Deep Tissue Massage
The Deep tissue techniques are used to reach the deepest portions of muscles, at times reaching three layers below the skin, using deep gliding compression along the grain of the muscle. Muscle fibers are freed and the cells are rehydrated with fresh fluids. Blood circulation to the area is increased and tissues are repaired. This type of bodywork is most effective in re-aligning the muscular frame and freeing the body from deeply held stress patterns.
Muscle strains, sprains and tears can be addressed by a certified sports massage therapist, depending on the grade of seriousness. Most sports injuries can be divided into a first, second or third degree injury. First degree injuries may be addressed immediately while second degree injuries may need to wait for the inflammation response to subside. Third degree injuries should be addressed by an orthopedist or other trained physician.
Sports massage has been scientifically proven to speed the recovery of damaged or fatigued muscles. Modalities such as; trigger point therapy, deep cross friction, myofascial release, stretching and PNF stretching, autogenic inhabitation and counter strain and compression can all be used to improve muscle health and function.
The Swedish method is most effective in relieving emotional stress and anxiety built up in the body, due to any number of crisis that may arise in day to day life. Stress due to a divorce, loss of a loved one or any number of difficulties causes the body to produce a stress hormone called Cortisol. Cortisol will suppress the immune system and when the immune system is depleted the body is open to any number of illnesses or diseases. Massage is scientifically proven to reduce levels of this stress hormone and in addition it increases a number a number of “good neuro-chemicals” that give our bodies a feeling of health well being. Some of these chemicals include: Seratonin, oxytocin, endorphin and dopamine.
Trigger Point Therapy
Trigger points are small hyper-irritable nodules, or small knots found in muscles and tendons. The presents of trigger points may cause muscle pain and dysfunction. Sometimes the pain refers to a distant part from the point. Points are released by compressing them for up to 60 seconds. We also use the “spray and stretch” method pioneered by Janet Travell. Trigger points are often missed in medical diagnosis as it takes a “trained touch” to reach into the tissue and locate them. Trigger points are also often missed by an MRI. If you are suffering from musculoskeletal pain and no one has been able to diagnose the problem, you may be suffering from myo-fascial trigger points.
Myofascial Release Techniques
Fascia is connective tissue that runs through the entire body. It is like the glue that holds all the tissues together under the skin. Fascia and muscle tissue, when they are healthy and working properly, slide across each other freely and allow us to move through space smoothly and with ease. Problems can arise in connective tissues, either through injuries, scar tissue, post surgery adhesions, dehydration, and more that cause the fascia to become bound and immobile. The result is often pain, tightness, limited range of motion, adhesions and general discomfort. A medical massage therapist can find the restrictions and release them using a number of techniques. Skin rolling, deep cross friction and dry warm friction are a few of the methods involved.