Did you know that different types of massages work on treating different parts of the body and healing different conditions? This is a good alternative treatment to medication and can even be paid for by your health insurance benefits through your employer.
What is massage therapy? During this practice, massage therapists press, rub and manipulate the muscles and other soft tissues of the body. To do this, massage therapists will most commonly use their hands and fingers, but may also use their elbows, arms, and even feet. Different types of massages use different techniques, including different types of massages that help manage stress.
We’ll introduce you to the six best massages for stress that you can try:
1. Shiatsu Massage
Feeling stressed or just want to relax? Then a shiatsu massage may be right for you. This type of massage is also effective at relieving pain and muscle tension. A shiatsu massage is a type of Japanese massage that has many other benefits as well. Some of these benefits include helping to relieve depression and anxiety, as well as headaches.
During this type of massage, you can expect to have your whole body worked. Your massage therapist will use their hands, more specifically their palms and thumbs to massage key points throughout your body. The registered massage therapist will use their discretion to see how much pressure they need to use. If at any point, you feel like it’s too much, all you need to do is let your massage therapist know and they can modify the amount of pressure they use.
2. Swedish Massage
Swedish massage is another best massage for stress. If you are new to the world of massage therapy, going for a Swedish massage is a great way to start. This type of massage is also really effective at helping you relax and combat stress since the goal of a Swedish massage is to fully relax the entire body.
During this massage, your massage therapist will use long, gliding, and smooth strokes in the direction of blood making its way back to the heart. All of this helps to release muscle tension, undo knots, stretch tendons, and even lower blood pressure.
Opting for a Swedish massage is never a bad idea! Especially if you just need a quick way to relax.
3. Hot Stone Massage
Another massage that is quite effective at treating stress is a hot stone massage. This type of massage is also used to treat muscle tension, relieve pain, increase blood flow, and promote relaxation.
Whether you have pain or not, hot stone massages are a great way to relax and help manage your stress. This is particularly true if you sit at a desk for eight hours a day or perform laborious work throughout the day.
During this type of massage, your massage therapist will place heated stones on key areas throughout your body. While a stone is held against your body, your massage therapist will employ techniques from Swedish massage to apply pressure and treat your muscles.
4. Aromatherapy Massage
Aromatherapy massages are an effective way to relieve stress, reduce anxiety and depression, relieve pain, and muscle tension.
Since essential oils on their own are also a great way to reduce stress, combining it with a massage provides even more of a stress-busting experience.
During this type of massage, your massage therapist will either choose which essential oils to use or ask you what your preference is. Next, your massage therapist will give you a full body massage while using essential oils. You will be able to breathe in their calming scent as you relax during the massage.
5. Acupressure Massage
During an acupressure massage (also called auricular massage), your massage therapist will treat your ears, focusing on their unique pressure points. Since these points correspond to areas in the central nervous system, it encourages the release of endorphins. Endorphins are the body’s natural stress relievers, so you can see why this type of massage is so effective at treating stress.
This type of massage is also used to treat muscle tension and pain.
6. Sports Massage
If you are an athlete who is looking to relieve stress through massage, then a sports massage is what you need. Since most sports require you to use the same muscle or muscle group repetitively, massage can help with the stress and pain that accompanies this.
During this massage, you’ll receive either a full body massage or you can have your massage therapist focus on the areas that need it most. You can expect your massage therapist to use a variety of massage techniques such as soothing strokes and deep pressure.
Once you get started in massage therapy, you may find that one particular type of massage works best for relieving your stress. The good news is that you have many different options to try until you find one that works best for you.