A Beginner’s Guide to Massages


Have you always wanted to get a massage, but you’ve never gotten around to booking an appointment? Maybe you have too many things on your plate to make time, or you simply don’t know enough about massages and are hesitant to try.

Whatever your situation, massage therapy is an effective way of relaxing your mind, stretching tight muscles, and improving your range of motion. While massages are widely thought of as a luxury and an extravagance, many people enjoy regular massage appointments to better their quality of life.

Depending on your treatment goals, your massage therapist may recommend a specific technique. Read on to learn about three of the most common massages, and how they may benefit you.

What is a remedial massage?

A remedial massage, otherwise known as a sports massage or medical massage, is recommended if you have a specific area of discomfort. Unlike a typical relaxation massage, a remedial massage is aimed at relieving tension, healing your injury, and helping you prevent further injuries from occurring.

While athletes typically benefit from this type of massage the most, as it keeps their bodies limber and flexible, there are additional benefits of this massage beyond muscle tension relief. For instance, a remedial massage can help improve circulation, break down post-surgical scar tissue, and promote the drainage of lymphatic fluid.

What is a deep tissue massage?

A deep tissue massage targets typical areas of discomfort, such as the lower back, legs, and neck. Your massage therapist will apply varying levels of pressure to these areas in order to reach the deeper levels of muscle and fascia.

There are several benefits that a deep tissue massage offers. In addition to treating chronic conditions, such as lower back pain and fibromyalgia, a deep tissue massage can improve mobility, relieve muscle tension, and correct posture. However, a deep tissue massage can be an intense experience for some, since the massage therapist will need to apply greater levels of pressure. Make sure to speak with your massage therapist to gauge your comfort level.

What is a Swedish massage?

A Swedish massage is the most common type of massage and is typically offered to those wishing for a relaxing and stress-reducing experience, rather than a pain relief treatment. This massage will also loosen tight muscles and may reduce minor sources of discomfort.

Typically, a Swedish massage will stimulate nerve endings, increase blood flow, and reduce levels of stress. Many people who have not tried a massage before, but wish to experience it, will start with a classic Swedish massage first.

How they all compare

Essentially, remedial massages, deep tissue massages, and Swedish massages are similar in their approach. They all aim to relieve muscle tension and accomplish this through manual manipulation of the body by a trained massage therapist.

However, remedial and deep tissue massages are specialized techniques that should only be pursued if you have a specific source of pain. They are targeted massages that aim to improve mobility and treat chronic conditions or recent injuries. A Swedish massage is excellent for relaxation and light muscle relief and is a favorite amongst those who just wish for a classic massage experience.

Book your first massage today!

Are you ready to schedule your first massage appointment yet? Have you been convinced of the benefits of massage therapy? If so, then it’s time to visit Active Back to Health, located in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Our massage therapists will be happy to go over your treatment goals and create a plan that fits your needs.

Give us a call at 403-252-3316, or visit our website today to book your massage appointment.

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