What is Massage?
Very simply, massage is the physical action of working into the body’s muscles and connective soft tissue structures, such as ligaments, tendons and fascia. Various techniques are adopted where the therapist uses their fingers, hands, elbows and at times treatment equipment to apply light, medium or firm pressure to stretch and relax muscles and connective tissues. Massage is especially beneficial if you are suffering from stress and tension, chronic pain or after an injury.
Read more about what and how we treat on our blog
New to Massage?
If you are new to massage you may want to read below the answers to the questions most frequently put to massage therapists before a first treatment, including:
- What are the benefits of massage?
- What to expect during a massage session?
- What to expect after a massage?
- How often to have a massage?
We have selected the exercises we most frequently advise our patients to do and turned them into short video clips.
What are the Benefits of Massage?
Massage can reduce pain and discomfort, increase a person’s range of movement and promote a feeling of relaxation and overall wellbeing. Massage is used in the treatment of a wide range of conditions, such as tension headaches, stress, back, neck & shoulder pain and to help with the whole body maintenance in chronic conditions such as arthritis, sickle cell anaemia and Parkinson’s to name but a few.
What to Expect During a Massage Session?
On your first visit, your massage therapist will start with a short consultation and ask you about your medical history, current physical condition, reasons for seeking a massage and current lifestyle. S/he may also conduct a postural assessment to better tailor the treatment to your needs.
The therapist will ask you to remove your clothing to a comfortable level – usually your underwear. A towel is provided for draping during the massage. The therapist will uncover only the part of the body being massaged so that your modesty is respected and that you are kept warm.
During treatment you will be asked to lie down on a massage table. At Bridge to Health we use a range of high quality oils and will take into account any allergies or sensitivities you may have. At the end of the treatment the massage therapist will discuss any treatment findings and may recommend stretches or exercises and discuss the benefit of future treatments.
What to expect when you visit Bridge to Health
Read an overview of what to expect when visiting an osteopath here, and about other patients’ success on our testimonials page.
What to Expect After a Massage?
We recommend that you drink water after a massage to help remove lactic acid released during the treatment. We also recommend that you do not consume salt and alcohol after treatment as they inhibit the body’s ability to remove toxins.
You may feel soreness after a massage, especially if you had a deep tissue or sports massage. This is normal and ought to fade within 24-48 hrs.
How often to Have a Massage?
This varies greatly from person to person and will be determined by your general health and condition but also by the intensity of physical exercise you do. If you are experiencing chronic pain you may need a weekly massage to obtain relief and address underlying issues. We recommend that our sedentary desk-bound patients receive a massage once every 4 to 6 weeks for maintenance and prevention purposes. Athletes preparing for a sporting event - marathon, triathlon - may require more intensive massage treatment in the build-up and recovery phases.