Therapeutic massage is an age-old healing art, which can alleviate physical, mental and emotional ailments. The practice dates back to the Chinese in 3000 BC. Other references in the bible refer to anointing the body with oil. In 460 BC, Hypocrites prescribed it as a beneficial treatment for his patients.
Carol Jordan practices therapeutic massage with great skill.
Massage is an instinctive human response. When we bump ourselves we rub it, the ‘ouch’ soon goes away. Mothers have done this throughout history for their children when they hurt themselves. This basic instinct has been slowly developed over countless generations into a sophisticated healing art and science.
In one form or another, massage developed in all the nations of the Old World. Hippocrates, who is considered a father of medicine, said that all physicians should have experience of the techniques of rubbing. It is recognised that rubbing can bind a joint that is too loose, or loosen a joint that is too rigid.
In 1813, the Royal Central Institute was established in Stockholm, Sweden. Here, the known massage movements were studied scientifically and systematised. This was the most important single modern development in the field of massage, and it is because of this that remedial massage is often called “Swedish”.
Massage Therapy is:
- The holistic application of physical touch to affect the systems of the body (i.e. the muscular, skeletal, digestive, elimination, respiratory, circulatory, lymphatic, endocrine, emotional, mental and nervous systems).
- The manipulation the soft tissues of the body with the hands for therapeutic, healing, relaxing and pleasurable effects.
- The loving touch of the heart expressed through the hands. Not physiotherapy or any practice of manipulation of the skeletal structure.
There are many different approaches and applications to massage:
A general, whole body massage using oils on the skin to facilitate treatment. This is the basis of all Western forms of massage treatment.
Deep Tissue / Sports Massage:
This approach is powerful and sometimes painful, although the benefits can be great. It is helpful in restructuring the body and improving posture.
The use of naturally occurring essential oils to enhance treatment. Often used as a treatment in itself, with different oils being applied to different parts of the body. Pure essential oils have great healing properties.
In all there are over 400 recognised styles of massage.
Carol Jordan is the Aromatherapy Consultant for the Association of Physical and Natural Therapists, which represents a number of therapies such as aromatherapy, reflexology, massage and sports massage: Association of Physical and Natural Therapists.