and shoulder muscles to tighten. Research shows that if people doing desk jobs perform regular stretching exercises, it can help reduce back, neck, and shoulder pain. Stretching and frequent breaks in between work not only relaxes your muscles but also increases your productivity. So, here are five stretching exercises, that exercise therapy professional recommend to desk job workers:
1) Chest Stretch
Being hunched over a desk for an entire day can cause pain in your back and neck. But, you can gain some relief by performing chest stretch. You can perform a chest stretch while sitting, as well as standing. If you are in a seated position, stretch your arms in the air and lace your fingers together. Lift your hands up until you feel a stretch in your chest and hold it for 10-20 seconds.
2) Upper Back Stretch
When you work in the same posture for hours, the upper back muscle tighten, causing pain. Performing an upper back stretch can help you loosen the muscles and also improve your posture. All you need to do is stretch your arms and rotate your hands with the palms facing away from each other. Cross your arms in such a way that the palms are pressed together. Then contract the abs, round the back and relax your head as you reach away. Hold this position for 10-20 seconds.
3) Torso Stretch
Desk job workers often find themselves in a hunched position, which causes pain in the back. Exercises like torso stretch will stretch all the muscles in your back, arms and shoulders. It is pretty easy to perform. All you have to do is as you just have to lace your fingers together and stretch them with the palm facing the ceiling. Take a deep breath as you stretch, then exhale and open your arms and come back to your normal posture. Repeat this 7-8 times for relief.
4) Forearm Stretch
Typing for a long time causes tension in your forearm muscles. Simple exercises can help you relax your forearm muscles and your wrists. Stretch your arms out and turn the hand down so that the fingers face the ground. Now, gently pull the fingers as though pulling something towards you. You’ll experience a stretch in your forearms and your fingers. Hold it for 10-20 seconds.
5) Seated Hip Stretch
Sitting in the same place for long hours tightens your hip muscles. This stretch can help you open up your hip and glute muscles. You have to perform this exercise in a sitting position. Cross the left ankle over the right knee and sit straight. Keeping the back straight, gently lean forward until you feel a stretch in your torso. Hold it for 10-20 seconds and repeat with your right ankle over the left knee.
At InHome physical therapy and massage, we understand your hectic schedules, which often come in way of personal care. If you have been suffering from back, neck, and shoulder pain due to your monotonous routine, then contact us today. We offer physical and exercise therapy, as well as massage therapy, in the comfort of your home.
Massage therapy was used as a healing method in ancient history. It began as a sacred system of natural healing. The history of massage has its footprint in both the eastern and western civilization, where our ancient ancestors found that massage could heal injuries, relieve pain, and cure illnesses. Today, massage therapy is an alternative method of healthcare practiced across the world. Here’s how massage therapy has emerged as a relaxing and therapeutic practice today.
How Massage Therapy Evolved
Egyptians discovered reflexology in 2500 BCE. In reflexology, pressure is applied to reflex zones on the feet and hands in order to relieve pain. Written records of the benefits of massage therapy were discovered in China in 2700 BCE. The history of massage in China is based on the principle that diseases arise due to an imbalance in your physiological systems. These techniques of Chinese massage therapy include acupuncture and acupressure that helps to regulate energy harmoniously throughout the body. Athletes in Greece derived massage therapy from Eastern philosophies and practices. It progressed in Greece in the eighth century BCE. The primary goal of massage therapy in Greece was to keep the bodies of athletes in peak condition before competitions. In Greece, massage therapy was employed using herbs and aromatic oils as beauty treatments on their skin.
Massage Therapy in the West
The history of massage therapy in the West takes us back to the colonial times. In America, massage therapy came into practice in the 1900s. The progress in the massage therapy industry was influenced by national and world events, advances in science and medicine, and religious and social movements. The following were the key contributors to the success of massage therapy that we see today.
Rubber was used in America in colonial times. It had a great influence on massage therapy. The basic techniques of using rubber were simple but were modified to produce different effects. Massage therapy using rubber includes joint movements to increase a wide range of motion to release muscle tensions.
In America, during the 1900s, magnetism was introduced into massage therapy. Magnets were used by passing them over the body with or without contact. In several cases, light touch and strokes were used to stimulate vital energy.
Hydropathy was introduced to massage therapy a few decades later. Bath attendants would use rubbing and friction as a part of the healing treatment. This led to the origin of spa services today, such as body wraps and scrubs.
Massage therapy went through a period of transformation between 1970 and 2000. It was looked upon as a medium to revive the body with natural healing. Apart from that, new approaches from Asia - including acupressure from China, Shiatsu from Japan and Ayurvedic massage from India - were followed in the US. The need for an alternative medicine contributed to the development of massage therapy that included diverse massage techniques. The history of massage has been instrumental to the current methods of treatment, with the benefits of massage therapy now clearer to all now than ever before.
Photo Credit: Nick J Webb
Massage therapy includes everything from surgical recovery support to foot massages (yes, like the ones performed at a nail salon!). As the demand for massage therapy grows, massage therapists are increasingly catering to this demand by providing unique services like mobile massages to their clients. So what does the future of massage therapy hold? We believe it is exciting and full of possibilities!
Courses on massage therapy have changed over the years, from a one-year diploma offered in private vocational schools in 1935 into a two-year degree program offered in colleges accredited by the Canadian Massage Therapy Council for Accreditation (CMTCA). If all goes as planned, by 2020, the National Accreditation Planning Committee will review and accredit "all programs in the regulated provinces and up to 12 programs in the (currently) non-regulated provinces." It goes without saying that this will enhance and streamline course content to a much higher quality that we see today. Additionally, this will further increase the credibility of massage therapy courses and programs and therefore see a growth in students opting for these courses.
As more and more people look towards alternative, non-pharmacological interventions for pain management, there will be a higher demand for massage therapists. Massage therapy is also the fastest growing sector for the spa industry, which itself is experiencing a high growth rate of an estimated 15-16 percent per year. The end result - there are going to be jobs aplenty for massage therapists in the next five to ten years.
Personal Care Massage
Personal care styles of massage are beginning to converge in medical spas. Medical spas provide similar services as traditional spas but while employing licensed healthcare providers, including massage therapists. Treatments at medical spas will address not only beauty and wellness enhancement, but also various health problems. Therefore, medical spas will increasingly require practitioners with the skill base to accomplish spas’ advertised healthcare massage services.
Thanks to the growing demand, massage franchise businesses are likely to grow in the coming decades. Many massage therapists will take advantage of established massage therapy brands to leverage their processes and business acumen while making the most of their skills and qualifications.
Massage therapy is a risky industry due to the amount of physical contact required in everyday business activities. There could be a chance that a client may misconstrue a routine procedure as something inappropriate. Additionally, incorrectly performed massage or unfortunate incidents may lead to accidental injuries during therapy. Thus, the future may see an increase in more customized insurance policies.
The future of massage therapy is bright. If you’re looking to make a career or start a business in massage therapy, contact InHome Physical Therapy and Massage, and we’ll help you with some more insights!
Massage therapy helps to keep an athlete’s body healthy and toned for an extended period. Many of the young athletes invest a considerable amount of money in their health, well-being, and physical training. But, seldom they know that massage therapy contributes much to prepare, soothe, and strengthen their muscles for optimal athletic performance in the future. Massage therapy provides many benefits to young athletes. It helps release muscle tensions, spasms, and pain. Let’s have a look at the five ways how sports massage therapy can benefit young athletes:
1. Reduces Muscles Tension and Spasms
If your muscles become stiff and sore due to an injury or rigorous training, then massage therapy helps alleviate the pain by releasing the tension built up in tissues and stripping the muscles of any toxins causing stiffness. Furthermore, massage therapy tones the muscles by stimulating natural reflexes found within muscle fibres.
2. Helps Treat Injuries
Injuries are common among athletes. Young athletes are always exposed to the risk of sprains, strains, and collisions. Massage therapy can treat the flexibility of muscles in case of injuries to high-risk body areas like the knee, lower back, and the rotator cuff. Also, going for a massage lessens the possibility of injury apart from helping injured young athletes to recover faster.
3. Prevents Adhesions
When a muscle tears, a fibrous tissue develops and that is known as adhesion. Adhesion in the muscle fibers restricts the muscle’s full range of motion. Transverse massage strokes prevents adhesions from occurring in between muscle fibres. If the adhesions build up then it can lead to muscle knots and further problems. Massage therapy can release these adhesions, thus improving muscle flexibility and range of motion.
4. Offers mental relaxation and strength
Massage therapy has a stimulating and sedative effect on the nervous system. Thus, creating a more mentally focussed athlete. Massage therapy helps to improve coordination between your mental and physical attributes, as it gives relaxation to your muscles by reducing pain caused by surgery, injury or chronic problems. Massage therapy manipulates the body muscles and soft tissues to relieve pain and decrease stress. It helps lower blood pressure and heart rate, thus reducing the strain on your heart and maintain a healthier blood circulatory system.
An athlete should have a high degree of flexibility to perform well irrespective of the sport to which they are associated. Sports massage therapy is designed to increase an athlete’s strength, stamina, agility, speed, endurance, and flexibility. You should approach a massage therapist who can help you with any injuries and improve your flexibility and muscle strength so that you can perform better and excel in your sport.