If you’ve always been intrigued by the world of massage therapy and the many benefits it can have, there are a few techniques that you can easily try out at home.
Massage is a great practice to include in a treatment plan for the management of chronic pain and illness, especially for conditions such as arthritis. This is an umbrella term for over 100 medical conditions that impact the musculoskeletal system, causing pain, inflammation and stiffness in the joints. Approximately 3.85 million Australians (or one in five) are impacted by some form of arthritis. There’s evidence that regular massage helps to alleviate arthritic pain, allowing the sufferer to relax and experience improved sleep.
Enrolling in an industry-recognised massage course like the Discover Massage Australia Certificate in Whole Body Massage is the first step to an in-depth and safe knowledge of massage techniques.
In the meantime, why not try some of these techniques out at home before you enrol with us? We’ve put together a list of massage techniques that can work to help a variety of health complaints (and some that are just simply amazing for relaxation!)
Massage techniques for the home
Technique #1 Reflexology massage
Reflexology is a type of massage that focuses on the individual reflex points within the feet (as well as the hands and ears). These different points correspond to different areas and organs within the body, and by kneading the ball of the foot, pulling on the toes and applying pressure to the arch of the foot, it’s believed healing outcomes can be achieved.
Reflexologists believe that when a person is experiencing sensitivity or tenderness in the feet, it’s a sign of imbalances within the body. These blocked energies can be cleared away to support better blood flow and nutrient delivery by massaging the nerve endings in the feet, hands and ears.
Technique #2 Soft tissue release
Using massage to release the soft tissue surrounding the muscles can be amazing for dealing with a range of common concerns. Easing the congestion of the tissue, encouraging elasticity and boosting muscle length can help to decrease recovery time after exercise, as well as alleviate pain and inflammation. It involves stretching the muscle out, and then applying physical pressure to the muscle in its stretched state.
Technique #3 Cross fibre friction technique
The cross fibre friction technique is a specific massage movement that works to break down muscle tissue adhesions and scar tissue surrounding injuries. In turn, it can assist the recovery of motion in the specific areas, increasing flexibility and joint lubrication through encouraging blood and lymph flow to the area.
For this technique, simply use the ball of the thumb to rub the painful or inflamed area in circular movements.
Technique #4 Self massage
Although it’s always nice to take a breather and have someone else massage you, self-massage is another at-home option. If you’ve got a particular area that’s causing you pain, it can really help to apply pressure. This will ease the tension in the muscle ligaments.
You could use a tennis ball to roll into your rotator cuff muscles, or use a foam roller to assist with lower back pain and lengthening the muscles in your legs.
Technique #5 Relaxing massage
Of course, there really is nothing better than treating a loved one to a tranquil and well-deserved massage purely for relaxation. Create a relaxing atmosphere by lighting some candles and having hot towels ready, and then use long strokes with essential oils to leave them feeling like a million bucks!
More advanced techniques
Once you have completed a Discover Massage Australia Certificate in Whole Body Massage or a Discover Massage Australia HLT42015 Certificate IV in Massage Therapy Practice, you can then look at completing more advanced massage course that will help with more advanced techniques.
For example, once you have completed either of the two courses above you could do the following:
Advanced technique #1 Deep tissue massage for sports players
Deep tissue massage is another massage technique that can be really beneficial to try out at home, although you’ll need to be careful with this one as you can put heavy strain on the muscles. Deep tissue massage can be helpful for athletes both before and after games, as it will warm up their muscles to help them avoid injury, and also help them wind down afterwards. Deep tissue massage is also a key part of improving Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMs), which is the stiff and achy feeling experienced the morning after major physical exertion.
Deep tissue massage involves two stages. The first is stripping, where you use your arm or elbow to apply pressure and roll along the entire length of the muscle fibre. The next stage is using your fingers to apply pressure to each individual muscle fibre, which will ease out any tension.
Discover Massage offer a range of Deep Tissue Massage for Common Injuries courses that focus on alleviating the pain and stress caused by different injuries.
Advanced technique #2 Remedial massage
Remedial massage focuses on particular problem areas, specifically targeting areas of pain or inflammation. It’s designed to ‘remedy’ chronic issues within the body by balancing muscle and soft tissue length, tension and tone, which will increase blood flow to the areas. For remedial massage, the person will need to have their muscles, tendons, ligaments and connective tissues assessed to see how their rehabilitation, pain and injury management can best be carried out.
This type of massage can be tricky and requires training before it can be carried out. Discover Massage’s Diploma in Remedial Massage is an excellent upgrade from our Certificate in Whole Body Massage, if you’re interested in using remedial massage to help your family and friends with their injuries. It’s important to note that the prerequisite for entry to our Diploma in Remedial Massage is the HLT42015 Certificate IV in Massage.
Taking your passion for massage to the next level
If you have an interest in massage and have found yourself wanting to try it at home, why not make sure you have the right knowledge first by enrolling in a Discover Massage Australia course? We have a range of courses designed for beginners that will ensure you’re giving your friends and family massages with all the knowledge you need. We’ll show you the correct techniques and give you a hands-on experience that will leave you feeling confident in your massage therapy techniques.
Sign up for a Discover Massage Australia course here.