There are many reasons people receive regular massage. It's not just for relaxation anymore!

Massage is Great for Relaxation and Stress Relief

Probably the number one reason that people receive massage is that it is very relaxing. Massage reduces stress hormones in the body. It is an excellent way to reduce stress. Our lives are fast-paced in the 21st century, and we have a lot of demands on our time. We are plugged in to social media, web sites, news sites 24/7. We have forgotten the old arts of relaxing and taking it easy. 

Our bodies don't thrive under constant stress. Mental acuity rises when we are in a state of relaxation. Massage is one easy way to "unload our wagon" and let go of stress.

Massage Is An Excellent Addition To Your Health Maintenance Program

Massage therapy has several physical benefits that support your health. Some people think of massage as a luxury purchase, but for many, massage is an essential part of healthy living. Massage improves blood flow, helps clear metabolic wastes, improves tissue oxygenation, and strengthens the immune system. Massage helps you move better and it reduces aches and pains. Massage improves sleep and mental acuity.

Orthopedic Massage Supports Healing After Surgery And Injury

Treatment oriented massage is great for supporting your healing after surgery. Myofascial massage techniques are spectacular at helping to remodel scar tissue and release scar tissue from the underlying tissue. This restores regular motion and helps the scar tissue strengthen in the right directions. Proper medical massage applied at the right time and in the right way can aid your healing. 

Orthopedic Massage is a must for injuries and after surgery or cancer treatment. All of these things alter the body and change its physiology. A skilled Orthopedic Massage practitioner knows how to support these changes, and knows how not to re-injure you. 

Massage is Great For Solitude And Reflection

Sometimes you just need a little peace and quiet.

For some, massage is the only hour of the week that is theirs alone. Focusing on the therapist's hands touching your body during a massage induces a dream-like state in which time disappears. In this near-dream state our mind slips into neutral. Often we get up off the massage table with the answer to a difficulty, or a new perspective on a problem. The body and mind work together in this state so that the bodymind can unite and really help us. Massage for me is like a nap, only better! Because you get a little nap AND a massage! It feels great. 

Massage is A Grounding Meditation

When we touch our bodies, our attention goes to that spot. Being constantly drawn back to the touch on our bodies for an hour or more gives us an unbroken experience of connection with our bodies. It's like a meditation that we don't have to work at; the hands on our bodies do the work of moving our awareness back to the center in every moment. 

Massage Can Be A Tool for Personal Growth

Massage helps us get to know our bodies, that strange landscape which belongs to us yet somehow seems like a stranger at times. We discover sensations we were unaware of during massage. We find places that needed attention and that were going unheard. 

A Rolfer friend of mine says that deep tissue massage is the best way to open intuitive faculties. "If you want to open your intuition, get lots of deep bodywork," she says. I agree. During the nine months I was in massage school I received dozens of massages, many of them deep tissue massage. That was the beginning of my intuitive reawakening. 

Eugene Gendlin created something he called "focusing" in the 1970s. This is a technique of contacting the body and inquiring what is there. Focusing is part of my bodywork now, and I find that learning how to notice what's taking place in our bodies, focusing on it, and just being with it is a grand transformational tool.

Try Massage For Yourself

If you've never had a massage, perhaps you'd like to try it for one of the reasons I've listed here. There are many ways that massage can fit into your regular routine of health maintenance and personal time. And there are many, many ways that massage supports a healthy, grounded life.

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Jeffrey Rich, LMT 656, is a practitioner and educator in the healing arts living and working in Huntsville, AL. A Licensed Massage Therapist, he is certified in Orthopedic Massage by OMERI, Certified Systemic and Family Constellations Facilitator. Jeffrey is a Shamanic Practitioner and teacher who studies and practices the Andean Cosmology and Core Shamanism.
Being a true Gemini, he has two websites,
www.shining-mountain.com and www.waterwillowmoon.com
He owns waaay too many books for his own good.