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Massage To Beat Stress


Massage - Basic Strokes:

Massaging is not only an important way of communicating via the sense of touch, but can also help with well-being and relaxation. The human body stores stress, in the neck, back, head and shoulders, and a good massage will help to relieve any tensions in these areas as well as result in an emotional stress release. One of the first rules of massage is to make movements that go with the flow of the body, towards the heart. If you massage the stomach area, this should be done clockwise using a circular motion. You can add aromatherapy oils to your basic massage oil if you prefer; but a good basic oil to use is sweet almond oil. Try to maintain hand to body contact at all times and keep the strokes fluid. Greater pressure can be applied to areas such as shoulders, back and buttocks, but go gently over bony areas and the stomach. To prepare for massage, ensure that you have soft towels available to lie on, that your room temperature is ambient, draft-free, and the environment quiet and relaxed. Massage is not just a treat or a whimsy - it really does help you to feel better. Even the most basic massage, done without any training or instruction, helps to stimulate the circulation and dilate the blood vessels. You can see this happening when the area that you massage reddens. The improved blood flow helps to re-oxygenate the tissues, bringing nutrients to the site and taking away toxins. It also boosts the lymphatic system and can reduce fluid retention. The heat produced by the massage and the extra blood flow helps to relax muscular tension.

Regular deep tissue massage can be extremely helpful if you are under stress, particularly if you combine it with the therapeutic properties of sedative aromatherapy oils, which are readily absorbed into the skin during massage. If you visit a therapist for your massage, it should comprise some if not all of the movements listed below.
1. Effleurage: This is a slow, rhythmic stroking and is used to begin and end each massage session. It helps to increase the body's circulation and absorption of the skin softening oils. It is particularly effective at releasing stress and tension.
2. Kneading: Kneading is an excellent stroke for the fatty areas of the body, such as the thighs and buttocks. It is a very effective way of releasing toxins from these parts of the body. It should never cause any pain, so go slowly and carefully to relieve any knots.
3. Petrissage: This is another kneading technique, but it is used on less fatty parts of the body where muscle is knotted or tense and the bone is close to the surface.
4. Percussion: This is a stimulating massage technique that should be performed quickly. It can be used all over the body, but is particularly good for fatty areas such as the hips and thighs.
5. Friction: This is a fast, but not necessarily hard rubbing movement that helps to increase circulation, so is great for any areas that are cold, such as the hands and feet. This technique is very easy to try on yourself.

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