Archive for the 'Massage Benefits and Types of Massage' Category

Sep 29 2011

Massage: The Missing Link in Addiction Treatment

People in the early stages of addiction recovery often experience an uncomfortable gap between their body and mind. Therapeutic massage can bridge that gap, and is a powerful adjunct treatment in the addiction and recovery process.

Substance abuse is a major public health problem. According to the National Institute of Drug Abuse, substance abuse costs our nation more than $484 billion per year. This includes costs related to crime, medical care, treatment, social welfare programs, and time lost from work.

Comprehensive treatment for the addicted individual is the key to turning this health crisis around. In the October 2003 edition of Counselor, The Magazine for Addiction Professionals, Joni Kosakoski, BSN, RN, CARN gives us the fuel to propel massage therapists into the realm of drug and alcohol treatment. In her article “Massage: Hands Down, a Treatment for Addiction”, Kosakoski gives us a clear and concise analysis of massage’s benefits for this population and its place in addiction treatment.

Incorporating massage into a substance abuse program is advantageous in all of the stages of quitting an addiction: withdrawal, detoxification and abstinence. The physical, emotional and spiritual components of recovery all can be directly benefited by the healing power of therapeutic touch. The nurturing contact of massage utilizes skin as the translator of the therapist’s intent. Skin, the largest sensory organ in our body, is our primary sense for connecting information from our external surroundings to our internal environment.

The Touch Research Institute in Miami, Florida has performed scientific research documenting the physiological effects of massage on the body. Kosakoski reminds us of some of their findings on massage such as decreased pain, diminished autoimmune response, enhanced immune response, and increased alertness and performance. These effects appear to be related to massage’s ability to reduce cortisol, a stress hormone, as reported by the Touch Research Institute in 2003. Several of the Touch Research Institute’s studies positively document the ability of massage to decrease anxiety, depression, agitation, and cravings.

In order to understand the connection between massage therapy and its benefit in addiction treatment, Kosakoski explains the neurological biochemistry of addiction: “Much attention has been directed to the mesolimbic reward system, the so-called ‘pleasure pathway’ of the brain. The area is activated in part by the release of the neurotransmitter dopamine, the chemical messenger responsible for making us feel good when we engage in any pleasurable activity. It is well known that dopamine is significantly involved in addiction and that dopamine levels are lower than average during the withdrawal process and into early recovery until brain chemistry normalizes.”

In 1998, the Touch Research Institute published the findings that a regular massage regimen produced long-term results of increasing dopamine levels. The fact that massage naturally increases dopamine levels, and decreases cortisol levels makes it a perfect addition to a standard detoxification program.

The neurochemistry of an addict takes time to get back into balance, so massage treatments after the initial detoxification phase is crucial. When a person uses a substance to feel good, his/her body stops manufacturing its own “feel good” chemicals, (endorphins), and the substance takes over that task. Therefore, when a person quits using an abused substance, they lose their source of feeling good. Since it takes time for the body to start manufacturing its own endorphins again, this is a challenging interim to endure. This interim is the recovering addict’s most vulnerable time to relapse.

In the 1989 edition of General Pharmacology, Kaada and Torsteinbo of Norway reported on study results that massage therapy increased the amount of beta-endorphins in the blood by 16 percent. The release of endorphins during a massage allows the recipient to feel normal, even fantastic, without the aid of a drug. This can be a powerful, even life-changing experience for the client.

On a physical level, the circulation that occurs with massage is also a desired occurrence during the detoxification process. Therapeutic massage’s invigoration of blood and lymphatic fluid allows for a more efficient exchange of oxygen rich nutrition into the body’s tissues, and the delivery of toxic waste products out of the body’s tissues. Kosakoski adds that “All systems of the body function more efficiently with improved circulation and a reduction in tension of the soft tissues and musculature…”

On an emotional level, part of an addict’s recovery process is learning to identify and manage the triggers that cause them to desire escape. Regular massage sessions can aid the client’s awareness of his or her own body, including where and when tension exists. Being conscious of these patterns is a step toward recognizing one’s own resistance, which can lead to healthfully addressing emotions associated with cravings and stress. In addition Kosakoski says that “Emotional release can commonly occur with massage, which provides a safe, non-threatening opportunity to begin the process of recovering long-buried emotions and memories.”

On a spiritual level, the deep relaxation of a massage can provide a still inner place for the recipient to connect with themselves. Being grounded, centered and fully present can be experienced when receiving therapeutic touch from a grounded, centered and fully present practitioner. A recovering addict has a whole new world opened to them when they acknowledge that they can simultaneously be anchored, present, feel good and be substance-free. As Kosakoski explains, “To allow oneself to surrender to the practitioner’s hands — to breathe fully and easily, to acknowledge and receive the gifts of nurturing, surrender and relaxation ….is an invaluable addition to the newly recovering person’s repertoire of relapse-prevention skills.”

Massage has the unique ability to affect all of our layers of being — from the spiritual plane all the way up to and including our body’s chemical composition. In the process of abandoning an addiction, these many parts of ourselves become fragmented. It is merely a matter of time before all addiction and recovery treatment programs recognize massage’s ability to mend the mind-body connection. When that happens, therapeutic massage will be integrated into addiction treatment, and clients will be optimally prepared to succeed in their recovery.

Posted by Nicole at 12:18 PM
© 2009 Institute for Integrative HealthCare Studies. This work is reproduced with the permission of the Institute. www.Integrative-Healthcare.org

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Jan 28 2010

KUNDALINI & CHAKRA CONSCIOUSNESS

A practitioner of Tantra does everything with absolute presence. The emphasis is on connection to and immersion in every moment. So sex is a Tantric practice when it is experienced in this way – this includes sensual touch and massage. There are a lot of things that create separation in sex – being goal-orientated or trying to get a ‘result’, anxieties about ‘performance’, having an idea in one’s mind about how sex ought to be or ‘what works’, guilt/feeling you shouldn’t enjoy sex, being distracted e.g. by what happened at work today, unresolved issues within the relationship etc. etc….

I read an article in a magazine recently in which couples were talking about their sex lives. One male partner said proudly of sex with his wife “we have become more efficient at sex – because we know what works ” – jeez!!
Tantric touch, massage or sex is not something you do to somebody. But it can become corrupted. I have had clients (predominantly male) who want to learn Tantric massage as if it is something you do to a woman. They are the guys who say “I just want the woman to have pleasure. That is what gives me pleasure” Call me a cynic but I interpret this statement as “I am an egomaniac. I am validated by feeling I am a good lover. Yet I am shut down. And the idea of just being one with another person is terrifying.”

GETTING HIGH
A lot of neo-Tantric groups, teachings and practices such as Tantric massage are a little bit like taking ecstacy. They create a high and a sense of being really open and connected. This can really plant a seed of how life can be so they can be a positive experience if they lead a person towards personal and spiritual growth. But you have to be able to be open and connected while waiting for the train, travelling to work, getting the groceries, cooking dinner etc. as well .

REGARDING KUNDALINI & CHAKRA CONSCIOUSNESS

You can awaken sexual chi and circulate it through the body and it has great health giving benefits. The kundalini however however and its journey through the chakras takes a little more work. Without going into too much detail think of the firing process and yin convergance – undoing the conditioning and returning to pure consciousness – that is the process of awakening the chakras. It is through the letting go of beliefs, opinions, false sense of self – everything that creates separateness that awakens the kundalini. Awakening is experienced on an energetic level – remember in class when Sam had that moment of letting go of a deeply held belief and he felt an energetic opening. In Tantra the conditioned mind is known as ‘differentiating mind’ and “when the differentiating mind is lulled and sleeps, kundalini awakens” I LOVE THAT LINE – SO TRUE!

So kundalini – its a bit more than moving sexual energy. Psychological transformation is needed exactly the kind of stuff we studied all last year. It is the letting go of what ever separates us from really being in the moment that is true Tantric practice. Tantric Hi Ross

Thanks for sending the article.

A practitioner of Tantra does everything with absolute presence. The emphasis is on connection to and immersion in every moment. So sex is a Tantric practice when it is experienced in this way – this includes sensual touch and massage. There are a lot of things that create separation in sex – being goal-orientated or trying to get a ‘result’, anxieties about ‘performance’, having an idea in one’s mind about how sex ought to be or ‘what works’, guilt/feeling you shouldn’t enjoy sex, being distracted e.g. by what happened at work today, unresolved issues within the relationship etc. etc….

I read an article in a magazine recently in which couples were talking about their sex lives. One male partner said proudly of sex with his wife “we have become more efficient at sex – because we know what works ” – jeez!!
Tantric touch, massage or sex is not something you do to somebody. But it can become corrupted. I have had clients (predominantly male) who want to learn Tantric massage as if it is something you do to a woman. They are the guys who say “I just want the woman to have pleasure. That is what gives me pleasure” Call me a cynic but I interpret this statement as “I am an egomaniac. I am validated by feeling I am a good lover. Yet I am shut down. And the idea of just being one with another person is terrifying.”

GETTING HIGH
A lot of neo-Tantric groups, teachings and practices such as Tantric massage are a little bit like taking ecstacy. They create a high and a sense of being really open and connected. This can really plant a seed of how life can be so they can be a positive experience if they lead a person towards personal and spiritual growth. But you have to be able to be open and connected while waiting for the train, travelling to work, getting the groceries, cooking dinner etc. as well .

REGARDING KUNDALINI &CHAKRA CONSCIOUSNESS

You can awaken sexual chi and circulate it through the body and it has great health giving benefits. The kundalini however however and its journey through the chakras takes a little more work. Without going into too much detail think of the firing process and yin convergance – undoing the conditioning and returning to pure consciousness – that is the process of awakening the chakras. It is through the letting go of beliefs, opinions, false sense of self – everything that creates separateness that awakens the kundalini. Awakening is experienced on an energetic level – remember in class when Sam had that moment of letting go of a deeply held belief and he felt an energetic opening. In Tantra the conditioned mind is known as ‘differentiating mind’ and “when the differentiating mind is lulled and sleeps, kundalini awakens” I LOVE THAT LINE – SO TRUE!

So kundalini – its a bit more than moving sexual energy. Psychological transformation is needed exactly the kind of stuff we studied all last year. It is the letting go of what ever separates us from really being in the moment that is true Tantric practice. Tantric massage can be good practice though same as meditation, Tai Chi, yoga, dancing …. can be good practice though same as meditation, Tai Chi, yoga, dancing ….

By Litza Hall

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Oct 04 2009

Unusual Spa Treatments

Doctor Fish
Japanese spa goers are currently enjoying the Doctor Fishes special foot bath, which some claim to help cure skin complaints. However this is no ordinary foot bath and certainly no ordinary doctor. Doctor Fish is in fact the Garra rufa fish, a tiny fish that eats the dead skin from the feet of visitors. So far the treatment has yet to take off outside of Japan, but if the treatment is as good as they say it might not be long till fish is on the menu and not just of the local chip shop.

Bain de Vin
Many spas offer a grate selection of food and drink for visitors to indulge in after there treatments, some however are taking things a bit further by offering the drinks as treatments themselves. At a thermal spa in Japan guests can bathe in red wine mixed with the natural hot spring waters. The red wine is supposed to rejuvenate the body and has been used since the days of Cleopatra who used to take red wine baths herself.

Ssssssnake Massage
This one is defiantly not f or the faint hearted. As the name suggests this massage is not give by a therapist it is instead give by a variety of snakes. The snakes are placed on the back of the spa patron and are allowed to writhe and wriggle away which apparently is very soothing and relaxing, once you have gotten over the initial terror of being covered in snakes!

Boozy Bath
A much more enticing prospect than the snakes, the Beer bath is an invention of a Czech brewery that has opened an adjacent spa. the have mixed healing mineral water with a specially brewed beer which is said to rejuvenate the skin. If that is simply not enough beer for you then fear not because a bath side bar will be serving the finest beer in the Czech Republic.

Charley and the Chocolate Bath
We have all probably got cover in chocolate as a child at one point or another and most of us will have gotten into trouble for it too, however this spa in Japan has other ideas. Chocolate is added to hot spring water and spa seekers can wallow in the chocolaty substance which is supposed to help keep moisture in the skin and keep the skin looking beautiful. It also has the added bonus of being delicious too.

Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow
A new spa at Caesars Palace in Las Vagas are offering people a chance to get away from all the heat of the desert by heading to there ice spa. In the ice spa snow falls gently down from the ceiling with mint infused air set at a constant 12 degrees Celsius.

The Midas Touch
Again in Japan they have come up with an exclusive spa treatment for gold lovers everywhere. Rather than just wearing gold jewelry people are now being given the chance to turn there face golden too. For a mere $250 24-carat gold leaf is placed over the face to create a golden mask the Pharos would have been proud of.

This article was written by Tom Sangers on behalf of Titanic Health Spa In Yorkshire who provide a relaxing and invigorating spa seekers.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Tom_Sangers

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Sep 17 2009

Massage Benefits and Types of Massage

Massage is a widely used therapeutic procedure that has been used for thousands of years for healing the diseases of patient. It has also a preventive aspect to protect and preserve the health. It has occupied an importance place in Naturopathy. This article discusses the health benefits of massage and various types of massage.

Benefits of Massage

There are various benefits of massage. It removes fatigue and pains, increases vision, produces good body, good sleep, and good skin. It eliminates toxins out of the body from the skin. It stimulates circulation of the blood and soothes the nervous system. It reduces the tension in the muscles and relieves muscular pain. Systematic massage reduces the burden on the heart, and thus increases its efficiency.

Types of Massage

There are five methods of manipulation of massage. They are:

1. Effleurage (Stroking)
2. Petrissage (Kneading)
3. Friction (Rubbing)
4. Tapotement (Percussion)
5. Vibration (Shaking or Trembling)

Effleurage (Stroking)

This type of massage is done with strokes over the body on the skin. It is also done in five different ways: palms of one hand; palms of two hands; the knuckles; the ball of the thumb; the finger tips. Effleurage has various benefits. It increases circulation of blood. It soothes the nervous system. It is beneficial in lean, thin individuals. It relaxes and warms the skin and muscles.

Petrissage (Kneading)

In this type, pressing, rolling and kneading of the muscles, skin and tissues are done with one or both hands or with thumb or thumb fingers. A light pressure is done for superficial kneading. For deep kneading heavy pressure is to be done. Petrissage massage is beneficial for muscles, to strengthen it, to nourish, and relieves the congestion of intestines and it eliminates poison and soothes the nerves.

Friction (Rubbing)

In this type, circular massage is done over and around the joints. It is helpful in toning the muscles, and tendons of the joints. It reduces the pain, redness and swelling which are the cardinal signs of the inflammation.

Tapotement (Percussion)

In this type, tapping, clapping, hacking and beating is done by sticking the human body rapidly. Quick and short blows are commonly gives by wrist. Tapotement has various benefits. It is useful in wasting of muscles. It soothes the nerves. It strengthens the muscles.

Vibration (Trembling)

In this type of massage, pressing and shaking on the body either by use of hands or fingers is done. It is beneficial in neuralgia, neuritis. It not only stimulates circulation but also the nerves. It regulates the bowel. It is used to tone up the muscles and to relieve pain in the body. This massage is done from electrically operated machine by a trained person.

Disclaimer: This article is not meant to provide health advice and is for general information only. Always seek the insights of a qualified health professional before embarking on any health program.

Copyright © Nick Mutt, All Rights Reserved. If you want to use this article on your website or in your ezine, make all the URLs (links) active.

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Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Nick_Mutt

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