Research continues to show the enormous benefits of touch—which range from treating chronic diseases, neurological disorders, and injuries, to alleviating the tensions of modern lifestyles. Consequently, the medical community is actively embracing bodywork, and massage is becoming an integral part of hospice care and neonatal intensive care units. Many hospitals are also incorporating on-site massage practitioners and even spas to treat postsurgery or pain patients as part of the recovery process.
Getting a massage can do you a world of good. And getting massage frequently can do even more. This is the beauty of bodywork. Taking part in this form of regularly scheduled self-care can play a huge part in how healthy you’ll be and how youthful you’ll remain with each passing year. Budgeting time and money for bodywork at consistent intervals is truly an investment in your health. And remember: just because massage feels like a pampering treat doesn’t mean it is any less therapeutic. Consider massage appointments a necessary piece of your health and wellness plan, and work with your practitioner to establish a treatment schedule that best meets your needs.
M A S S A G E T H E R A P Y & M O R E
Massage has existed as long as there have been human beings. It is a nature instinct to “rub away pain” which can be considered the simplest form of massage. Chinese Literature in 3000 BC shows that massage, exercise, martial arts and meditation were considered complete health.
Hindu Writings in 1800 BC indicates massage was used for weight reduction, sleep aid, relaxation and fatigue. The Hindu was also interested in hygiene, so they combined massage with bathing and shampooing.
Greeks in 300 BC used massage and exercise as a part of their daily regular routine. Soldiers were given regular massages to ease pain and fatigue during training, as well as before and after tournaments.
physicians and massage
Herodicus, in 5th Century BC, was a Greek physician who professed to have great success in prolonging lives with a combination of massages, herbs, and oils.
Hippocrates, 460 to 380 BC. is considered the Father of Medicine. He claimed that he could improve joint function and increase muscle tone with massage. He also believed that massage strokes should be carried toward the hearth rather than the feel. This was astonishing since there was no knowledge of blood circulation at that time.
Per Henrik Lind, 1776 to 1839, was a physician who formulated Gymnastics. Gymnastics originated as a combination of massage and exercise.
John Grosvenor , 1742-1823, was an English surgeon and professor at Oxford University who demonstrated the benefits of massage therapy in reliving stiff joints, gout and rheumatism. Although he did not include exercise in his treatment, he believed the healing of joints and tissues were by the action of friction and rubbing.
In World War II massage was used in English hospitals to treat injuries.
benefits of massage
Assists venous flow of blood
Encourages lymphatic flow
Stimulates sensory receptors of the skin and subcutaneous tissues
Provides gentle stretching of the tissues
Encourages endorphin release
Can stimulate or sooth nerves