In our last post, we looked at some common forms of massage therapy including Swedish massage, hot stone massage, deep connective tissue, neuromuscular therapy, sports massage, and reflexology. In this post, we’ll summarize some lesser known massage techniques. The following techniques may be lesser known, but they may be a perfect fit for you:
Massage Techniques – Specialties
This form of massage therapy aims to relax contractions in the body with gentle, sustained pressure into the myofascial connective tissue. It is used for:
- Increasing flexibility – as myofascial tissues soften and elgonate, range of motion is increased.
- Improving posture – by elongating contracted fascial lines, the body moves into a more natural, healthy posture.
- Working deep without a lot of pressure – myofascial release relies on sustained gentle pressure to achieve results. Individuals who prefer a lighter touch but still want to work on trigger points and deeply embedded patterns of tension should try this technique.
Active Release Technique (ART)
This form of massage therapy aims to treat overused muscles. It is a technique that engages the client to perform specific movements as the therapist works along fascial and muscular lines in the body. It can be used for:
- Treating conditions associated with overused muscles – headaches, carpal tunnel syndrome, shoulder pain, shin splints, back pain, plantar fasciitis, sciatica, tennis elbow, and knee problems are some examples of conditions that ART is intended to treat.
- Increasing range of motion – like myofascial release, this technique works to elongate fascial lines in the body and redistribute scar tissues to restore normal range of motion.
- Target specific conditions – ART uses condition specific treatment protocol consisting of over 500 specific moves.
Craniosacral Therapy (CST)
This form of bodywork addresses the synarthrodial joints of the cranium with specific therapeutic touch The cranial-sacral therapist may also gently work the spine and pelvis. All of this is done to encourage a healthy flow of cerebrospinal fluid. Also called cranial osteopathy and cranial therapy, it is intended for:
- Relieve tension and stress – patients often report feelings of deep relaxation following a CST session
- Working light but deep – through the use of gentle and expertly applied palpations to the skull, spine, and pelvis, the therapist addresses deeply seated patterns of tension.
- A whole-body, holistic approach – CST acknowledges the inter-connections of mind, body, and spirit. As such, the CST therapist intends to treat the client on all levels when she/he works.
Thai Foot Massage
This therapy focuses on the feet and lower legs. The therapist uses both hands and a Thai foot massage stick to stretch and stimulate reflex points on the feet. Ideal for:
- Invigorating and relaxing the whole body – There are reflex points on the feet to the map out the entire body. By stimulating those point with acupressure, the entire body is stimulated
- A different approach – Instead of muscles and fascial lines, reflexology is focused on the meridian lines of the body. As such, it is a perfect compliment to other massage therapies or as an alternative to other massage therapies.
At Advanced Massage Professionals in Gainesville, we have at least one professional who specializes in each of the above techniques. See our Services and Techniques pages for more information on all of the massage techniques we provide.