What are some of the different types of massage?

Everyone loves a good massage, whether it’s to fix your aches and pains or just to relax after a hard week at work. But there are so many different types of massage that it can be confusing to know which to go for and what you’ll be getting when you ask for it.

Here is a quick guide to some of the most common types of massage:

Swedish massage
Swedish massage is the kind that you will come across most often. The speed and pressure applied during a Swedish massage can vary depending on your tolerance and what you would like to achieve from the massage. The massage therapist will use oils to lubricate your skin and work at your muscle tissue to relieve tension and loosen up knots in your muscles, leaving you feeling relaxed afterwards.

Deep tissue massage
This is similar to Swedish massage except, as the name suggests, it targets deeper layers in your body, particularly your connective tissues. Greater pressure is placed on your body by the massage therapist, which can cause some discomfort, but it is incredibly effective at removing tension and knots. Always let your massage therapist know if the pressure is too much for you, as everyone’s pain threshold is different.

Aromatherapy massage
The techniques used in aromatherapy massage are essentially the same as those in Swedish or deep tissue massage, except the oil used by the massage therapist contains essential oils from plants such as lavender or eucalyptus. The massage therapist will generally use a combination of oils based on your needs to help to relieve stress and tension, helping you to feel more relaxed both during and after the massage.

Sports massage
Like deep tissue massage, sports massage applies more pressure to work away tension and help prevent or cure pains and injuries. It is useful for helping athletes to improve their performance and recover more quickly after workouts, but it isn’t just for sports people. Anyone who develops aches and pains from working or from their day-to-day lifestyle, for example, can benefit from sports massage as well.

Hot stones massage
A more unconventional treatment, hot stones massage incorporates, you guessed it, hot stones! The stones are placed on your body to help warm up the muscles by increasing blood flow before the massage therapist begins to apply pressure to them.

Prenatal massage
If you are pregnant then many types of massage will not be suitable for you due to the pressure or heat that might be involved. Prenatal massage is designed specifically to soothe and relax expectant mother, both mentally and physically, resolving any pains that may have come from carrying the extra weight. Massage also benefits pregnant women as it aids blood flow to both the mother and her baby.

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Hopefully this quick guide has helped you figure out the difference between some of the most popular types of massage, but there are many more! Which one is right for you?

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