Beneficial Effects of Massage Therapy
Interesting massage benefits that one can expect from receiving a professional massage.
Massage is the systematic manual application of pressure & movement to the soft tissue of the body-the skin, tendons, ligaments, and fascia (the membrane surrounding muscles & muscle groups). It encourages healing by promoting the flow of blood & lymph, relieving tension, stimulating nerves, & stretching & loosening muscles and connective tissue to keep them elastic.
1) Massage reduces waste products such as lactic acid & carbonic acid that build up in muscles after activity and cause cramping, discomfort, and irritability. It also enhances the immune system and aids recovery from soft tissue injuries by increasing blood circulation to injured areas.
2) Massage dilates or opens up blood vessels, improving the circulation and relieving congestion. Massage also increases the number of red blood cells, especially in cases of anemia.
3) Massage acts as a “mechanical cleanser” pushing along the lymph and hastening the elimination of wastes & toxic debris. Massage helps to eliminate edema (or dropsy) of the extremities through lymphatic massage.
4) Massage increases the blood supply and nutrition to the muscles without adding to their load of toxic acid, produced through voluntary muscle contraction (such as exercise). Massage thus helps to overcome harmful “fatigue” products resulting from strenuous exercise or injury.
5) Massage improves muscle tone and helps prevent or delay muscular atrophy resulting from forced inactivity. Massage relaxes muscle spasms and relieves muscle tension.
6) Transverse massage (a therapeutic massage technique) separates muscle fibers, undoing or preventing the formations of adhesions. Massage stretches connective tissue, improves its circulation and nutrition so that it breaks down or prevents the formation of adhesions, and reduces the danger of fibroids.
7) Massage can compensate, or at least in part, for lack of exercise or muscular contraction in persons who because of injury, illness, or age are forced to remain inactive. In these cases, massage helps return venous blood to the heart and so eases the strain on this vital organ.
8) Massage may have a sedative, stimulating, or even exhausting effect on the nervous system, depending on the type and length of massage treatment given.
9) According to some authorities, massage may burst the fat capsule in the subcutaneous tissue so that the fat exudes and becomes absorbed. In this way massage, combined with proper nutrition and exercise, can aid in weight loss.
10) Massage increases the excretion (via the kidneys) of fluids, nitrogen, inorganic phosphorous, and salt in normal individuals, however, in individuals convalescing from bone fractures, massage encourages the retention of nitrogen, phosphorous, and sulfur which are necessary for tissue repair when damage is present.
11) Massage improves the general circulation and nutrition of tissues. It is accompanied or followed by an increase interchange of substances between the blood and tissue cells. Heightening tissue metabolism.
12) Massage improves the circulation and nutrition of joints and hastens the elimination of harmful particles in the synovial fluid. It helps to lessen inflammation and swelling in joints, thereby alleviating pain.
13) Massage disperses the dema following injury to ligaments and tendons, lessening pain, and facilitating movement.
14) Massage empties the larger ducts and channels of the body, thereby decreasing the auto-intoxication resulting from re-absorption of toxic materials in these channels due to constipation or inflammation.
15) Massage is an invaluable aid to physical fitness. No other single health technique is more versatile.