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Therapeutic Massage is the practice of applying manual or mechanical pressure, tension, motion, or vibration to the soft tissues of the body, including muscles, tendons and ligaments, to achieve a beneficial response. Massage Therapy is performed by a professional Massage Therapist or Physical Therapist.

Massage can be applied to parts of the body or successively to the whole body, to aid the process of injury healing, relieve stress, manage pain, and improve circulation.

Overview

What is massage?

Massage is a “hands-on” therapy in which muscles and other soft tissues of the body are manipulated to improve health and well-being. Varieties of massage range from gentle stroking and kneading of muscles and other soft tissues to deeper manual techniques. Massage has been practiced as a healing therapy for centuries in nearly every culture around the world. It helps relieve muscle tension, reduce stress, and evoke feelings of calmness. Although massage affects the body as a whole, it particularly influences the activity of the musculoskeletal, circulatory, lymphatic, and nervous systems.

Are there many types of massage?

There are nearly 100 different massage and body work techniques. Each technique is uniquely designed to achieve a specific goal. The most common types practiced in the United States include:

Should anyone avoid massage?

Massage should be avoided by people with congestive heart failure, kidney failure, phlebitis or cellulitis, blood clots, bleeding disorders, and contagious skin conditions. If you have cancer, you must check with your doctor before considering massage. Also, be sure to let your massage or physical therapist know of any medications you are taking.