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Which Massage Styles Are Best?

Booking a massage is not a one-size-fits-all kind of process. There are lots of different styles of massage and different benefits to gain from them. So, which massage style is the best? There’s no single answer to this question. The best thing to do is talk to your massage therapist about what you hope to gain from massage and they should be able to advise you on the best style of massage for you.

Before then, you can do some research by reading this article to find out a bit more about different types of massage.

Swedish massage – A full body massage that uses long kneading and shorter tapping strokes to make the muscle more pliable. Focuses on top layers of the tissue, so light pressure is used.

Deep tissue massage – Similar techniques to Swedish massage, but more pressure is applied to reach deeper layers of tissue. Deep tissue massage can be full body, but more often focuses on a particular area of tightness or injury.

Sports massage – One more step up, a sports massage typically uses stronger pressure than a deep tissue massage, targeting the muscle itself rather than the connecting tissues on top of it. Often used by athletes for recovery and performance, but is equally beneficial to non-athletes.

Thai massage – As well as pressure and manipulation, Thai massage involves stretching the muscles. Your massage therapist will put you into positions to stretch and twist the body. Can often be done fully clothed.

Hot stone massage – Heated stones are placed on the muscles or used as a massage tool to improve circulation and release tension. Problem areas may be targeted or specific acupressure points around the body.

Reflexology – This also targets specific points of the body that correspond to energy lines throughout the body. The feet, hands, and ears are typically the many focus points. Another massage style that can be done almost fully dressed.

Cupping – Glass cups are heated and placed on the body to pull the skin and tissues into the resulting vacuum. Cupping provides a number of benefits for muscle tension, immune system, and overall relaxation.

Pregnancy massage – Also known as prenatal massage. A form of massage that is safe to perform during pregnancy. Helps to relieve stress and anxiety as well as physical pain and discomfort.

Corporate massage – Fully-clothed massage performed in the workplace using a specialized massage chair. Usually targets the back, neck, and shoulders – areas that often become tense from working at a desk all day.

Hopefully, these quick summaries have given you an idea about the types of massage that might benefit you. To find out more about the massage types we offer or to book a massage in Winston Salem, get in touch with us today.

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Got Neck Pain? Types of Massages That Can Help

Neck pain is such a common problem these days, especially among office workers and others in digital professions. These people spend most of their day hunched over a computer or laptop, often without the proper desk and chair setup. This leads to stiffness and pain in the neck, back, and shoulders. It’s such a common problem that people assume that they just have to put up with it, but there could be a solution.

Massage is an effective way to treat and manage neck pain. Here are some of the best types of massage that can help with your neck pain.

Trigger point therapy

This type of massage therapy identifies the “trigger points” that are causing your neck pain. These may be in your neck or elsewhere, such as your shoulders or back. Your massage therapist will apply pressure to the trigger point and then release the pressure repeatedly. This is done to relieve the tension in the tissue, alleviating the pain it is causing.

Deep tissue massage

Deep tissue massage is one of the most common treatments. It applies strong pressure that penetrates deep into the muscle tissues. It can be a whole-body massage or it can target specific problem areas. Your massage therapist can work around the neck, shoulders, and back to relieve the tension in your muscles that is causing your neck pain.

Shiatsu massage

This Japanese form of massage therapy is similar in practice to trigger point massage, except that it targets specific points of your body known as meridians. Applying pressure to these points in sequence is thought to heal the body and encourage the flow of energy throughout the body. Shiatsu massage helps to relieve pain as well as targeting the cause of the pain by relieving specific tensions.

Reflexology

Similarly, reflexology targets points in your feet, hands, and ears to provide whole body relaxation and pain relief. The feet, especially, are thought to connect to points in the neck, so this kind of treatment applied to the feet is a good method of treating neck pain.

As well as regular massage treatment, another effective way of managing neck pain is correcting your posture in the workplace, as this is often the cause of the pain. Here are some tips to help you achieve this.

Are you ready to say goodbye to neck pain? Get in touch with us at My Moonstone Massage to find out more about the types of massage we offer, or go online and book your massage in Winston Salem now.

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Four Reasons Why You Should Try Cupping

Are you still on the fence about cupping? We’ve already explained a bit about what cupping is and how it works, so now let’s look at some of the key reasons why you should try it. Don’t be put off by the weird marks it can leave behind – these are temporary and should not be painful. Here are a few reasons why you should try cupping.

1. Relieves Pain

Like any massage technique, cupping is a great method of pain relief. It increases blood flow to the treated areas, helping to speed up healing and recovery as a result. Cupping can also help to break down adhesions like knots and scar tissue in and around muscles, which helps to relieve stiffness and related pain. Back pain, shoulder pain, headaches, and arthritis are just a few conditions that can be helped by cupping.

2. Promotes Relaxation

Another commonality of massage in general, cupping is ideal for relaxation. The increase in blood flow helps you physically relax by removing any tension you may have. It also has relaxing and stress relieving effects on your mind, helping you to rest and relax, and even promoting better sleep. You might even find yourself nodding off on the table during your treatment.

3. Supports the Immune System

As well as promoting blood circulation around your body and to affected areas, cupping also helps to move lymphatic fluid around your body. With these two factors combined, cupping helps to boost your immune system and prevent or relieve symptoms related to asthma, the common cold, allergies, chronic coughs, and more.

4. Improves skin

Another benefit of increased blood flow is that it is great for your skin. The increased blood flow and the oxygen and nutrients delivered in the blood help to tighten the skin, improving areas like stretch marks and cellulite. Your massage therapist may also use essential oils in the cupping treatment, which have lots of their own benefits on your skin. The heat used in the cupping treatment (to create the vacuum within the cups) is also beneficial, promoting the renewal of skin cells.

If you’re ready to give a cupping massage a try, then you can book an appointment with Moonstone Massage in Winston Salem, NC. Or you can get in touch to find out about our other treatments, from deep tissue massage to reflexology, and lots more in between.

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How to Know if Deep Tissue Massage is Right for You

Lots of people praise deep tissue massage for its relaxation, healing, and health-boosting properties. Other people worry that it is too rough and can be painful. So, with so many different types of massage to choose from, how do you know if deep tissue massage is the right one for you. Here are some common questions people ask when they’re wondering the same thing…

Is deep tissue massage painful?

This is the top reason for avoiding deep tissue massage, but it is mostly misunderstood. Massage therapists will tailor the pressure they apply based on your preference and tolerance levels. If you’re in pain during a massage, then you will subconsciously tense up your muscles, which will make the massage less effective. So, it is not in the massage therapist’s best interests to put you through pain.

Many people, especially if it’s their first time, will keep quiet if they are in pain on the massage table, too embarrassed to admit it. This means your therapist won’t necessarily know that they need to adjust the pressure, unless they feel your muscles tensing up. It is important to communicate with your massage therapist to give you the most effective and comfortable experience possible.

Is it the same as Swedish massage?

Deep tissue massage is often confused with Swedish massage, probably because these are the most commonly referred to massage types. They do use similar massage techniques involving kneading the muscles and fascia. Swedish massage typically works the whole body, whereas deep tissue massage may target a specific problem area. Swedish massage also tends to use lighter touches than deep tissue massage.

Is deep tissue massage relaxing?

If you’re solely looking for a relaxing massage experience, then Swedish massage is probably better suited to you. However, many people do find deep tissue massage to be a relaxing experience, as long as you communicate with your therapist about the pressure levels and target areas. It certainly has relaxation effects in the hours and days after your massage.

What can deep tissue massage treat?

As well as its relaxation benefits, deep tissue massage is a great option for pain relief. It is an effective treatment for those suffering from chronic pain or a variety of ailments, such as carpal tunnel, fibromyalgia, whiplash, sports injuries, and tension headaches. Common pain and tension in the neck and back can be treated with either Swedish massage or deep tissue massage.

If deep tissue massage sounds like the perfect treatment for you, then you can book a massage with us in Winston Salem, NC. Get in touch if you have any more questions about deep tissue massage.

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Deep Tissue Massage for Pain Relief

When those niggling pains present themselves, it can have a real impact on your life. Even everyday tasks like driving to work and playing with your kids can become a challenge. Whether you’ve injured yourself, are suffering from chronic pain, or you’re experiencing muscular pain after intense workouts, you don’t need to reach for the painkillers, deep tissue massage can give you the pain relief you need.

A deep tissue massage involves a massage therapist applying slow and firm pressure to a concentrated area, usually one affected by pain or tension. For more information on what deep tissue massage involves and more of its benefits, click here to read more.

How does deep tissue massage provide pain relief?

Deep tissue massage treats pain and tension in a number of ways. The massage therapist applies a lot of pressure to penetrate deep into the different layers of muscle tissue. They will work around the muscles, fascia, tendons, and ligaments to help realign the layers of tissue and lengthen the muscles. This helps to break up any adhesions and address other problem areas that are causing you pain.

Deep tissue massage also helps due to the fact that the massage therapist’s activity helps to stimulate blood flow to the affected area. This means that more oxygen and nutrients are being delivered to the muscles in that area, which helps to speed up recovery and repair. This also works in the opposite way, as it stimulates the flow of waste products such as lactic acid away from the muscles, which helps to speed up recovery and provide pain relief. This is especially helpful in addressing muscle soreness after a tough workout.

This kind of massage also helps to reduce inflammation caused by pain or injury, which improves your flexibility and mobility while also relieving some of the pain and tension from the affected area.

What kinds of pain does deep tissue massage treat?

If you’re wondering if deep tissue massage can help with the physical pain you’re feeling, the answer is most likely yes. Here are a few conditions that deep tissue massage has proved effective against:

As you can see, deep tissue massage can help with minor pains such as a simple cramp as well as more serious injuries and chronic pain that affects you every day.

If you experience any kind of pain in your day-to-day life, then deep tissue massage could be solution for you. Contact us to book your deep tissue massage in Winston Salem, NC.

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Massage Therapy for Chronic Pain Management

Living with chronic pain feels like a constant battle. You’ve probably tried lots of different methods to help manage the pain, some more successful than others. It can be extremely frustrating trying to search for something that works. One treatment that was proven to be effective in managing chronic pain is massage therapy. There has even been scientific research supporting its effectiveness.

This article will talk about how massage therapy can help with chronic pain and some of the different kinds of massage that can be helpful.

Massage therapy can help chronic pain management by…

Boosting serotonin

Massage results in the release of a neurotransmitter called serotonin. While this doesn’t treat the cause of the pain, it can change your perception of and sensitivity to pain. It has been found to modulate pain perception, meaning you won’t experience pain symptoms as severely as you normally do.

Improving deep sleep

When you’re always in pain, it can be difficult to fall asleep and stay asleep at night. Not getting enough quality sleep could make your condition worse as our bodies heal as we sleep. It will also affect your mood and energy levels, making daily life even more difficult. Regular massage helps us to sleep better at night and experience deeper sleep, which can help with pain reduction.

Reducing inflammation

Chronic pain can be caused or made worse by inflammation in our muscles, joints, and cells. Massage therapy helps to reduce cellular inflammation, which is helpful in relieving pain, especially when performed regularly.

Improving mood

It’s not just the physical sensations of chronic pain that are hard to live with, but also the emotional and mental impact it has on you. Many chronic pain sufferers also display symptoms of depression. Regular massage has mood-boosting effects, helping to improve the quality of life of anyone experiencing chronic pain.

Which types of massage are best for chronic pain?

Which type of massage should you choose for chronic pain management? Swedish massage, Thai massage, and acupressure have all been used as effective treatments for those suffering from chronic back pain. Trigger point massage and myofascial release can also be helpful for targeting pain in a specific part of the body. Reflexology is another potential treatment for pain conditions like migraines and chronic headaches.

If you’re looking for a natural way to manage your chronic pain, then book a massage with us today. Or you can contact us if you’re still wondering what the best massage is for your specific pain condition.

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Sick of Back Pain? Try Therapeutic Massage Therapy!

Think that massage is just a luxury treat when you’re feeling a bit stressed? Think again! Therapeutic massage can be an essential component of your physical and mental health regime, especially for those suffering from an illness or injury, or recovering after an accident or surgery.

Therapeutic massage is especially beneficial for those suffering from common ailments such as back pain and stiffness in the shoulders and neck. Read on for more information about therapeutic massage therapy and how it can help with your back pain.

What is therapeutic massage?

The term “therapeutic massage” tends to refer to massage therapy for the physical health benefits and structural changes it provides for the patient and their body. This may be in contrast to massage treatments that are done purely for relaxation and stress relieving purposes. Therapeutic massage is normally an ongoing treatment, with changes occurring over several weeks of therapy rather than in a single session.

Therapeutic massage has also been used as a term that differentiates legitimate massage therapy and practitioners from the not so legitimate ones.

Many different types of massage therapy are classed as “therapeutic”, including sports massage and deep tissue massage. These treatments certainly focus on structural changes in the body, while gentler treatments like Swedish massage are more focused on relaxation, although they do also offer physical benefits.

How can therapeutic massage help you?

For those suffering from chronic back pain, even everyday tasks can be a painful challenge. Regularly receiving therapeutic massage from a trained professional can help to relieve this pain and even treat the cause of it.

Therapeutic massage can break down “knots” and areas of tightness in the muscles by the massage therapist applying pressure and manipulating the tissue. These areas could be a source of pain and reduced mobility, so eliminating the tension in the muscles helps to improve flexibility and mobility while also reducing pain levels.

Therapeutic massage also stimulates blood flow around the body, which is essential for a speedy recovery after an injury, or even after a tough workout. More blood flow to the affected area means that more oxygen and nutrients are being delivered to the tissue, which helps it to repair and recover faster.

But don’t think that therapeutic massage is a grueling treatment that only benefits you in the long run. Therapeutic massage does still offer lots of mental benefits related to relaxation and those feel-good chemicals, endorphins.

If you’re interested in therapeutic massage, then take a look at the range of massages we have available at Moonstone Massage, for expert treatment in Winston Salem, NC.

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7 Different Types of Massage

Massage therapy is an amazingly varied practice. Each treatment and each therapist can bring something slightly different to the experience and the benefits you receive. There are so many different types of massage, so let’s go through some of the most popular treatments available.

Swedish massage

Swedish massage is one of the most common treatments. It is typically a full-body massage that uses light pressure to relieve tension in muscles. It is thought to be a very relaxing massage.

Deep tissue massage

Deep tissue is similar in practice to Swedish massage, except that involves more pressure. For this reason, it may not be as relaxing as Swedish massage, but the treatment should not be painful. If the pressure is too much for you, you can always tell your massage therapist and they will ease off.

Sports massage

This is another massage that involves deep pressure applied to the muscles. Sports massage is often used to treat specific injuries or tensions, although it can also be a full-body massage. It is not just for sportspeople; lots of people can benefit from a sports massage, including people who sit at a desk all day.

Prenatal massage

Some massages can place to much stress on the body for a pregnant woman. For this reason, prenatal massage was developed to treat aches and stiffness during pregnancy in a way that is safe for the baby. Prenatal massage uses light pressure, mostly focused around the lower body as this is under greater pressure during pregnancy.

Hot stone massage

Hot stone massage is a relaxing, therapeutic massage style. Heated stones are placed along the body to improve blood flow, relax your muscles, and relieve stress. It can also be effective at alleviating pain.

Trigger point massage

Trigger point massage treats specific parts of the body that are affected by injury or tension. These specific “trigger points” are targeted by the massage therapist to relieve the tension and treat the pain being caused. Both gentle and deeper strokes are used in this type of massage.

Reflexology

Reflexology is an extremely relaxing treatment that is said to restore energy levels. It targets pressure points in specific areas of the body, mostly in the feet and hands. If you’re uncomfortable about removing items of clothing during your massage, then reflexology is perfect because you can be fully clothed for it.

Do any of these massage types catch your eye? Get in touch with Moonstone Massage or book online to reserve an appointment with an experienced massage therapist in Winston Salem.

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Which Massage is Right for Me?

People get massages for lots of different reasons – to relax, to recover from an injury, to relieve pain, to improve their performance, and even more. Depending on your reasons for wanting a massage, different types of massage might be better suited to you than others. If you’re wondering which massage is right for you, read on for advice from Moonstone Massage.

For back and neck pain

Tension and pain in the back, neck, and shoulders are very common, especially since a lot of people sit at a desk working all day. Lots of massages can help with this kind of pain and tension. Swedish massage, deep tissue massage, Thai massage, and trigger point massage are just a few that can help your pain. If you describe your pain to your massage therapist, they can recommend the best type of massage for your pain.

To relieve stress and anxiety

All massages have beneficial aftereffects that help to relieve both physical and mental stress. But if you’re looking for a nice, relaxing massage, then you might prefer a gentler one as opposed to things like deep tissue massage. Swedish massage is similar to deep tissue, but it usually involves lighter pressure, making it a good one to choose. Hot stone massage is another great relaxing massage. Most people find a cupping massage relaxing, too, although it may feel strange at first.

To recover faster after a workout

Sports massage is often given to athletes to help improve their performance and speed up their recovery in between training sessions or matches. But you don’t have to be an elite athlete to feel the benefits. Sports massage helps to improve blood flow to sore muscles and direct lactic acid out of the muscles, decreasing your muscle soreness the next day.

For injury rehabilitation

Massage for injury recovery should target the affected area specifically. It may also need to treat tension in other areas if your injury has caused you to overcompensate. Sports massage and deep tissue massage are extremely effective at treating certain types of injuries like sprains and strains.

For aches during pregnancy

Pregnancy can put a lot of strain on your body, but some massages will be too strong for the health of your baby. You should get a specific prenatal massage from a therapist who is experienced with this type of massage.

If you’re still unsure what type of massage is right for you, contact us with your questions and we can advise you properly. If you want to book a massage in Winston Salem, you can do so with Moonstone Massage.

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6 Things to Know Before You Try Cupping

The term “cupping” may sound strange, but it’s actually an effective and relaxing form of table massage. If you’re completely new to the cupping therapy, then you can read our blog which introduces you to this technique. If you’re already up to speed and are thinking of going for your first treatment, then here are a few things you should know before you go.

It’s a short treatment

If you’re hoping to relax on a massage table for an hour or more, then cupping isn’t the answer. Or, you can combine cupping with another complementary treatment to extend your spa time. The entire treatment tends to last between 10-20 minutes only. It’s perfect if you’re trying to fit a massage treatment into a busy schedule.

It might feel unusual

Having cups suck your skin into a vacuum, unsurprisingly, might feel a little strange. Some people describe it as an uncomfortable feeling, but it should not be painful. Others enjoy the feeling and don’t find it uncomfortable at all.

Not everyone gets those weird marks

You’ve probably seen pictures of people with horrific-looking circular “bruises” as a result of cupping therapy. These aren’t actually bruises but simply a result of the increased blood flow to the area. They shouldn’t hurt like bruises either. These marks will vary from one person to the next. Some will have very light marks that fade quickly while others might not see marks at all. They are likely to be darker the first time you get cupping and may be lighter with each treatment.

The marks will fade

If you do walk away with big, red, circular marks all over your body, don’t worry. They will fade pretty quickly over the next few days and should disappear completely in less than two weeks. If you’re self-conscious about how they look, then don’t get cupping therapy right before you go on a beach holiday.

You can get cupping all over your body

Cupping therapy is most often associated with the back, but it can be performed along the arms and legs, too. This can be helpful in treating specific problems like knee or shoulder pain, or for helping specific muscles recover.

It’s a job for a professional

Cupping is a completely safe form of treatment in the hands of a properly trained, professional massage therapist, but it should not be tried by an amateur using DIY methods. When done incorrectly, cupping can cause burns and blisters as a result of improper technique or leaving the cups on for too long.

If you’re interested in trying cupping therapy for the first time (or if you’re a regular), then Moonstone Massage. You can contact us if you have any more questions about cupping or you can book a massage online.