What are the benefits of Deep Tissue massage?

What shall I write about now that the garden is “resting” for the winter season?

 NOW – for the lowdown on Deep Tissue Bodywork!

While nothing beats the stress-relief of a nice, soothing, Swedish massage, if you have knotted muscles, aches and pains, injuries (past or present), or chronic repetitive motion activities, then a Deep Tissue massage may be better suited for you!

  • Forty-three percent of adult Americans who had a massage between 2012 and July 2013 received it for medical or health reasons such as pain management, soreness/stiffness/spasms, injury rehabilitation, or overall wellness, a number that did not change from 2012.
  • Eighty-eight percent agree that massage can be effective in reducing pain
  • (this information from July 2013 and 2012 AMTA Consumer Surveys)
  • Can be shown to lower blood pressure after a 40-60 minute session
  • Reduction of stress hormones, and release of happy hormones.

In a deep tissue massage, your massage therapist will begin the session by doing a thorough verbal and visual intake to determine the best treatment for you.  The therapist will notice postural patterns, ask about your daily activities, past injuries, and more.

The session will begin with warming strokes, similar to a Swedish massage.  I occasionally have clients who indicate within the first brief seconds of their massage, “you can go as HARD as you WANT!”  And I simply explain that we must first warm the muscular tissue, for the following reasons:

  • Think of it like a workout – you can really injure yourself by lifting very heavy weights without being properly warmed up.  Similarly, if your muscles are cold and not pliable, if I use extreme amounts of pressure it can injure your tissue.
  • Warming the tissue makes it more workable, imagine trying to knead a nice dough versus kneading a hard bag of rock.  In order for me to “get in there”, I must first get through the superficial layers.

Then, in order to focus on the adhesions, restrictions, and pain that you may be experiencing, the more focused and detail-oriented massage techniques can begin. The therapist will use friction, pressure points, stretches, and more.  Fingers, fists, forearms all have techniques that may be applied in your session.

Most concerns about Deep Tissue massage are related to “Will it hurt?”  There is at times, what we call “therapeutic pain”.  This is a pain level that is up to a level 7 on a scale of 1-10, and the point of that pain is not for pain’s sake, but to accomplish the goal of relieving or alleviating pain or restriction.  There can be some pain within the session and sometimes the next day, but the goal and the hoped-for result is a reduction in the presenting pain.  Remember, too, that it is your session and you have the power to ask the therapist to back off and reduce the amount of pressure they are using.

In closing, please call us to book your Deep Tissue Massage!  It is my favorite style of massage, and I feel truly fulfilled when I am able to help my clients not only feel better, but function better.  Seeing someone who has a chronic pain issue, and then alleviating that pain, brings satisfaction, not only to me, but of course, to the client!