You will encounter many different forms of massage depending where around the world you travel. However in this modern age, you can probably find all significant forms of massage within a close proximity.
There is nothing better than having a great massage right? There’s one big problem though. There are a lot of massage techniques out there and you don’t know which one’s right for you. There’s Swedish, shiatsu, reflexology, hot stone, etc., etc.
But there’s one massage that might just be what you need. It’s the so-called remedial massage. It is also known as sports massage or medical massage and is one of the most misunderstood forms of this therapy. However, if it is properly implemented by a professional remedial massage therapist, it can provide you a lot of benefits for ailments and injuries.
The list of benefits provided by remedial massage is almost endless. It helps increase your range of motion, improve mobility, and enhance blood circulation. In this article, we will give a general overview of remedial massage, who it is for, and how to find a qualified therapist for this technique.
So, What Is This So-Called Remedial Massage?
According to doctors, remedial massage is utilized to aid in the treatment of various medical conditions for patients with an identifiable problem. It’s different from other massage techniques and is done by a qualified remedial massage therapist. It is usually categorized as a healing or therapeutic massage.
Remedial massages are usually done to prevent and manage injuries. These include soft tissue and muscular injuries and are usually performed with the guidance of physicians and other types of health professionals. It is commonly used in combination with other treatment methods and as part of a comprehensive treatment plan. Aside from being a therapeutic type of treatment, it can provide relaxation benefits as well.
The Benefits Of Remedial Massage
Once you get to know remedial massage, you might be thinking about NFL or NBA players being rubbed down on their legs. This type of massage is commonly used to prevent and treat sports injuries. However, there’s more to it than those two.
The benefits of remedial massage include the following:
- It helps to reduce pain.
- It helps to alleviate chronic pain conditions.
- It helps to prevent sports injuries.
- It helps in the management of sports and exercise injuries.
- It helps release tightness and tension within the muscles.
- It helps improve blood circulation. This, in turn, enhances oxygenation of the various parts of the body.
- It makes recovery periods faster especially for those who rigorously train day-in, day-out.
- It helps flush toxins and chemicals from the body. These toxins might be responsible for the tightening of the muscles.
- It helps in the healing and breakdown of scar tissues especially after surgery.
- It helps improve the flow and helps with lymph fluid drainage. This is especially important for cancer and lymphedema patients. Thus, it leads to reduce swelling within treatment areas.
- It helps with headaches, sciatic pain, back pain, and abdominal pain.
- It helps with whiplash, muscle cramps, fibrositis, muscular atrophy, arthritis, and spondylitis.
Remedial Massage Vs. Other Massage Types
It’s very difficult to differentiate remedial massage with other types of massages provided in spas, clinics, and beautician centers. Usually, the latter’s main purpose is relaxation. However, the major difference between remedial massage and other types of massages is the training and certification necessary to perform it.
Remedial massage training isn’t a week-long course. It’s a very rigorous and lengthy process. This sets remedial massage apart from common techniques. Massage therapists have their own name with regards to the healthcare industry.
Training for remedial massage involves a lot of pathology and physiology. The person being trained in this type of massage needs ample knowledge in advanced anatomy and pathology. He or she should also have clinical experience.
Relaxation is different from preventing and treating sports and exercise injuries. There’s nothing wrong with going to a spa for relaxation. However, if you need more than that, then you can opt for remedial massage therapy.
This type of therapy is not as fun as it seems. A recovery period is necessary in order to enjoy its benefits. Depending on the needs of the client, discomfort or pain can be experienced from about 24 to 72 hours after the session. People who opt for this massage technique might feel like they’ve gone through a hard workout because the deep tissues are treated. It is also important to note that remedial massage is not a sensual type of massage.
Who Are The Best Candidates For A Remedial Massage?
Simply put, it is for anybody with a particular medical condition that benefits from certain techniques of massage therapy. Remedial massage is commonly used in sports science or sports medicine. It is also common with high-level and professional athletes. They use this technique to prepare and recover. However, remedial massage can be beneficial for those with tension- or stress-based pain.
To have a general overview, if stress is at the core of your life, your muscles will contract and tighten. This might be caused by various factors such as poor posture and sitting for lengthy periods of time at an office.
Other types of people who would most likely benefit from this technique include:
- People suffering from disc problems and back spasms.
- Cancer patients suffering from lymphedema due to their treatment.
- People experiencing chronic pain.
- People who have undergone through surgeries. This is especially true for those who had joint replacement surgery and arthroscopy. It helps with scarring and soft tissue healing.
Techniques Used In Remedial Massage
Therapists trained in remedial massage utilize a wide array of techniques for their clients. These techniques help to manipulate soft tissues and muscles and are highly-advanced compared to other massage forms. The widely used techniques in remedial massage include the following:
Trigger Point Therapy
This is utilized for the treatment of stressed areas which has taut muscle fibers within the body. Most people have this condition within their neck, back, shoulders, glutes, buttocks, and calves. Trigger point therapy can sometimes cause pain and discomfort. It involves the application of pressure on a specific trigger point for about 6 to 12 seconds before it is stretched.
This technique utilizes petrissage movements which are usually deep in order to manipulate soft tissue. Petrissage motions are like kneading movements which involves the palm of the hand and the thumb.
Other techniques mostly used in remedial massage therapy include soft tissue massage, deep tissue massage, assisted muscle stretching, joint mobilisation, and Swedish massage.
Characteristics To Look Out For In A Professional Remedial Massage Therapist
Obviously, training and certification are the things to look out for in a professional therapist. Be cautious of opting for remedial massage therapy in pop-up clinics. You have to ensure that they have diplomas and they’re actually registered with an association. You can also ask how long the therapist have studied and where they actually got their training.
The period of time they took to train in remedial massage therapy is very important. Ten days worth of training isn’t going to make them professionals in the technique. A few months won’t do also. It is best to look for a professional that has “at least” a year of training full-time which includes practical experience as well.
A good place to find remedial massage therapists is to look for reputable multi-disciplinary health centers. In addition, word of mouth can be a great start too.
To Wrap It All Up
Remedial massage therapy is not limited to high-level, professional athletes alone. It can be for everybody who has conditions that might benefit from the said technique. If you have a medical condition, try consulting with a doctor first. And fif remedial massage therapy is advised, try to find a remedial massage therapy center nearby.
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