The history of massage
Ancient China is believed to be the first known civilization to use 3000BC therapeutic massage techniques. Healers then used pressure we now see in modern therapies like Shiatsu and Acupressure. The classic Chinese medical text Huang Ti Nei Ching Su Wen(‘ The Classic of Internal Medicine of the Yellow Emperor’) in c.2600 B.C makes the following recommendations:
“When the body is frequently shocked and frightened, the circulation in the veins and arteries ceases and disease is caused by numbness and lack of sensation. Massage and medicines prepared from the lees * of wine are used to cure this.”
The art of massage developed further in Japan in the 6th century AD to include energy manipulation within the body (using energetic pathways or meridians). As its popularity grew, massage practice became more widespread and Greece can be traced back nearly 2,500 years to the first mention of it in Europe. There are also records attributed to the Greek physicist Hippocrates in Greece from the 5th century, who called massage ‘ Anatripsis ‘ (to massage upwards) and wrote:
“The physician must be acquainted with many things and assuredly with anatripsis, for things whichhave the same name have not always the same effects, for rubbing can bind a joint that is too loose,or loosen a joint that is too hard.” .”
While massage techniques have differed widely around the world as its popularity has increased, the emergence of Swedish full body massage is commonly attributed to a Swedish fencing master called Per Henrik Ling (1776-1839) Ling traveled extensively to China and read Chinese medical writings translations. He developed a massage and medical gymnastics system that he called the Ling System, also known as the Treatment of the Swedish Movement.
Early massage methods that followed the Ling system guidelines were much stronger than modern massage In order to trace the development of modern massage methods, we need to look at the contributions of three individuals who were instrumental in developing gentler and less painful massage movements. These people are Professor Albert J. Hoffa (1859-1907) wrote ‘ Technik der Massage, ‘ which remains one of the clearest descriptions of body massage techniques. In modern massage, many of these techniques are found.
Charcot (1825–1893) is known as the “founder of modern neurology.” He named multiple sclerosis and was the first person to describe it. Sigmund Freud was one of his many well-known students.
James B. Mennell (1880-1957) wrote’ Movement, Manipulation and Massage Physical Treatment.’ He was a medical officer and lectured at the St. Thomas’s Hospital Training School in London in massage. Mennell worked constantly to raise awareness of the importance and usefulness of massage in the medial setting of time
Effects and benefits
Overview, It is important to look at how the client responds physiologically and psychologically to understand the effects and benefits of the full body massage. Ie: body as well as mind. Through the skeletal system, muscle system, cardiovascular system, lymphatic system, and nervous system, the physical body benefits from massage. It will also benefit through improvements to the skin, respiratory system, digestive system, and urinary tract functions. The effects are no less dramatic in psychological terms. the full-body massage has remarkably relaxing effects on the state of mind of a client. It can create a sense of well-being, improve the image of the body, promote positive awareness of the body and enable deep levels of relaxation. Therefore, the full body massage is an ideal choice of complementary therapy for both clients with physical aches and pains as well as clients with stress or unhappiness. In both body and mind, it makes you feel good.
Effects and benefits in detail
Physiological effects & benefits:
• Can release common restrictions and enhance joint mobility.
• Soothes tight muscles, rigidity, and spasms.
• Increases muscle flexibility and range of motion.
• Improves circulation delivering more nutrients to the muscles.
• Improves circulation releasing toxins and waste from the muscles.
• Reduces muscular fatigue and soreness in the muscles.
• Reduces ischaemia (poor blood-flow) easing localised pain and tissue dysfunction.
• Reduces oedema (excess fluid in the tissue) by increasing lymphatic drainage.
• Strengthens the immune system.
• Combination of techniques used can stimulate and soothe the nervous system.
• Stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system that reduces stress.
• Releases endorphins (the body’s natural painkillers and mood enhancers).
• Improved circulation resulting in quicker regeneration and healthier skin.
• Increased sweat production leading to better toxin removal through the skin.
• Improved skin colour and elasticity leading to younger-looking skin.
• Increased sebum production improves skin’s suppleness and resistance to infection.
• Deepens breathing and enhances lung capacity through relaxing breathing muscles.
• Improves digestion and supports constipation, IBS, colic, and wind relief.
Psychological effects & benefits:
Reduces levels of stress and anxiety.
Promotes deep levels of relaxation.
Improves feelings of vigour and energy.
Stimulates physical activity.
Increases posture awareness.
Helps to alleviate depression.
Rejuvenates the body and mind.
Can increase self-esteem feelings.
Eases emotional trauma.
Promotes feelings of happiness.
The students most frequently ask the following questions. Please do not hesitate to contact the D2D Therapies if you have any other questions as you begin to practice the therapy.
Q: How long should a Swedish full-body massage therapy last?
A: A Swedish full body massage (front and back body) can be delivered easily in 50 minutes using all the techniques described in the manual. For the first visit of a client, you should add 15-20 minutes to the consultation process. Consultation for subsequent visits should simply be a record of any changes since the last treatment and the appointment time could therefore span only one hour.
However: once you are confident of all the techniques, you may also want to offer customers shorter treatment options. For example, you could offer a massage of the back or a massage of the back, shoulder and neck. These are two popular (and cheaper) variations on a full-body massage.
Q: How much should I charge for the therapy for my clients?
A: Researching the cost of similar therapy in your local area is a guide to how much to charge the best idea. (Remember to compare “like-for-like” ie: do not expect the therapy offered by a single therapist with a small rural practice to be the same as the therapy offered by a large, opulent spa). If you don’t charge more than your competitors, you will find it easier to attract customers. However, you may want to consider limited special offers to attract business or offer regular customers loyalty bonuses. An exception to this rule would be that if no one in your area offers the therapy or therapies you are doing, you can charge a higher fee.
Q: My client talks a lot during therapy What approach do i take?
A: A good approach to this situation is to instruct the client, before the therapy begins, with something like: “sorry sir/madam i would like not to start any unneccesary conversatiobs during therapy as i would like you to focus on relaxing and trust in the health benefits of therapy please feel free to ask any questinos you have which are related to this subject”
Q: I was recently asked to deliver Swedish massage after a car accident to a client who was on painkillers. I did not decide to do the therapy on the patient. Was I mistaken?
A: No, withholding treatment is never wrong if you think it will do more harm than good. Before asking for therapy, anyone who experiences pain due to a recent injury must receive permission from their medical professional. This permission is unlikely to be granted while the person is still being treated with medication in the process of recovery from an accident.
Q: What if my client hasn’t been washing and has a strong body odor recently?
A: If you don’t have a customer shower at your premises, then you may choose to ask the customer to come back on another occasion when they’ve had the opportunity to bathe in advance. If you want to go ahead, you can ask the customer if they want to freshen up with a body wipe (make sure they have some to hand). This means that they can get fresh and hygienic to massage quickly.
Q: What do I do if my customer is particularly thin or overweight?
A: If your customer is very slim then start the massage with a light pressure and ask the customer to let you know if with each new technique they want more or less pressure. There are additional considerations if your client is very overweight. You must first check to ensure that there are no excess weight-related medical conditions (i.e., high blood pressure or diabetes). It is also important to have a wide and sturdy couch of good quality. You should know the maximum weight within this limit that your couch will support and work well. The couch should be adjustable to a lower height than you would normally use because even a few inches higher than normal above the customer will allow you to apply more pressure. It will normally require additional pressure because the client will have more body tissue and often have larger muscles that are likely to be tense due to prolonged inactivity. The practitioner should also bear in mind that they will be more tiring to massage a very large or very muscular client.
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