Hot stone massage is a massage therapy technique that is known for bringing lasting relief from stress and tension, as well as acting as a healing agent for injured muscles. It is popular in Europe, but has grown in popularity in the United States as well.
What to Expect From a Hot Stone Massage
If you decide to receive a hot stone massage, expect to remove all of your clothing (except your underwear, which you can leave on if you wish) and to lie down on a covered massage table.
The massage therapist will cover you with a light blanket, removing it only to work on specific areas. After a gentle massage using your choice of oil or lotion, hot stones will be strategically placed on various parts of your body. These stones will radiate penetrating heat into your tense muscles and injured areas of your body, stimulating blood flow to those areas and melting tension.
The massage therapist may choose to rub your muscles or pressure points with the hot stones, using gentle circular motions as he or she rubs out the knots and promotes healing.
Using Hot Stones in Massage
A typical stone formation is to lay stones along either side of the spine in corresponding locations to the chakras. Stones may also be placed on the palms of your hands. The therapist will hold stones in his or her hands as she massages your legs, arms and torso, using the stones to apply the pressure of your preference. You can ask the massage therapist to adjust the level of pressure to what is comfortable, yet works your muscles deeply.
Because bacteria can grow at warm temperatures, stones are kept hot in 120 to 130 degree water. The therapist may need to use gloves to remove the stones from the heating device.
The benefits of hot stone massage therapy are well documented. Relaxation is a plus, but increased blood flow and pain relief are also typical benefits. You will leave an effective hot stone massage feeling relaxed, rejuvenated and with reduced levels of pain.
Sports massage is creating favorable interest in a variety of sports, and is highly recommended by athletes and trainers. The value of sports massage to the athlete is extensive; sports massage enables athletes to perform at their highest level, recover quickly and painlessly, and grow their muscles and strength in the process.
With so many types of massage available to you, which type of massage therapy should you request?