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What is Massage Therapy?

Updated: Mar 25, 2021

National Complementary Therapy Week

22nd - 28th March 2021

It's important to remember that self-care is important too. You may be looking at treating yourself to a massage as soon as it is safe to do so, but do you know what kind of massage will be best for you?

There are different types of massage available, read on to find out which one you should choose.

Massage Therapy is a holistic treatment which aims to relax, revive and heal the body through techniques that apply pressure to parts of the body by stroking, kneading, tapping or pressing.

These massage techniques can range from being soft and gentle to vigorous and brisk., depending on the type of massage. They may sometimes even be a bit uncomfortable. Therapists may treat your whole body or concentrate on a specific part, such as your head, neck or shoulders. Most therapist will be qualified in a number of techniques so may be able to utilise a number of different techniques specifically for you.

There are several types of massage:

· Swedish massage

· aromatherapy massage

· deep tissue massage

· sports massage

· Specialist massage

Swedish massage

Swedish massage is designed to improve circulation, soothe muscles and improve relaxation. It uses five main techniques; stroking, kneading, rubbing, tapping or pounding, and vibration. The treatment can be incredibly relaxing and is used to reduce both emotional, and physical stress. It is what is considered a typical massage.

Aromatherapy massage

Aromatherapy is a slower type of massage that utilises the power of the essential oils. A qualified aromatherapist will be able to create a hand blend of essential oils specially for you and that individual session. The massage uses stroking and gliding techniques to install a sense of relaxation. This type of massage is relaxing with the essential oils continuing to work after the massage.

Deep tissue massage

Deep tissue massage uses slow, firm strokes and pressure to help ease and release tension deep in your muscles. Commonly used to treat chronic aches and pains and tension in the neck, back and shoulders, deep tissue massage is an intense but effective treatment. It may be used in other massages such as sports or a lymphatic massage.

Sports massage

A Sports massage is designed to help prevent and treat injuries that can occur as a result of exercise. The therapist will likely use a range of deep, intense techniques, stretching, compression, toning, and trigger point response techniques similar to acupressure to restore mobility to an injured muscle.

Specialist massage

Specialist massage can take the form of many different types. For example Pre and Post natal massage, Shiatsu, Acupressure, Indian Head, Chinese, Thai, Lava Shell massage would be considered specialist.

There are many forms of massage therapy, with styles of treatments and techniques varying all over the world. What may work for one person, may not work for you, so speak to your therapist and try out different treatments to see what massage suits you. I will also be covering Reflexology and Aromatherapy in this series which may be more appealing.

If you have any questions on massage therapy or any other therapies please do contact me on or via my contact form on

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