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04 Nov 2019

Massage Terms Defined

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For many who have thought about, or have received a Swedish massage but didn’t completely understand some of the verbiage or techniques used by the therapist, here is a breakdown of key terms and techniques that are utilized during treatment – to help answer any lingering questions you may have.

Swedish Massage

Swedish massage is one of the most common massage therapy techniques used, as it focuses on the overall relaxation, circulation, and physical and mental wellness of the person. This technique includes utilizing the processes of gliding, kneading, tapping, stretching, and cross-friction strokes – with the goal of relaxing the muscles as best as possible. This type of massage is more of a soothing type, as opposed to a more vigorous or pressure type of treatment.

Massage Terms Defined

Combined, the therapist uses these various massage techniques to improve circulation and the movement of lymphatic fluid, which is a key component to the immune system and the healing of tissues. Some of the more popular techniques utilized include:

  • Effleurage: These are basically strokes of varying length, applied in different directions. Usually the first technique that a therapist will learn, the goal is to warm the tissue, as a transition between other techniques, or a cool down at the end of a session. The pressure and speed of the strokes can be modified according to the goals and stage of the client treatment.
  • Petrissage: This is probably the second most popular form of Swedish massage. It includes a myriad of movements such as lifting, squeezing and compression with both hands, applied either more broadly with the whole hand, or in a more targeted way using only the fingers.
  • Tapotement: This technique is based on using a rhythmic percussion created by the edge of the therapist’s hands, a cupped hand, or the tips of the fingers. There are generally 5 variations of this treatment including beating, tapping, cupping, slapping and hacking. These are designed to wake up the nervous system, as a stimulating stroke, or to release lymphatic buildup.
  • Active and passive movements: These techniques, often used in tandem during massage treatment, are basically methods that do not require the patient to move their muscles if they are experiencing any ongoing pain. A series of stretching, guiding and bending movements are used to heal any sore or injured areas of the body.

For more information about our spa services, we welcome you to visit theresasfaceandbody.com

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