Modalities, Training, and Philosophy
What does "Deep Tissue Massage" mean? In short -many things! A variety of styles and techniques (often referred to as "modalities") exist promoting work with the deeper tissues in the body. I have studied Neuromusular Therapy, MyoFascial Release, and Swedish massage, all of which use varying pressures and angles to treat tension in the muscles or connective tissue.
I sometimes hear concerns from new clients that deep tissue might be "painful" or "unpleasant." My philosophy around deep tissue massage is it doesn't need to be painful to be effective. That being said, occassional discomfort -referred to as "therapeutic pain"-can occur when working with particularly sensitive trigger points or deep-held patterns.
I use a slow and steady increase in pressure just up to the client's edge of tolerance and check in to see how the person is handling the work. Although I have many tools at my disposal to interpret how the pressure feels, only the person on the table has access to his or her own nerves, and how it feels to them is the most important feedback. I feel strongly about empowering my clients to speak up and let me know if adjustments need to be made.
Relaxation massage works to engage the parasympathetic nervous system (PNS). When the PNS activates, it stimulates the body's own systems for relaxation -lowering cortisol (the stress hormone) production, deepening the breathe, and aiding in digestion.
The main Relaxation modality I use is Swedish massage -a variety of flowing and kneading strokes which aid circulation and muscle relaxation. This type of massage is often associated with spas. I also have training in the UpLedger style of CranioSacral Therapy, which uses a variety of neck and cranial holds to promote relaxation.
Relaxation massage is a great option for anyone needing to destress -whether that stress is from work, school, family, or physical exertion. It can be particularly helpful to clients who are especially sensitive to pressure.
What to expect
during your session:
After you fill out a health history form, we will sit down in the massage room for a short intake to chat about your needs and goals for the session.
You'll have privacy to disrobe to your comfort level (knowing that there will be appropriate and modest draping during the massage), then I'll come back to the room to begin the massage.
Most sessions contain a combination of techniques from Swedish to deep tissue (unless otherwise requested).
Silence is completely acceptable when receiving bodywork, and the lack of expectation to chat can add to the de-stressing effect. I'm also happy to talk with you about any questions or concerns you have during the session, although I may ask you to enjoy silence during neck work, as talking engages the neck muscles, making it more difficult to massage them.
You can expect a clean, comfortable, and calm atmosphere with good light, soothing music, and a non-judgmental, open welcome from your therapist.