Massage is perhaps one of the oldest healing traditions. Many cultures over the centuries have been proven to have used massage therapy in medical treatment for its healing effects. The Ancient Greeks, Egyptians, Chinese and Indians were convinced of the therapeutic properties of massage and used it to treat a variety of ailments.
Massage is the application of manual techniques to the soft tissue to mobilise them to maintain flexibility. Massage is especially effective in breaking compensatory pain postures and patterns. When applied regularly massage can reduce muscle tension and break the pain cycle.
One of the immediate benefits of massage is a feeling of deep relaxation and calm. This occurs because massage prompts the release of endorphins, the brain chemicals (neurotransmitters) that produce feelings of wellbeing. Levels of stress hormones, such as adrenalin, cortisol and norepinephrine, are also reduced. Studies indicate that high levels of stress hormones impair the immune system.
Some of the physical benefits of massage include:
- reduced muscle tension
- improved circulation
- stimulation of the lymphatic system
- reduction of stress hormones
- increased joint mobility and flexibility
- improved skin tone
- speedier healing of soft tissue injuries
- heightened mental alertness
- reduced anxiety and depression.
Information sourced from http://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au