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Massage Therapy Styles

There are a number of different massage therapy styles, which means that you should request the one that will provide the most benefit for your needs. If you’re not sure which massage technique you need, then continue reading to learn more about the different styles. Once you know which one you prefer,contact Zense Thai Massage Spa in Dallas to schedule your massage therapy appointment!

Swedish Massage

A Swedish massage is probably the most common form of massage therapy. Part of the reason for this is the comforting, long, and kneading strokes that are used, in addition to light tapping strokes that are designed to target the topmost layer of muscles. As it relieves tension, Swedish massage can leave you feeling both relaxed and energized. There are four common strokes used in Swedish massage:

  1. Effleurage - a smooth gliding stroke

  2. Petrissage - rolling and kneading

  3. Friction - deep circular movements

  4. Tapotement - alternating taps with cupped hands or fingers

Deep Tissue Massage

Deep tissue massage does exactly what its name implies — targets the deeper layers of muscle that can be hard to get to. You can expect your massage therapist to use firm pressure coupled with slow strokes so that they can get to the deep layers of muscle and fascia (connective tissue). Deep tissue massage therapy is ideal for those who suffer from chronic aches and pains, including stiff necks, sore shoulders, and leg tightness.

Many people think that this type of massage therapy is simply a more intense version of Swedish massage, but that is incorrect. A deep tissue massage generally starts out with lighter pressure that allows the muscles to warm up and prepare for deeper pressure. Common strokes that are used with this technique are:

  • Stripping - deep, gliding pressure along muscle fibers

  • Friction - pressure applied across the grain of the muscle fiber

Sports Massage

A sports massage can actually be quite painful at first. It’s important to remember, however, that there is a difference between good pain and bad pain. Make sure that you talk with your massage therapist before your appointment to determine their qualifications and experience with sports massage. Since the focus of this massage therapy is to prevent injuries, improve physical training, and restore balance to the musculoskeletal system, it’s important that your massage therapist knows exactly how to target the muscles without causing injury. A sports massage can help to release any tension in your soft tissue so that you are able to improve your performance and, hopefully, avoid chronic pain issues.

Shiatsu Massage

Shiatsu massage therapy comes from Japan, and tends to be more active than other types of massage. You can expect your massage therapist to use their fingers, elbows, knees, fists, and feet, depending on the type of Shiatsu that you want. There are actually four different styles of Shiatsu — Zen, Five Elements, Ohashiatsu, and Ashiatsu. Whether you are looking for an active massage, a traditional massage, or an energy-balancing massage, you are sure to find exactly what you’re looking for with a Shiatsu massage.

Hot Stone Massage

If you haven’t tried a hot stone massage yet, then you really don’t know what you’re missing! Smooth, heated stones are placed on different points along your back so that the localized heat can begin to warm and relax your muscles. Additionally, your massage therapist might hold the stones in their hand while they massage your muscles in order to aid in achieving a deeper pressure without causing discomfort.

The massage techniques that are typically used during a hot stone massage are the long, kneading, and rolling strokes that come from Swedish massage. This particular massage therapy is very relaxing and perfect for those who easily get chilled or feel cold.

Aromatherapy Massage

An aromatherapy massage is essentially a Swedish massage that uses scented essential oils or lotions. Your massage therapist will have you inhale the scent before they begin your session, so that you can receive the biggest benefit. It’s believed that essential oils can help promote positive changes in your mind and body by affecting the limbic system. Depending on what you need, you could ask for a calming blend, an energizing blend, or a peaceful blend. No matter which scent you choose, you are sure to leave your massage therapy session feeling deeply relaxed!

Trigger Point Massage

Trigger point massage therapy addresses a tight area within your muscle tissue that is causing pain in other parts of your body. For example, you might have a trigger point that is causing pain in your neck. This would be called referral pain. The pain in your neck could trigger more pain to travel to your head, which can lead to a headache. This cause-and-effect relationship means that while you have a headache, the most effective massage will be the one that finds the trigger point and addresses the source. If you’re waiting for your appointment and wondering how to alleviate the pain in the meantime, then you can use your fingers to apply pressure directly to the trigger point. Your muscles should feel looser after each of these short sessions.

No matter what type of massage therapy sounds appealing to you, it’s important to take care of your body on a regular basis. At Zense Thai Massage Spa in Dallas, we are proud to offer a wide variety of massage therapy styles to provide the relief, relaxation, and healing that your body needs. Contact us today to learn more about our services and schedule your massage therapy today!

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