One of the most common types of massages is the Swedish massage. Most first time massage recipients will receive a Swedish massage. Developed in the 1700′s by a Swedish doctor named Per Henrik Ling, the Swedish massage uses gentle but firm pressure to induce relaxation and alleviate muscle tension. The massage therapist will use massage oils to gently massage the body. Techniques involve the use of the hands, forearms, or elbows to work the surface layers of the muscles. Active and passive techniques are applied to the muscles and joints to improve physical and mental health.
A massage therapist can use such massage techniques as: smooth gliding strokes known as Effleurage, kneading which is known as Petrissage, Vibration or Shaking which are oscillatory movements that vibrate the body, and Frictions which are circular pressures applied with the palms of hands, thumbs and/or fingers. Sometimes the massage therapist will use gentle tapping percussive movements known as Tapotement.
Depending on your personal preference, a Swedish massage can be light, firm, or deeper in specific areas to alleviate deeper muscle tension. When you are getting a Swedish massage, you will usually be nude with a towel or sheet covering your body which allows the massage therapist to uncover only the body part that will be massaged. However, many people will choose to wear underwear.
There are a number of benefits to getting a Swedish massage. For instance, it helps shorten recovery time from an injury, increases the oxygen flow in the blood by dilating the blood vessels, and it releases toxins from the muscles. As well, it boosts circulation, stretches ligaments and tendons making them limber, relaxes muscle spasms, improves skin tone, decreases muscle soreness and stiffness, soothes nerves, restores muscle tone, reduces stress while promoting mental and physical relaxation, increases joint flexibility, improves tone and texture of the skin, and improves range of motion.
The person receiving a Swedish massage will feel relaxed and peaceful. It is a very rejuvenating type of massage that promotes overall good health and well being.