07 Aug Why You Should Consider a Deep Tissue Massage
Deep tissue massage is a type of massage therapy that applies slow strokes with firm pressure to reach the deeper layers of tissue (muscles and the connective tissue surrounding muscles). Deep tissue massage is advised if you’re experiencing chronic pain and aches like stiff neck, shoulder tension, lower back pain, muscles tightness or soreness. Deep tissue massages techniques are used to break down scar tissue and break apart muscle adhesions (more commonly referred to as knots), unlike Swedish massages, although some of the strokes can feel the same. Scar tissue and knots can disrupt blood flow and be painful, they can also limit your flexibility and cause inflammation.
What to Expect During a Deep Tissue Massage
Deep tissue massages start with light pressure to help warm up the muscles and tissue. Once your muscles are prepped, specific techniques are applied like stripping and friction. Your therapist might use their fingers and thumbs, knuckles, hands, elbows and/or forearms along or across the grain of your muscles to help iron out tissue fibers and to release knots. As your therapist works on areas where there are knots or scar tissue, you might feel pain or discomfort. Breathing keeping through these tense areas can be helpful. Be sure to communicate with your therapist so adjustments can be made, if necessary. It is common and normal, after a deep tissue massage, to feel sore or stiff. This will go away in a day or two. If you experience continued pain, be sure to talk to your massage therapist. Make sure you drink plenty of water post massage to help flush metabolic waste and other toxins from your body’s tissues.
Benefits of Deep Tissue Massage
Benefits of deep tissue massage can include:
- Reduced Chronic Pain
- Lowered High Blood Pressure
- Back, Neck, and Shoulder Pain Relief
- Stress Reliever
- Muscle Rehab
- Increase Joint Mobility and Range of Motion
- Break Down of Scar Tissue
- Helps Arthritis Pain/Symptoms
When to Get a Deep Tissue Massage
Deep tissue massages are suggested when you’re recovering from an injury (after the acute phase), training athletes, people experiencing muscle strains or chronic pain. Some areas on your body may require a deep tissue massage while other areas do not. Like your shoulders, neck and upper back may need a deeper massage, while your legs and arms do not require it.
Take Proper Precautions
If you are pregnant, have blood clots, have osteoporosis, have recently had surgery, chemo, or radiation or have another medical condition, it is important to talk to your doctor before starting massage therapy of any kind.
Massage therapy, no matter the type (trigger point, Swedish, deep tissue massage, etc.), is one of the best things you can do for your body. It has many benefits outside of muscle relief, like improved sleep, lowered stress, improved circulation, and makes you happier. If you are unsure what kind of massage therapy you’d like to receive, reach out to our office today to discuss which type of massage will best suit you.