The Benefits of Swedish Massage Therapy

By: Scott Meyers

While some people think of fancy salons and spas when they hear the name Swedish Massage Therapy, it is simply a method of massage that is readily available even in the office of a chiropractor. There are many benefits associated with a Swedish massage, and we will explore some of them here.

The Swedish massage is one of the most common forms of massage in the USA and is quite the standard. It is also known as a therapeutic type massage and is an overall method that helps the whole body.

So what is a Swedish massage exactly? Simply - a set and variety of techniques or methods that help to achieve relaxation of the muscles and to help achieve a better and increased rate of circulation.

The main use or purpose of a Swedish massage is:

- Helps to release toxins from the body's muscles
- Help to increase oxygen flow

How is this massage method applied? Basically the Swedish massage utilizes techniques that apply stokes with pressure expressly applied in the direction as the blood would flow as it returns to a person's heart. The pressure is applied to bones and muscles with various types of techniques. These techniques are:

- Shaking motions
- Tapping
- Friction
- Effleurage
- Vibration
- Kneading
- Long strokes

Each of these methods or techniques of the massage has a stroke that can offer benefits in different ways. And these can be further defined as 5 main strokes such as:

- Gliding which is called Effleurage
- Rubbing which is called Friction
- Kneading which is called Petrissage
- Pounding which is called Tapotement
- Shaking which is called Vibration

First the therapist would attempt to concentrate on relaxation which would utilize gliding the palms, fingertips, or thumbs. This would be the Effleurage stroke. Further they would use kneading with the fingers, thumbs, or hands and this would be the Petrissage stroke. Along with this, the therapist would use lotions and or oils to help the technique. The process usually involves a body massage covering the whole body that ranges from between 1 hour to 1.5 hours.

With the Effleurage stroke, the ultimate goal is to find the muscles that are tense and this provides an individual time to get comfortable as they lie face down and are massaged from the neck all the way down the back to the end of the spinal column.

While with the Petrissage stroke, the therapist is striving for the achievement of a deeper relaxation and works to Warm-Up the person body for more intense massage. This technique will involve the muscles being moved or lifted away and upward from the bones. This will help to figure out how much or how deep the pressure applied will need to be. This will possibly lead to other massage strokes that will allow for various benefits. The many and various benefits of utilizing Swedish therapy are:

- Lowers blood pressure
- Increases circulation
- The mind and the body will relax
- Helps with digestion
- Can help to relieve colic
- Helps clear up congested lungs by breaking up mucus
- Helps to stimulate a slower breathing pattern
- Improves muscle flexibility
- Helps to improve the strength of the muscles
- Helps to ease tension and stiffness within the muscles

There are many more benefits to this form of massage with relaxation being a major player in this therapy. Furthermore a person can achieve better overall well being and health if they start receiving a Swedish massage program.

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Scott Meyers is a staff writer for Its Entirely Natural, a resource for helping you achieve a naturally healthy body, mind, and spirit. You may contact our writers through the web site. Follow this link for more information on Massage Therapy.

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