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Massage is the treatment and practice of soft tissue manipulation with physical, functional, and in some cases psychological purposes and goals.The word comes from the French massage "friction of kneading," or from Arabic massa meaning "to touch, feel or handle" or from Latin massa meaning "mass, dough".(In distinction the ancient Greek word for massage was anatripsis,and the Latin was frictio). An older etymology may even have been the Hebrew me-sakj "to anoint with oil".
Massage involves acting on and manipulating the client's body with pressure (structured, unstructured, stationary, and/or moving), tension, motion, or vibration done manually or with mechanical aids. Target tissues may include muscles, tendons, ligaments, skin, joints, or other connective tissue, as well as lymphatic vessels, and/or organs of the gastrointestinal system. Massage can be applied with the hands, fingers, elbows, forearm, and feet. There are over eighty different massage modalities. The most cited reasons for introducing massage have been client demand and perceived clinical effectiveness.
In professional settings massage involves the client being treated while lying on a massage table, sitting in a massage chair, or lying on a mat on the floor. The massage subject may be fully or partly unclothed. Parts of the body may be covered with towels or sheets.
An authentic hot stone massage is not simply the "gliding" of heated stones lightly upon the surface of the skin, but rather the stones are used as tools to deliver effective tissue and muscle massage at a pressure level comfortable to the client. The client can request light, medium or deep pressure, which is the beauty of the hot stone massage technique. It can be customized in an instant to the request of the client. The hardness of the stones makes for a fantastic deep tissue massage and is easy on the joints of the therapists hands.
A good stone massage, when properly performed, will accomplish many of the goals and benefits of other massage modalities. Many paths often lead to the same destination - and so it is with a great stone massage.
There are benefits for those who receive regular massage during their pregnancy (although even one or two sessions can be hugely beneficial).
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