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Monday, 11 September 2017

5 reasons why you should try Deep Tissue Massage

All the worries of the day disappear as you lay face down on the massage table as you surrender to the soft, gentle hands of a masseuse who knows exactly where you hurt. That’s right, nothing works like a good massage to get you refreshed and energised for the rest of the week. And for the massage addict, there is a dizzying array of types of therapies to choose from: Swedish, Thai, Aromatherapy or the less conventional Hot Stone massage. But have you tried the deep tissue massage yet?

Lately, deep tissue massage has captured the fancy of the fitness world. The massage gets its name from the fact that it targets the deeper muscles that are situated below the top muscles, and it’s praised for its ability to release severe and chronic muscle tension by relaxing deepest layers of muscle tissues, the tendons and fascia. It mainly focuses on areas of the neck and the lower back, relaxing muscles that tense up because of tension and stress. The masseuse usually employs his entire arms — fingers, elbows, forearm, and palms– to render a deep tissue massage.

The massage works best for those with chronic pain, who perform high-intensity activities like athletics. Even corporate professionals who experience body ache from sitting slouched in front of the computer for long hours can benefit from the massage.

As compared to other popular massages that are softer on the body, deep tissue massage involves a firmer touch and more pressure. If you are not the one for a deeper, more intense rubdown, maybe it isn’t for you. But if you are game, there are some really awesome health benefits of deep tissue massage.

(Read:7 tips to get the best out of a relaxing massage)

Reduces back pain
Back pains can literally be a pain to deal with. You can sit, stand or even walk, let alone get to work. Usually, back pains can be tackled with a rejuvenating massage and they seem to be very effective. A study conducted in 2012 compared the efficiency deep tissue massage with therapeutic massage. For ten days, 26 patients with chronic back pain were tested and it was seen that deep tissue massage was more effective than therapeutic massage. 1

Reduces chronic stress
High stress is a part and parcel of modern professional life. But if left unchecked, stress can wreck havoc on your health. Chronic stress and muscle tension can cause inflammation in the body, which can manifest as various other health problems like cardiovascular diseases and cancer. There are many ways to kick stress and a good massage is one of those ways. If you are worn out by stress, a deep tissue massage will help. 2

Soothes chronic pain
A 2014 study compared the efficiency of deep massage to posterior calf muscles in combination with neural mobilisation exercises to treat heel pain in the subjects of the study. At the end of the study, deep massage emerged as the winner in treating the heel pain. This opens the possibility of using deep tissue massage therapy as a means to heal pain in patients suffering from chronic pain like fibromyalgia. 3

Brings down high blood pressure
There is no dearth of things in our lives that can make our blood pressure hit the roof. What you need is a deep tissue massage to reduce your stress hormones, lower your depression and subsequently decrease your diastolic and systolic blood pressure. A 2008 study has shown that deep tissue massage can bring down high blood pressure, apart from lowering arterial pressure in people with hypertension.4

Enhances athletic performance and hastens recovery
Sports massage is a kind of deep tissue massage performed before the event to prevent chances of injury and to aid in fast recovery. It works in the same way as warm up exercises would. The massage aids in reducing muscle soreness, healing tissues and promoting mental well-being in the athletes. It can also aid lactate clearance, which helps the athletes perform better. 5

1. Romanowski M, Romanowska J, Grześkowiak M. A comparison of the effects of deep tissue massage and therapeutic massage on chronic low back pain. Stud Health Technol Inform. 2012;176:411-4. PubMed PMID: 22744541.

2. Avey H, Matheny KB, Robbins A, Jacobson TA. Health care providers’ training,perceptions, and practices regarding stress and health outcomes.

3. Saban B, Deutscher D, Ziv T. Deep massage to posterior calf muscles in combination with neural mobilization exercises as a treatment for heel pain: a pilot randomized clinical trial.

4. Kaye AD, Kaye AJ, Swinford J, Baluch A, Bawcom BA, Lambert TJ, Hoover JM. The effect of deep-tissue massage therapy on blood pressure and heart rate. 5. Moraska A. Sports massage. A comprehensive review. J Sports Med Phys Fitness. 2005 Sep;45(3):370-80. Review. PubMed PMID: 16230990.

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