On your next relaxing holiday or romantic getaway the things that you need to ponder shouldnâ€™t get any more complicated than which type of massage you should choose. Lots of day spas or massage therapists have a plethora of different massage styles to choose from, so to save any confusion, we thought it might be handy to give you a quick run down of 6 of our favourite styles of massage;
This is probably the most common type of massage therapy and is the classic â€˜relaxationâ€™ massage offered in most spas. Combining several techniques, such as long smooth strokes, kneading and tapping, the Swedish massage is great for relieving muscle tension, improving circulation and removing toxins. This is the best choice if youâ€™ve never had a massage before or if youâ€™re looking for stress relief and general relaxation.
Deep Tissue Massage
As the name suggests, a Deep Tissue Massage is all about applying pressure to tight or painful muscles. Targetting the deeper layer of muscles and the connective tissue, the masseuse will use deep slow strokes, kneading and trigger point release during your session. This style of massage can sometimes leave you a little tender, but is great if you suffer from tension or have trouble spots like the neck or shoulder.
Hot Stone Massage
With Hot Stone Massage therapy, warm, smooth stones are placed on certain parts of the body in order to loosen tight muscles and balance the energy centres of the body. The masseuse may also use the stones to massage your body, incorporating other massage styles into your treatment. Choose a Hot Stone Massage if you like a more gentle massage that will melt away your tension, leaving you soothed, relaxed and rejuvenated.
Shiatsu means â€˜finger pressureâ€™ and is a form of Japanese massage that focusses on the bodyâ€™s energy centres, or meridians. The masseuse may use fingers, palms, elbows and knees to apply pressure to specific acupuncture points, with the aim of balancing the flow of energy in the body. Shiatsu is great to increase circulation and lymphatic flow, and is also believed to provide the body with greater resistance to disease.Â
Reflexology revolves around the theory that certain parts of the foot, hands and ears are linked through the nervous system to other parts of the body, including the internal organs. By stimulating these areas the therapist aims to create changes in the body such as reducing pain, easing addictions, relieving stress and tension, and assisting with a number of other ailments. Even if youâ€™re not convinced about the additional benefits, at the very least youâ€™ll get an awesome foot massage.
An Aromatherapy Massage combines regular massage therapy (usually Swedish) with Aromatherapy, which is the use of essential oils to address specific needs. The oils are diffused into the air or massaged into your skin and each oil is believed to treat different conditions. You can choose oils that assist with reducing pain and inflammation, aid in relaxation, energy, balance, stress relief etc. This type of massage is particularly good for emotional & stress related conditions.
There are many other forms of massage available for you to choose from when youâ€™re next looking to relax and unwind. Hopefully this brief overview will help when you’re standing in front of a dizzying array of options at the day spa duringÂ your next relaxation retreat or romantic getaway. Enjoy!Â
Image Credit: Tourism Australia & Gaia Retreat & Spa