The way to a person’s heart can be through their feet.
Each foot has 7,200 nerve endings. Those nerve endings run down to the feet through almost every part of the body. A good foot massage will slowly work its magic though the body, sending messages to glands and even organs like the heart and relieving stress and tension.
That’s why I love to give and receive massages. I’ve been licensed in Maryland and Virginia and have worked as a massage therapist for over three years. I know exactly how to touch your feet – and your back, neck, thighs and other parts of your body suffering from the day-to-day wear and tear of daily life.
My favorite types of massage to perform are hot stone, myofascial release and trigger point. But I like to receive deep tissue, Thai and myofascial release.
Let’s start with myofascial release, since that’s something I both love to give and receive. Myofascial tissue is what helps support your muscles; it is made up of collagen and elastin fibers and spreads like a web across your body, almost like a wet suit. It has a tension strength of more than 2000 pounds–which now that I think about it, it’s probably what Spider-Man uses to swing from building to building.
But here’s the problem: The fibers are supposed to feel pliable but they can get rigid and tight. People can develop “knots,” such as from poor posture or repetitive tasks. Sometimes our bodies suffer a trauma, such as like a car accident which causes whiplash. These are all “trigger points” that can cause people pain. When I perform myofascial release, I apply gentle but sustained pressure into the myofascial tissue to eliminate pain and restore motion. I don’t necessarily work on the trigger points but instead on the broad network of muscles that are causing you pain—and eventually that eases those trigger points..
When I’m done, believe me you’ll want to swing like Spider-Man again!
By contrast, trigger point therapy, also called neuromuscular therapy, actually attacks those tight bands of tissue directly, through cycles of isolated pressure and release. There’s a twitch response that I see when the area is palpated.
Meanwhile, hot stone is basically a Swedish massage, but with a twist. (Swedish massage is your classic, relaxing massage, centered around stroking, kneading, rubbing, pounding and shaking.)
I use heated stones to warm and loosen your muscles. This was a technique favored by Native Americans to treat aching muscles and it has gained huge popularity. Essentially, smooth black volcanic rocks are heated to between 120 and 150 degrees and then are placed on various parts of your body. It can get very intense but your body will love it.
Another advantage of Hot Stone massage is that it gives you benefits of deep tissue massage without the same kind of pressure. But recall that I mentioned that I love to receive deep tissue massage. The strokes are typically applied slowly at a depth that is tolerable. During this type of massage, the muscle tissue is compressed, broadened, and stretched during the stroke and gradually softens. I find that it is a great way to release adhesion’s and restrictions.
Thai massage is something entirely different. It is usually done on a mat, not a massage table, and it combines Swedish massage strokes with stimulation of acupressure points. It really helps circulate the blood and leaves you energized.. That’s why I love it, as it get me ready to face the day.
Finally, I have been experimenting with something new and exciting—Bondassage. It’s an entry level way to experience SMBD, combining massage techniques with bondage, slow flogging and highly sensual play.
Okay, maybe Bondassage is not officially recognized by the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork. But everyone needs to try it at least once