By Thalia Morris of Around Town Massage
I’ve often told my clients that if I’d known about massage when I was in banking, I could have kept a therapist employed full time. I was in my late 30’s before I had my first massage. My banking job was extremely stressful and I was on the go all…the…time. I rarely made time for myself, instead I was there for everyone else. Sound familiar?
In the middle of one particularly intense project, I just had to get out of town. So I did. I created a weekend retreat in Sonoma Valley and booked a mud bath treatment that included a 90-minute massage. Yes, I was this stressed. At the end of the day I felt like a limp noodle. I’d never experienced this before.
Several years later while changing careers, I took a three-hour scalp, face and neck massage workshop, and I was hooked. I signed up for my first massage course that lead to more training and a new career path.
This was 30 years ago when massage was in its infancy in terms of current popularity. I feel it’s become a “thing” to do sometimes without knowing how all your body systems benefit from massage.
Massage therapy has been practiced for thousands of years and across many cultures. It promotes a balance of the body and its systems and as a result, it helps detoxify and heal physical, mental and emotional states.
Here are a few reasons why you want to say “yes” to yourself, when you’re thinking “maybe”….
Physical Benefits of Massage
- Relieves muscle tension, stiffness and pain by stimulating the release of endorphins or “feel-good hormones”.
- Improves the healing time of strained muscles and sprained ligaments; as well as reducing pain, inflammation, swelling, and the formation of scar tissue because of increased blood and lymph flow.
- Enhances the health and nourishment of the skin.
- Improves flexibility and range of motion.
Improved Blood and Lymphatic Circulation
- Improves blood circulation which supply nutrients to individual cells improving joint movement and lowering blood pressure.
- The lymphatic system is a network of tissues and organs that help rid the body of toxins and waste. Massage promotes the stimulation of the lymphatic system thus strengthening the immune system so you are less susceptible to illnesses and your body is better able to heal itself.
Mental Benefits of Massage
- Stress Relief –
- During massage cortisol is released, which lowers stress levels in the body. When your stress levels are lower, blood pressure lowers which aides to relieve anxiety and depression.
- Improves Concentration –When you feel relaxed and calm, you are more alert, focused and concentrate better. Your mind can be more creative and productive.
- Promotes Better Sleep – Massage promotes calm thinking by relaxing the mind and the body; which can lead to a better and deeper sleep. Getting adequate sleep can help to reduce irritability, fatigue, and increase the ability to think clearly
Daily life challenges create stress that influences our mind-body connection. This is a complex relationship between our thoughts, our bodies and emotions. Regular massage therapy can improve your emotional well-being by helping you feel relaxed and nurtured.