What is Massage Therapy?
Massage therapy is the assessment and manipulation of soft tissues and joints of the body to effect a therapeutic response in the treatment and prevention of physical dysfunction. It can be preventive or restorative, helping to maintain, rehabilitate, augment physical function or relieve pain. Massage therapy has firmly established its role as a clinically-oriented health option used to relieve a variety of discomforts because it achieves undeniable results.
Massage can help alleviate the soft tissue discomfort associated with everyday stress, muscular overuse and many chronic pain syndromes. If employed early enough after accidents involving trauma and injury, massage therapy can greatly reduce the development of painful muscular patterning.
What Massage Therapy can do for you?
Massage can be used in the treatment of the acute and chronic stages of specific conditions. Treatment also enhances an individual’s overall sense of emotional and physical well-being and quality of life.
Massage therapy can help with a range of conditions. Some examples are:Sports injuries
Inflammatory conditions (arthritis, bursitis)
Carpal tunnel syndrome (repetitive strain)
Chronic fatigue syndrome
Stress and stress related conditions
Therapeutic massage is an important part of your health maintenance plan:
Reducing or eliminating pain
Improving joint mobility
Improving immune system functioning
Increasing lymphatic drainage
Reducing depression and anxiety
Reducing tension within muscles
Increasing body awareness
Massage therapy benefits people of all ages. While it benefits the injured, the ill and the stressed, the real strength of massage therapy lies in prevention.
A wide range of hands-on techniques are used during massage. These include effleurage (gliding strokes), petrissage (lifting and kneading) and percussion. These techniques stretch and loosen connective tissues and muscles, effect movements that assist the action of the joints, and combine to increase function and range of motion thereby reducing muscle tension.
Massage therapy may include other modalities or specific techniques, such as:
Hydrotherapy (the use of heat and cold)
Trigger point therapy
Myofascial therapy (connective tissue work)
Deep tissue massage
Manual lymphatic drainage
Hot stone massage therapy
How often should you have massage therapy?
Some people believe that one treatment is enough; however, massage therapy is most beneficial in acute conditions when used over a series of treatments and then followed up with maintenance or preventive treatments.
Through mutual discussion, your Massage Therapist can help you establish a program which fits your physical needs and lifestyle. Your Massage Therapist is most interested in your recovery and in the maintenance of your health. Any recommendation for further treatment is being made by a qualified health professional and is made with your utmost care in mind.
A Massage Therapist is a regulated health professional
Only members of the College of Massage Therapists of BC are permitted to use the title Massage Therapist or Registered Massage Therapist and use the letters MT or RMT with their names.
Massage therapists have completed a 2-3 years diploma program from a recognized massage therapy school and studied anatomy, physiology, pathology, physical assessment, neurology, treatments, ethics and other subjects.
Massage therapists participate in a Quality Assurance Program that assists them in the maintenance of high professional standards and quality care of their clients.