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Swedish Massage

“Swedish Massage” is a term that has come to be understood as massage that is primarily for circulatory enhancement.  (It’s not really Swedish, but that’s another story.)

Circulation is almost always enhanced by any form of legitimate massage.  “Swedish” massage is characterized by flowing movements that do not linger in one area too long.  It works on the muscle as a whole, rather than points within the muscle.  It is a technique that I find valuable when used in conjunction with deep tissue massage (or separately, if preferred).  Swedish is helpful in reintegrating the body holistically after working various parts more deeply.  It helps to relax the client during ongoing deep tissue therapy.  It’s good for clients who can’t tolerate deeper work.  It speeds up the elimination of toxins.

This massage can be lighter or firmer, but is characterized by the application of oil or lotion in gliding motions over the skin, moving from place to place to connect the different areas of the body.   It mechanically aids circulation of all kinds.

Muscles need to be worked in this larger manner, as well as locally.  Circulatory massage is part of effective sports massage therapy.

Also, the enormous number of nerves contained within the skin connect with the brain.  This feedback greatly helps the central nervous system to regulate the other layers of the body and to relax the general system.

As we age, the skin does also.  It may lose efficiency in communicating with the brain.  Diseases such as diabetes further erode the skin’s ability to function properly.  Lymphatic and venous circulation slow down for many reasons, including gravity.  Your joints may not work as efficiently.

Circulatory massage can help restore these vital functions.  It allows relaxation and healing.   There are many studies showing the clinical benefits of this modality.

One of the first things we were taught in massage school is that most traditional cultures use massage or healing touch in some form.  For example, many traditional households in India massage their children as infants to encourage proper growth and development.

Other cultures often use touch of various depths to relieve pain and help healing.  Many Europeans incorporate regular massage into their ongoing fitness routines.  It is not considered a luxury there, but a necessity for better functioning.  I have had a number of foreign clients who understand the value of massage as a practical matter.

We automatically rub sore places because it makes it feel better.  My old massage texts showed photos of nurses giving massage.  It is only in modern, techno-times that we sometimes lose the awareness of the value of human touch in healing.   But people are beginning to realize that value once again, as conventional medical care becomes more expensive, and not always completely effective for our needs.

I have noticed that my ongoing clientele is healthier and happier than average.   Some of my clients have been with me a long time.   It was only after 20-30 years that I looked back and noticed that except for the occasional kidney stone, there has been almost no serious illness unless it was there coming into the massage experience.  It proves that massage indeed is worth the investment!

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