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Deep Tissue Massage: The Ultimate Guide to Total Body Care

Deep tissue massage has been touted as the ultimate way to achieve total body care. In this guide, you’ll learn what deep tissue massage can do for your mental and physical health, why it’s the best option for chronic pain, and some of the best ways to integrate deep tissue massage into your routine. You’ll also learn about some of the common misconceptions about this type of therapy, including myths about pressure used during a session and how long you should expect results to last.


Introduction

A deep tissue massage is a therapeutic massage that focuses on the deeper layers of muscle and connective tissue. Deep tissue massage addresses chronic patterns of tension in the body, including tightness or rigidity, which are often caused by stress, long periods of immobility, postural misalignment, or lack of mobility. Unlike a Swedish massage which may focus primarily on the superficial muscles (those closer to the surface), a deep tissue massage targets those muscles that support major joints and work deeply with fascia and ligaments. In this type of massage, the therapist applies firm pressure on both sides of the muscle while it’s stretched to release knots and help break up adhesions. It also helps alleviate pain caused by poor posture, injury, or motor vehicle accidents; arthritis; fibromyalgia; back injuries; neck pain; sports injuries; emotional stress disorders such as PTSD or anxiety-related problems.


Benefits of Deep Tissue Massage

By stimulating the muscles and joints of the body with targeted compression, deep tissue massage can work wonders on your back, shoulders, neck, hips, and other parts of your body. This style of massage is more intense than a regular Swedish or Shiatsu massage – it will often take you out of pain with fast-acting relief. Furthermore, deep tissue massage isn’t recommended for pregnant women as it puts pressure on the uterus and can trigger contractions. Those who have sciatica, herniated discs, or osteoporosis should also avoid this type of massage. Other people who may not be suited for deep tissue massage are those with circulatory problems, high blood pressure, and those that have recently had surgery in the area being massaged. Those who want to receive this type of massage should consult their doctor before doing so.



Types of Stretching

To understand deep tissue massage, it's important to understand the different types of stretching. Many doctors believe that some forms of stretching can cause harm when they are overdone or used incorrectly. Generally, you should avoid going too far or using force when stretching your muscles. Below are five types of stretches with which most people are familiar:


1) Static stretch- A static stretch is done by holding a position for about 30 seconds with no movement in order for your muscles to adjust and relax before performing another stretch


2) PNF Stretching- PNF stretching (or proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation) is designed to help lengthen shortened muscles while simultaneously toning them up. PNF stretching works by taking one muscle group at a time and contracting it against resistance as far as possible, then slowly releasing the contraction while maintaining tension on the muscle group.




Comparison with Swedish massages

Swedish massage focuses on the outer layer of muscles and connective tissue while deep tissue massage treats deeper layers. Deep tissue massage is a therapeutic, hands-on modality that targets chronic muscle pain and tension through slow strokes and heavy pressure.


This modality is best for someone who needs extra attention on areas of tight or knotted muscles as well as for someone with a specific injury that needs targeted care. It can also be used to manage injuries caused by repetitive motion, such as carpal tunnel syndrome. It is often considered more intense than other types of massages but it can be less expensive since it requires fewer sessions than other types of massages to see results.


When you should get a deep tissue massage

Everyday life often leaves us feeling stiff and sore. Fortunately, deep tissue massage is the perfect way to relieve tension in tight or restricted muscles in your neck, shoulders, back, hips, arms, and legs. It is also helpful for releasing physical stress or trauma from accidents or surgery. You can receive a deep tissue massage anywhere you feel soreness or pain, including the feet, hands, and abdomen.


How to Find a Good Therapist

A great way to find a qualified therapist is through word of mouth. Ask friends, family members, coworkers, or acquaintances about the best massage therapists they've ever been to. Another option is to go through your insurer's provider directory and look for massage therapists who are either in-network or out-of-network providers. If you have any specific needs—like those requiring wheelchair accessibility—consider calling around and asking about that as well.



Tips for Getting Used to it

It can take a while for your body to get used to deep tissue massage and it can feel much more intense than other kinds of massage. If you need some tips on how to prepare, here are a few suggestions for steps you can take before your session so that you can really relax and enjoy the benefits of deep tissue massage.

1) Drink plenty of water in the days leading up to your appointment.


2) Stay away from caffeine and alcohol in the days leading up to your appointment (though they may be okay on the day).


3) Wear loose clothing or something that is easy to remove after your treatment.


4) Avoid exercise on the day of your appointment, as this can lead to muscle soreness or injury.


How Much Does it Cost? And Where Can I Get it?

Deep tissue massage is typically one of the most expensive types of massage therapy. A full-body deep tissue massage costs about $130 for a 60-minute in home massage session, which typically includes the travel fee. Some people might be turned off by that price, but when you consider the increased flexibility and well-being that comes with regular deep tissue massage sessions, it's worth the investment.


Do's and Don'ts Before Getting the Treatment

Getting a deep tissue massage isn't always easy, but there are many steps you can take in order to ensure you're the most comfortable during your appointment. Here are our do's and don'ts for the perfect deep tissue massage experience.


  • Don't wear a tight shirt or anything that constricts your body movements. This will only make it more difficult for the therapist.


  • Don't eat heavy meals before your appointment. You'll be lying on your stomach while getting the treatment, so if you have eaten much beforehand, this may not be enjoyable. If you want to enjoy the full benefits of a deep tissue massage, try eating something light such as soup with protein or juice mixed with protein powder.


  • Do drink water before and after your appointment. It's important to stay hydrated while receiving a deep tissue massage since they can dehydrate people due to their intensity of work on muscles and connective tissues.


Wrap Up

Taking care of your body is the first step to feeling better in your everyday life. It’s essential that you learn about the benefits and experience for yourself just how effective Deep Tissue massage can be in treating muscle soreness, tension, and even chronic pain. Giving yourself a little time out can give you renewed energy to take on everything life throws at you. Remember that everyone deserves a little self-care. You deserve it!


Conclusion

At the end of a session, deep tissue massage can leave you feeling lighter, and more flexible than ever before. Most people report being able to sleep better after a deep tissue massage and come away with fewer aches and pains. Many also report not only physical improvements but an improved sense of well-being. It's time to give deep tissue massage a try!



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