Massage Therapy Styles & Associated Health Benefits


Massage Therapy has been practiced just like other health practices for hundreds of years to living healthy. If you look the prospective or place of massage in today’s life, then it’s mostly recommended for people having different medical related ailments. 

There are more than 80 types of massages that work using a wide variety of movements, techniques and pressure. These generally involve the pressing, manipulating and stretching of muscles. Most of the time massage is given using other soft tissues like hands, fingers, elbows, feet or forearms.

As per American Massage Therapy Association, 19% of Americans had one or more types of massage. Not only that, they have their own specific reasons of doing so.

The positive effects of massage have been such that more and more people are coming forward to have it. For example, baby boomers recognize the health benefits of massage. All they do is to choose from an array of massage types and get rid of their poor health conditions.

In the below given text, you can very well choose and decide which type of massage will suit best for you.


Which Massage Therapy Styles Are Best?

Massage is a broad term which is given to hundreds of people depending upon certain conditions. As we have already described above that massage can be given in different ways and styles, it all depends on person to person which type of massage would suit him best.

Today, different styles are adopted for giving massage therapy. It can be ranged from smooth strokes to short or percussive strokes. In the same ways, there are some massage therapists who like to use oil and other lotions but others don’t. A massage can last anywhere between 5 minutes to 2 hours.

In order to have a massage, you netter need to ask a question to yourself. Like, if you really need a massage for stress control or relaxation. You can also have a massage to get some relief in your symptoms or to get the required help in getting rid of certain medical conditions.

The idea is that you need to first tell your therapists what you are actually looking for before having a massage. In doing massage, many use more than one style. It can also happen like a therapist to customize your massage, depending upon your age, condition or any other specific needs.

Take a look at some of the below given therapy styles. The first 4 are quite popular ones.


Swedish Massage

Swedish massage therapy happens to be the most common types of all massage forms. It generally involves soft, long, kneading strokes along with light, rhythmic, tapping strokes on topmost layers of muscles.

It also gets combined with the movements of the joints. This is the reason why the Swedish massage therapy can be both energizing and relaxing. It may also be used after an injury. Take a look at the 4 common types of Swedish massage:

Tapotement: A short, alternating tap done with cupped hands, fingers, or the edge of the hand

Friction: It has deep and circular movements that cause layers of tissues to rub against each other that finally helps to increase the blood flow and also breaks down the scar tissue.

Petrissage: This type of massage involves squeezing, rolling, or kneading that follows effleurage

Effleurage: Here, a smooth gliding stroke is used to relax soft tissue


Deep Tissue Massage

This kind of massage suits best for giving attention to certain painful stiff “trouble spots” in your body. It generally uses many deliberate strokes that specifically focuses on pressure on layers of muscles, tendons or other specific tissues under the skin.

Please note that Deep Tissue Massage can be less rhythmic as compared to other types of massage. This kind od massage relieves the pattern of tension and help with a kind of muscle injury like back sprain.

Sports Massage

This kind of massage is developed with various muscle systems and used for a particular sports activity. For example, it makes use of a variety of techniques to help athletes in training before, during or after any sports event. You may use sports massage to get rid of any sports related injury.


Chair Massage

Chair massage is famous for those people who often visit conference, music festival or a country fair. Chair massage is done when you are seated fully clothed in a portable and specially designed chair. The therapists generally use the technique of your neck, hands, arms, back and shoulders.

Shiatsu Massage

shiatsu in Japanese means finger pressure. In this kind of massage, a therapist uses a varied and rhythmic pressure on certain points of the body, also known as acupressure points.

These specific points are believed to be crucial for the flow of body’s vital energy, called chi.


Forms of Massage Therapy


Thai Massage

In Thai massage, a therapist uses his skills to move a client’s body into different positions. This massage includes acupressure, mobilization of joints and compression of muscles.


Lymphatic Drainage Massage

A lymphatic drainage massage is a type of gentle massage which is designed to help increase the overall circulation of lymph fluid in your tissues. Lymph is basically a protein rich fluid that circulates in the body through lymph vessels.

The lymph generally scoops up foreign particles like bacteria, virus and other body wastes and carries them to lymph nodes. The lymph finally gets filtered into the lymph nodes to get rid of impurities from your body.

So, this kind of massage usually happens with gentle pressure along with long strokes towards skin. It helps to increase the movement of lymph through your system.


Hot Stone Massage

Here, therapist places warmed stones on certain body areas like acupressure points. These stones may be used as massage tools or can be left temporarily in place. This massage type can also be used along with other massage techniques. Please note that hot stone massage can be quite relaxing and smoothing as they transmit heat deep into the body.


Pregnancy Massage Therapy

Pregnancy is a crucial stage where body goes through so many major changes. In order to release stress, joint pain, decreasing arm and leg swelling and reducing stress, this type of massage is given to pregnant ladies.

Please note that massage can be specifically helpful to patients when medication and other medical options may be more limited. Here, a massage therapist makes use of a soft pillow and get you in a comfortable position before giving you the massage.


What Are the Health Benefits of Massage Therapy?

There are many types of massage that offer health benefits beyond simple relaxation. Given below are a plethora of health benefits that you can gain from having the right massage for you.

Back pain: Massage therapy helps to get rid of back pain.

Headache: It’s another type of pain and recommends a massage therapy. A number of studies conducted in this regard suggest that massage therapy reduce the number of migraines of a person. It also improves the sleep as well.

Osteoarthritis: The use of massage therapy is recommended in knee Osteoarthritis. Those who have received one hour massage session or two times a week on their knees have reported improvement in pain, stiffness and functions of the overall movement of joints.

Cancer: A massage is mainly used as a complement to both western and traditional medicine. It has the power to relax the body and also to reduce other Cancer symptoms. Some of the symptoms include depression, nausea and fatigue. It also improves the immune system of your body.

Depression: After a review on 20 clinical trials, it has been found that a massage therapy has all the power to decrease depression. But if you have a generalized anxiety disorder, then it has been found to provide a calm environment to patients.

Also Read: Lymphatic Drainage Massage; Lymphatic Massage & Its Benefits