You Relax Massage ~ What is it?
Massage is defined as the systematic manipulation of the soft tissues of the body for a curative effect. It is the manipulation of superficial and deeper layers of muscle and connective tissue using various techniques, to enhance function, aid in the healing process, decrease muscle reflex activity, inhibit motor-neuron excitability, promote relaxation and general well-being. In other words, it is designed to improve things for your body. It mobilizes soft tissues, making them more pliable, and stimulates and nourishes the skin. Massage promotes circulation and blood flow and brings about healing effects: physical and psychological changes for general wellbeing. Physically, it stimulates systems of the body that can be used to reduce swelling in certain types of oedema. Psychologically, massage produces a feeling of relaxation. Self-awareness is increased and there is the pleasant feeling of being cared for and looked after. At You Relax Massage we are not just about relaxing though.
What does it involve?
The system of massage treatment involves the therapist using their hands, arms, elbows etc to apply pressure on your body. Therapists use various techniques to work on the body, including stroking and gliding (effleurage), kneading the soft tissues (petrissage), moving of limbs, stretching, pressure, and what is termed ‘percussion’ (tapotement). Massage will often also involve specific breathing during certain times of massage to help the body adjust during the treatment.
What are the benefits?
Massage therapy is extremely beneficial to people leading busy lifestyles suffering from what is now commonly encountered work related stress. Massage will not only aid with mental relaxation but will work on physical symptoms of back and neck pain that comes from sitting for an extended period of time at a desk or from physical labour.
The importance of taking regular massage has heightened in recent times as more people recognise how beneficial it is as a way to counteract the effects of sitting in front of a computer screen daily. Corporations are beginning to realise these benefits for staff well-being and as a way to increase productivity. By offering staff Massage vouchers as a part of employee benefits, it could go a long way to help reduce staff stress levels, which in turn will make for a more cooperative relaxed work environment, which in turns aids productivity, and decreases sick leave! Work related stress is a serious problem in society leading to poor health, disease and even death. This situation might be helped if employers take the opportunity to enlist the services of a professional Massage Therapist who will educate staff about the benefits of relaxation and massage.
Many people wait until they are already in pain or suffering spinal injuries before turning to massage, but why let it get that bad? It is a good idea to take regular massage as a preventative measure so that such injuries do not occur. Regular massage maintenance will increase your overall sense of well-being for optimum physical and mental health, helping you to achieve your goals.
Massage is used to treat a wide range of disorders, such as:
Headaches and migraines
Work related stress
Repetitive strain injury
Depression and Anxiety
Eating disorders and digestive dysfunction
Pre-natal pregnancy conditions
Sports and dancing injuries
The power of healing in massage may be thought of as the energy that flows through the therapist’s hands in touch to refresh, regenerate and revitalise the body of the client. Basically, the benefits of a good massage is attested to by the fact that Private Health Funds will usually provide customer rebates for the services we provide. We are registered with every Private health Insurance fund and have Provider Numbers for each one (expect HCF which is currently not recognising any therapists from the Massage Association of Australia). Credit card facilities and HICAPS is also available allowing customers to claim their rebate on the spot and only pay the difference.
Who does the massage?
Massage is performed through the hands of a professionally trained and qualified Massage Therapist. This person will work out a treatment plan, determined by an informed interview and by muscle testing. You Relax Massage is currently available in Mount Waverley, however, we are also able to offer limited and occasional mobile massages at home, or corporate massage via the workplace by appointment. Corporate packages are available on request. Our future vision is to looking at opening in a number of locations, with a variety of specialist therapists, to complement our current offering.
Types of Massage
There are literally hundreds of different forms of massage on offer, and it can be confusing to know what will work best for a particular ailment or condition. Some massage concentrates more on relaxing the client whilst others will work more deeply at repairing damaged muscle tissue. It may be that you need to try several forms of massage to find what works best for you.
Here is a brief summary of some commonly found massage therapies:
Swedish (Relaxation) Massage – is a system of long strokes, kneading, friction, tapping, percussion, vibration and shaking motions that apply pressure between muscles and bones, rubbing in the same direction as the flow of blood returning to the heart. Swedish Massage, also know as Relaxation Massage feels good, is relaxing and invigorating. It is also the most commonly found style of massage practised. This style of massage is not covered by private health insurance and no rebates will be available.
Therapeutic Massage – is basically any massage with a purpose, and this term incorporates many different massage modalities.
Deep Tissue Massage – focuses on the deeper layers of muscle tissue. It is designed to reach the deep sections of thick muscles, specifically the individual muscle fibres.
Remedial Massage – works to heat muscles and tendons that are damaged, impaired or knotted. It holistically treats the whole body and traces the discomfort back to the original cause. It uses specialised techniques to support and speed up the body's own repair mechanisms. The massage is applied directly to the skin usually with an oil lubricant. Passive stretching moves are also employed.
Sports Massage – developed especially for athletes who need to quickly alleviate stress or injury, sports massage can help an athlete prepare for competition, support their bodies during an event and help them to recover afterwards. While pinpointing target areas that may be related to sports such as running, tennis or golf, sports massage can also help anyone suffering chronic pain, or motion-based injury.
Connective Tissue Massage – this technique is connected to the Myofascial release technique, and does not involve the use of oil or lotion. It can relieve chronic tension, improve posture and relieve painful symptoms of chronic diseases such as Arthritis, Tendonitis, TMJ and Sciatica.
Hot Stone Massage – aids the client to experience deep relaxation. The therapist places heated basalt stones on the body’s acupressure points. A series of Swedish Massage style techniques is used with the therapist holding smooth stones and applying essential oils to work away muscle tension. This is often seen as the ultimate indulgent massage experience.
Shiatsu Massage - (shi meaning finger and atsu meaning pressure) is a type of alternative medicine consisting of finger and palm pressure, stretches, and other massage techniques. Similar to this is Deep Ischemic Pressure (DIP). Pressure is applied to a certain part of the muscle, stretching it and helping it to reset (de-knot) itself. This is basically Trigger Point Work. Often a distinct crunch or click may be felt when pressure is applied to the right area.
Cupping - is an ancient Chinese therapy in which a cup is applied to the skin and the pressure in the cup is reduced (either by heat or suction) in order to draw and hold skin and superficial muscles inside the cup. Sometimes, while the suction is active, the cup is moved, causing the skin to be pulled. This is called gliding cupping. Because we work with a lot of body builders and models, this is the style we prefer to implement as it minimises any dark circles appearing on the skin.
At You Relax Massage, rather then having to choose a particular style of massage, we encourage you to let us know what pressure you would prefer. To ensure we mare all on the same page, we suggest the following as a guide:
- a firm grasp without pain on your arm we would count as being a 1 or 2 on our pressure guide
- an 8 out of 10 is when you are clenching or gritting your teeth in discomfort. We believe that there is no good reason for you to endure such pressure and will remain under that score. This also ensures that you will not suffer any internal muscle bruising that is often experienced by non-diploma/unqualified therapists.
So we provide you then with three options to choose from:
1. GO LIGHTLY: I just need to relax and want a gentle soothing massage. (1-4 on our pressure scale)
2. FIRM WHERE IT’S NEEDED, BUT LET ME RELAX: Please challenge my tight muscles and knots, but give me time to also relax. (1-6)
3. DEEP AND THERAPEUTIC: Please fix my problems by focusing on the tight areas. I’ll let you know if it’s too strong. (5-7)
Depending on what you select will give us a general idea of what style of massage would work best for you. In our client interview and muscle testing phase of the appointment, the Therapist will discuss options they think will work best for you.
What should I expect from our massage services?
Pre/Post Massage Assessment:
As part of our ongoing commitment to the highest standard professional massage therapy, each client is properly and thoroughly assessed prior to any treatment. Anticipate that this assessment may take up to 5-10 minutes. New clients are asked to come 5 mins or so early, to complete a new client information form, or they can download one here to print of, fill in and bring along to their appointment.
During this time, your therapist will get a general idea of your current state of health, and how they are best able to assist you. Some physical tests or movements will help indicate the range of motion, or the lack there of which may explain your symptoms. Doing this before and after your massage will help provide a baseline of how the massage has helped you.
Homework and Self-care:
Not only will you receive the highest level of massage care and service, you will also be offered, where determined suitable, various stretches or exercises that will be helpful to provide you ongoing relief. We reckon that if you find a similar ache or pain returning, it would benefit you more to be able to know how to help yourself with a bit of self-care, rather than pay someone to fix yourself.
If you went to Gordon Ramsay's restaurant and received a basic meal that did not live up to the high expectations that Ramsay has, you would say something, or you wouldn't want to be paying for your meal. We believe that you should have the same expectations from any allied health care worker, including our massage therapists. If during your treatment, you find that our touch is too hard or too soft, too fast or too slow, or there is anything not to your liking, please speak up and let us know. If you then get to the end of the massage and you are not completely satisfied with the level of treatment care and service provided, you don't pay! It's as simple as that.