No longer just a treat for a pampering day, massage is an intergral component in health care and stress relief and should be viewed as such. In today’s fast paced world, most of us are under chronic stress. Massage can be a fast and effective way of breaking the vicious cycle of stress feeding more stress. Massage triggers a relaxation response that counters to stress response and promotes various restorative processes. As a massage progresses and the relaxation response kicks in, you’ll find that your breathing deepens. Your heart rate and blood pressure decrease. Muscles start to relax as tension is gently kneaded out of your muscles. Painful sensations gradually subside. Your mind is also put at ease as you focus on the pleasant sensations and break the cycle of mental overload. Studies show that anxiety and depression decrease and your mood improves, possibly through the release of endorphins.
Although the relaxations effects of massage are immediate, the real benefits come when massage is used on a regular basis. Research has demonstrated that as your experience with massage increases, the effects become more pronounced and more long lasting . Repeatedly experiencing feelings of deep relaxation with massage helps you recall those feelings of relaxation through your daily activities. Massage also makes you more aware of sensations in your body allowing you to notice more subtle signs of stress and tension. Heed these early warning signs and you can take control of your stress before it gets out of control.
Massage, once a luxury for the elite, is now becoming a necessity for people trying to cope with fast paced lives. The New York Times