Massage has been practiced for thousands of years. Today, if you need or want a massage, you can choose from among 80 massage styles with a wide variety of pressures, movements, and techniques. These all involve pressing, rubbing or manipulating muscles and other soft tissues with hands and fingers. Sometimes, even forearms, elbows or feet are used.
Styles used in massage therapy range from long, smooth strokes to short, percussive strokes. Some massage therapists use oils and lotions; others do not. Most massage therapists have clients to undress for a massage, but some do not. A massage can last anywhere from 5 minutes to 2 hours.
Before you can decide which massage style is best for you, you need to ask yourself a question. Do you simply want a massage for relaxation and stress control? Or do you need symptom relief or help with a certain health condition? Before booking a massage, let the therapist know what you’re looking for. Then your therapist can customize your massage, depending on your age, condition, or any special needs or goals you have.