Every situation, every person's body, every muscle group within the body is different. Sometimes one technique works well on one person or one area of the body, but does not produce a favorable response on another person or muscle group. Utilizing a variety of techniques can offer optimal relief for any given situation. Below is a list of modalities available during any massage session.
Swedish massage is a series of movements and techniques designed to relax and restore the entire body. Typically, this is a full body massage involving effleurage (long strokes), petrissage (kneading), and subtle joint movements, with minimal time spent isolating and treating specific issues (trigger points, tight bands, etc.) unless necessary. Swedish massage techniques are also used as a basis for other techniques, allowing the therapist to release superficial tension before moving into deeper work.
Neuromuscular Therapy (NMT) involves a variety of techniques used to restore balance between the nervous system and the musculoskeletal system. By isolating specific muscles and their attachments, NMT aims to reprogram the patterns of the nervous system, thereby relieving pain and dysfunction while enhancing the movement of joints and muscles.
Trigger Points (TrP) are hyperirritable locations in the soft tissue that refer pain to a different location. They can be found in the muscle belly, the tendon, or the fascia surrounding the muscle. Trigger Point Therapy involves using specific techniques and modalities to isolate and release these trigger points.
Pregnancy massage is a modification of various techniques designed to accommodate and care for the many changes taking place in the body during pregnancy. It is typically performed in a side lying position and utilizes various modalities to aid in relaxation, stretching, and the reduction of pain in a safe, comfortable manner. Many expectant mothers experience a decrease in back pain, hip pain, sacral pain and find methods or positions for relieving aches and pains at home.
Sports Massage involves techniques designed to flush and drain muscles, prevent injury, prepare for competition, decrease recovery time, and keep the muscles toned and elongated so they are ready for optimal performance. A Sports Massage session can involve the entire body, or can focus specifically on muscles or issues related to an activity: plantar fasciitis, hamstrings, TFL or IT Band, hip flexors, overall toning, etc.
Chair Massage is a great way to provide massage to a large group of people with a limited time frame. While fully clothed and seated comfortably in a specially designed massage chair, clients can receive the benefits of massage using a combination of many techniques. Each chair massage can last anywhere from 10-30 minutes and is very effective in reducing stress or tension, and provides a great framework for therapeutic treatment on specific issues. Many companies are bringing chair massage into the office, where it can increase morale, decrease anxiety, increase work performance, increase alertness, and decrease job related injuries. Chair massage also makes a great gift for wedding showers, birthday parties, open houses, etc.
Fascia is the soft tissue component of the connective tissue system that permeates the human body. Fascia is an uninterrupted, three-dimensional web of tissue that extends from head to toe, from front to back, from interior to exterior, surrounding muscles, bones, organs, nerves, blood vessels and other structures. Myofascial Release uses specific warming, stretching, and unraveling techniques to focus on allowing the adhesions in the fascial layer to release, so the muscles underneath can relax and return to their normal resting length.
Muscle Release Technique (MRT) is a unique injury therapy that combines compression, extension, movement and breath to give relief from pain. The primary principal of MRT is non-specific pressure applied while putting the muscle through a rhythmic stretch. MRT is very effective for repetitive use injuries and tight muscles that do not respond to typical stretching methods.
Strain/Counterstrain is a subtle, non-invasive technique that uses the body's natural relaxation mechanisms to illicit a relaxation response in the muscle belly. This technique is very effective for issues that do respond well to direct compression, people who do not like deep pressure, or issues that are extremely tender to the touch.
Neuro Tap & Stroke is a gentle, non-invasive technique designed to reintegrate the central nervous system and the sensory nerve transmissions in the peripheral nervous system. This technique is very calming, and is effective for clients with conditions where the nervous system is over stimulated – Cerebral Palsy, MS, some fibromyalgia clients, etc.
Deep Tissue Therapy is a combination of various techniques performed on the muscles at a deeper level. While many people enjoy deep pressure, please keep in mind that the body's response to pain is to tense back up again. Going too deep can defeat the purpose of the massage if it results in the body contracting to protect itself. Therapeutic massage can be modified to find the optimal level of pressure for releasing your specific issues without being too “fluffy” or creating bruises.