Swedish massage is the most common and best-known type of massage. While Asian modalities emphasize balancing life energies, Swedish massage is based on an understanding of anatomy and physiology. Swedish massage is an excellent choice for stress relief and for people who experience the whole body pain of muscle cramping. Therapists gently help sore, tense muscles release so that the patient can feel some relief and rest. At Spa Imbue we use five basic movements:
- Effleurage: These are long sweeping strokes from the top of a muscle to the bottom, usually at the beginning or the end of a massage (or both).
- Petrissage: Rolling and kneading the muscles, like kneading bread dough. Pressure can vary according to the client’s sensitivity. The massage therapist may focus attention on a “crunchy” or tense area. They’ll start first with light petrissage and increase the pressure to help the muscle release.
- Tapotement: Light and rhythmic tapping or drumming. This technique can vary in pressure and speed and can be either relaxing or energizing.
- Friction: Deep pressure is applied to a particular muscle to encourage it to release.
- Vibration: Shaking or Rocking.
The therapist will use oil or lotion to lubricate your body, and they will generally start by massaging the whole body and then working on specific problem areas. Swedish massage can provide whole-body relaxation, and it can help people recover from some injuries.