What are the Common Massage Therapy Techniques?

Common Massage Therapy Techniques

 

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A quality massage therapist will have an array of massage tools and techniques to assist you. These massage techniques can include the following:

Longitudinal Gliding

Longitudinal gliding is a basic but effective massage technique administered in the direction of the blood flow. It aids the fluid dispersion from the injury site, and thus helps reduce inflammation and swelling. It is also very useful in relaxing tight muscles.

Kneading

Kneading can be performed in different ways and is described by the part of a hand used to accomplish the massage, eg thumb kneading and palm kneading. The pressure used must vary according to the purpose of the massage and the bulk of the tissues under treatment. The rhythm and rate of the movement are equally important as the pressure is applied intermittently.

Myofascial Releases

Myofascial release is manual technique for stretching the fascia with the aim to balance the body. Fascia is located between the skin and the underlying structure of muscle and bone, it is a seamless web of connective tissue that covers and connects the muscles, organs, and skeletal structures in our body. Injuries, stress, trauma, and poor posture can cause restriction to fascia, and the goal of myofascial release is to release fascia restriction and restore its tissue.

Trigger Point Therapy

Trigger point therapy is a bodywork technique that involves the applying of pressure to tender muscle tissue in order to relieve pain and dysfunction in other parts of the body. Trigger points are active centres of muscular hyperactivity, which often cross-over with acupuncture points. You will also find that your muscular "knots" are commonly trigger points.

Deep Transverse Frictions

Transverse friction is a transverse connective tissue therapy applied directly by the fingers. Transverse frictions use an oscillating pressure applied across the direction of the tissue fibres. This technique is used mainly on tendon or ligament injuries to help break down thickened, pain-producing scar tissue. If these lesions are not reduced then they are likely to cause further irritation, and degenerate more quickly than they should.

Compression Massage

Rhythmic compression into muscles used to create a deep hyperaemia and softening effect in the tissues. It is generally used as a warm-up for deeper, more specific massage work. Sports massage utilises compression massage.

Cross-Fibre Massage

Cross-fibre friction techniques applied in a general manner to create a stretching and broadening effect in large muscle groups; or on site-specific muscle and connective tissue, deep transverse friction applied to reduce adhesions and to help create strong, flexible repair during the healing process.

Swedish Massage

Swedish massage techniques includes long strokes, kneading, friction, tapping, percussion, vibration, effleurage, and shaking motions.

The usual sequence of techniques is: 

Effleurage: Gliding strokes with the palms, thumbs and/or fingertips
Petrissage: Kneading movements with the hands, thumbs and/or fingers  
Friction: Circular pressures with the palms of hands, thumbs and/or fingers
Vibration: Oscillatory movements that shake or vibrate the body
Percussion: Brisk hacking or tapping
Passive and active movements: Bending and stretching

PNF Stretches (proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation)

PNF techniques combine passive stretching and isometrics with your muscle alternatingly stretched passively and contracted. The technique targets nerve receptors in the muscles to extend the muscle length.

First, the relaxed muscle is stretched by a partner, ones own body weight against the floor, a wall, or similar resistance.

At the point, where no further stretching seems possible, the stretch is held for up to 30 seconds. However, during this period, the muscle should be contracted as much as possible.

Finally, when the muscle gets relaxed again, it should be immediately stretched farther, which is then easily possible again.

This technique of alternating stretching and contracting can be repeated several times, in order to stretch a bit further each time.

Your PhysioWorks massage therapist is a professional who understands was is right for your body. If you have any questions as to what is best for your body, please call us to discuss your massage requirements.

 

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    Last updated 20-Aug-2016 05:32 PM

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